Earlobes often need repair either to correct tears from an earring, or to close the enlarged holes that can develop from placing a gauge or other piercing in the earlobe.
Earlobe Surgery Video
Earlobe repair, including Ear Gauge Repair - James Nachbar, MD, FACS
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Any earring, but especially heavy ones, can pull on the hole created by piercing the ear, and cause it to stretch and lengthen, or even to pull all the way through, leaving a "split" where the earring hole was.
Often, a hoop earring may have become caught on something (or may have been grabbed by a child), resulting in an earlobe tear.
Earlobe "gauging" is also gaining in popularity. However, it is not uncommon for a patient, having placed an earlobe gauge when younger, to now find that the enlarged hole in the earlobe is interfering with social and job prospects.
Almost all earlobe injuries, tears, or enlarged holes can be repaired in the office under local anesthesia.
When there is an enlarged earring hole, it may be possible to simply remove the skin that has formed in the elongated hole, and close the hole altogether. If an earring hole is still desired, Dr. Nachbar will re-pierce the ear after about six weeks from the repair.
The procedure is somewhat more complex when the earring has pulled all the way through the earlobe. When this happens, there is a risk that a "notch" will form if it is simply closed. Therefore, Dr. Nachbar makes a small flap of skin to bridge the gap where the notch would have formed.
The procedure is even more complex when a gauge hole is being closed, because the remaining earlobe tissue is elongated. There are several designs of repair that Dr. Nachbar uses to close the gauge hole, depending on the location and amount of the remaining tissue.
Plan Your Procedure
When you come in for your complimentary consultation, Dr. Nachbar will evaluate the problem with the earlobe or earlobes, and discuss your options. We look forward to meeting you!