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Can Stretched or Torn Earlobes Be Repaired?

Having an earlobe reduced or repaired is a common and inexpensive procedure.

While heavy earrings or gauges may be popular today, you might regret the effects to your earlobes as you age. Not to worry, stretched and torn earlobes are typically repairable as an in-office procedure.

Dr. Sandra Lee recently appeared on The Doctors TV show to repair an ear stretched out by ear gauging. Ear gauging is a process where the earlobes are stretched radically to accommodate jewelry. The long term effects are not very attractive and many choose to repair their stretched earlobes when they want to enter the corporate workplace or begin their own families.

Ear Gauge Hole Repair Shown on The Doctors
Ear Gauge Hole Repair Shown on The Doctors

"Split/torn earlobes or stretched earlobes are a common problem faced by many women. Fortunately, repairing the earlobe is a relatively straightforward office procedure that can be performed in less than an hour," describes Houston Facial Plastic Surgeon Dr. Haresh Yalamanchili, "In certain cases, however, the problem may be that the earlobe has thinned and the earring will not stay in the desired position, but will instead droop downward. In these cases it is often possible to rejuvenate the earlobe by using a dermal filler to plump it up. This creates the support for an earring to remain in the ideal position."

A type of otoplasty or cosmetic earlobe surgery, the Earlobe Reduction procedure may actually restore earlobes to their previous condition by excising extra flesh. Local anesthetic, typically Novocain, is applied to the earlobe and the section of extra tissue and stretched piercing is removed entirely. The two halves are then reconnected and sewn up with fine sutures. After about a week, there may be a thin white scar but this too will fade over time. Ears may be re-pierced after 6 weeks should patients choose to wear earrings again.
Earlobe Gauging Repair before and after photos
Actual Earlobe Gauging Repair Results of Dr. Haresh Yalamanchili

The cost to repair torn earlobes varies by doctor and by region ranging from $350 for simple tears up to $1,500 for more complex repairs. Earlobe repair is typically performed in the office under local anesthesia.