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Ear Pinning and Split Earlobe Repair

Prominent ears and split earlobes are easily corrected with minimally invasive surgical procedures that can be performed with local anesthesia. This article outlines some of the basic information for these two procedures

Tired of having dumbo ears? Have you worn heavy earrings and now

have torn earlobes? All of these conditions can be easily

corrected with simple cosmetic procedures to repair the defects.

In patients with prominent ears, an otoplasty, or ear pinning,

procedure can be performed to set the ears closer to the head.

In patients with split earlobes either due to trauma or long term

use of earrings, earlobe repair can be undertaken in an office



Patients who are born with prominent ears often have a

malformation of the cartilage which provides the support of the

ear. This is often corrected by making an incision behind the ear,

elevating the skin from the cartilage, and then taking a suture

and suturing the ear into a more natural appearance. At times,

some of the cartilage will need to be removed but this can be

done through the same incision. The sutures used will be permanent

and do have the possibility of breaking at some point in the life

of the patient. If this should happen and the ear become prominent

again, the procedure can be repeated.

In older patients, the procedure can be done using local

anesthesia. The procedure can be performed in children in early

elementary school though general anesthesia is often necessary as

these children will not be able to cooperate with the procedure.

The patient is usually expected to wear a compressive headband

dressing for a time period and usually a light headband for an

additional time. The exact postoperative course is surgeon

dependent but care should be taken to ensure that the ears are

allowed to heal before returning to contact sports, wearing

helmets, or even wearing glasses.

Earlobe repair

Torn earlobes can be the result of trauma or possibly prolonged

wearing of heavy earrings. Once the earlobe is torn, one of several

procedures can be undertaken to repair the tear. The procedure

used will depend on the surgeonís preference and the desire of the

patient to wear earrings again.

The easiest procedure to performs is to simply close the tear.

This will work if the patient does not desire to wear earrings

again. If the patient wishes to wear earrings again, this is not a

good option because the repaired area will only reach a maximum

strength of 80% of the natural strength, creating a much weak area

for a new tear to form.

If the patient wishes to wear earrings again, either a z-plasty

or flap procedure is required to close the tear to allow for

adequate strength for another earring. Depending on the actual

technique used, the piercing may be left in place and a stud

replaced in the healing wound in as little as a weak. The surgeon

may opt to allow the wound to heal and undertake a new piercing in

6-8 weeks after maximal healing has occurred.

Regardless of the technique usedHealth Fitness Articles, the procedure can be undertaken

using only local anesthesia. There is virtually no downtime and

the patient can resume normal activities very quickly.

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Dr. Verret is a facial plastic surgeon in Plano, TX. He specializes in cosmetic surgery of the face and neck. Visit him on the web at†or call for a consultation 972.608.0100.

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