Restore a Healthy, Whole Appearance to Your Earlobes

Pierced ears are a tradition that goes back centuries. For some, it's considered a rite of passage, while for others, it’s an act of self-expression. Bold earrings and gauges can enhance your look and draw attention to your face, but some jewelry can cause irreversible damage that won’t heal on its own. When piercings get stretched by heavy, dangling earrings or oversized gauges, the earlobes can become permanently disfigured by splitting or tearing and become a nuisance that detracts from your overall appearance.

Fortunately, board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Catherine Haywood can repair torn earlobes with a surgical procedure that removes and restructures damaged tissues to restore a more pleasing shape. With minimal discomfort or downtime, earlobe repair surgery can improve your overall look, whether your ears were affected by heavy jewelry, gauges or trauma.

What is Earlobe Repair Surgery?

Earlobe repair is a surgical procedure used to reshape and mend the ears, especially when piercings or trauma have led to tearing, splitting or stretching. The ears can become damaged for a number of reasons, but those who wear dangling earrings or gauges are more susceptible to accidental injury or a gradual elongation of the piercing hole, both of which can result in torn earlobes that require a surgical fix. Dr. Haywood performs torn earlobe revisions to address these concerns, eliminating pre-existing damage and mending full or partial tears to restore the original condition of your ears. As a highly-skilled plastic surgeon, she can ensure that your results are balanced and natural-looking with minimal scarring, blending in seamlessly to create a more suitable appearance that enhances your overall look.

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Who is a Good Candidate for Earlobe Repair?

Trends can be fickle and short-lived, so some people seeking earlobe repair surgery do so because they regret piercing or gauging their ears. Others have unintentionally damaged their earlobes with heavy earrings that caused stretching or tearing over time. In some cases, hoops or dangling earrings can also get caught on objects or yanked by children and pets, resulting in trauma that ranges from a full or partial split of the earlobe. Regardless of the cause, if your ears have become damaged and won’t heal on their own, then earlobe repair surgery may be right for you. This procedure is ideal for those who:

  • Have split or torn earlobes as a result of trauma, gauges or piercings
  • Are bothered by enlarged or disproportional-looking earlobes
  • Have asymmetrical earlobes that differ in size or shape
  • Want to remove keloids or scar tissue
  • Would like to restore the original appearance of their ears

Candidates should also be non-smokers (or willing to quit), have realistic expectations and be in good overall health. While most people qualify for earlobe repair surgery, a consultation with Dr. Haywood is required to determine if this procedure is right for you. During this time, she’ll evaluate your goals, needs and concerns to decide if earlobe surgery can deliver the results you want and craft an individualized treatment plan just for you.

What to Expect During Your Procedure

Compared to other surgical procedures, earlobe repair is relatively quick and easy. It is typically done in-office with local anesthesia, but the exact process may vary depending on the level of repair needed and your individual goals or expectations. The extent of damage and whether it was caused by stretched piercings, gauged earrings, rips or tears due to trauma or scar tissue formation will also affect how your procedure is performed.

There a few different approaches Dr. Haywood can use to achieve your desired outcome, but earlobe repair usually involves removing a small wedge of tissue or scarring from damaged areas and cleaning up the edges of splits, holes or tears. The earlobe will then be sutured back together with careful attention to sculpt a more pleasing shape and minimize scarring. 

If your earlobe surgery is being done to correct an asymmetrical appearance, Dr. Haywood may remove tissue from one or both earlobes to ensure balanced proportions. Earlobe injuries or trauma may involve additional incisions or the use of a flap technique to repair the damage, which is effective for a number of concerns, including large holes, tears, splits and keloids.

Once your surgery is complete, Dr. Haywood will bandage your ears and provide you with aftercare instructions to ensure a smooth recovery. Since this procedure is done using local anesthesia, there’s no in-office recovery time, and you can go home the same day.

Earlobe Repair Recovery

You might experience some soreness or swelling in your earlobes after surgery, but postoperative discomfort is usually minimal. Most patients are able to resume normal activities the same or next day, but there are still some precautions you should take to ensure your ears heal properly.

One of these precautions is being careful with hairbrushes, jewelry, hats, hairdryers and anything else that can get caught on or harm the ears. If something tugs or pulls on your earlobes while they’re healing, it may cause injury that compromises your results and prolongs your recovery time. Wearing a head wrap for a few weeks after surgery can help prevent this and protect your ears.

Another precaution includes not sleeping on your ears or otherwise applying pressure to the area before your sutures are removed. You should also be sure to keep the area clean but avoid abrasive or irritating products during this time. Dr. Haywood may recommend applying an ointment to aid in the healing process and will provide you with aftercare instructions to ensure a smooth recovery. If you have any additional questions or concerns after your surgery, feel free to contact our office to have them addressed.

Can I Pierce My Ears Again After Surgery?

It goes without saying, but wearing jewelry or re-piercing the ears is not advised until you’ve made a full recovery. Dr. Haywood can help you determine when the time is right, but most patients who want to pierce their ears again can do so about two to six months after surgery.

If you do want to re-pierce your ears, it’s recommended that new piercings are placed above or next to your old ones for best results. Patients should wear studs and lighter jewelry whenever possible to avoid further problems, as the ears can stretch or tear again even after surgery. By taking care of your ears and saving long, fancy or dangling earrings for special events, you can prevent future trauma and maintain your results for years to come.

How Much Does Earlobe Repair Cost?

Earlobe repair isn’t as involved as a breast reduction or tummy tuck, so the average cost is much lower than other surgeries. Typically, earlobe repair at Brampton Plastic Surgery costs somewhere between $400 and $800 per ear, but this can vary depending on the amount of correction needed and which techniques are used to accomplish your goals. During your consultation, Dr. Haywood can provide a more accurate cost estimate so you’ll know what expenses to expect and can better plan for your upcoming surgery.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Q&A With Dr. Catherine Haywood
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Contact Brampton Plastic Surgery

We know that sometimes, the small things can make a big difference. That’s why we offer earlobe repair surgery — to help patients in the Brampton, Mississauga and greater Toronto area restore the appearance of their ears and stop hiding them behind hats, long hair or headbands. To learn how board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Catherine Haywood can fix your torn or damaged earlobes, contact us or call us today at 905-451-2285.