Stretched or torn earlobes can be a painful and frustrating problem, especially for those who love to accessorize with a beautiful pair of earrings. It’s not an uncommon problem– It can even happen to international superstars, like Beyonce. During a concert, one of her earrings got caught and tore her earlobe in the middle of a performance!

While accidental trauma is one cause of earlobe repairs, years of wearing large, heavy earrings or purposely enlarging the holes with different gauges of jewelry can leave patients looking for a “redo button” for their pierced ears. The good news is that it only takes a few stitches and a couple of weeks recovery time to restore your lobes to their former glory. The even better news is that it can be done right in your dermatologist’s office!

Earlobe Repair Procedure

The procedure begins with an examination to determine the best means of repair for your particular problem. During that time, you’ll talk to your doctor about what you want your lobes to look like after the procedure, as well as any history of keloids or scarring. These are factors that your doctor will want to know in order to give you the best results with as little recovery time as possible.

Once the procedure is in place, your doctor will clean the area with disinfectant, then injects the lobe with a local anesthetic. This prevents you from feeling the procedure as it’s happening by numbing the nerves in the area. Once the lobe is completely numb, the surgery will begin.

For those with acute trauma, as in a complete tear caused by tugging or pulling an earring, the two pieces of skin can be stitched back together using very tiny stitches. Operations dealing with larger holes, such as those caused by gauging the ears, typically involve cutting the two halves of the lobes apart, then stitching them together down the entire length of the hole.

Recovery Time

Recovery time is usually one week, at which time your stitches can be removed. Typically a 6 week period of time is allowed before re-piercing is done.  Check with your dermatologist as to whether the earlobes are ready for this procedure.  Surgical or stainless steel posts are recommended for the re-piercing.  Hoop earrings are not advised during the repair period.

At Advanced Dermatology & Cosmetic Institute, we offer a wide range of skin-focused services. From scar repair to hair removal, our providers can help you love the skin you’re in!