Earrings are the most common source of traumatic injury to the ear lobe. They commonly catch on objects and clothing which can accidentally tear through the ear lobe. This leaves the ear lobe bleeding with an unsightly injury.
- Heavy earrings can cause stretching on the ear lobes, especially if worn daily for extended years.
- The ear lobe thins with age making it more common to stretch or tear the ear lobe. Ear lobe injuries can happen at any age.
The good news is there is treatment for a torn or stretched ear lobe! Dr. Trussler in Austin Texas does recommend treating the torn earlobe within 24 hours by closing the injury with stitches. This can easily be done in the office under local anesthesia. Techniques can be performed which even maintain the hole for replacement of earrings, though if the hole is not preserved, the ear lobe can be re-pierced in 6 weeks in the office.
- If treatment is not sought immediately, the earlobe is allowed to heal over a 4 week period and then the healed notch is opened and the old laceration closed.This is similarly performed in the office.
- Stretched ear lobes are typically treated the same way, though the goal is to make the ear lobe smaller and symmetric with the other side.
- Simple scar care may be recommended.
Earrings can be replaced after about 6 weeks of healing with the hole placed slightly high in the lobe so not to encourage further injuries. Dr. Trussler can evaluate and treat these injuries in his Austin, Texas plastic surgery office.