How Widened Ear Hole Piercings Can be Repaired with Stitching or Minor Surgery

Thank you for your question. You submitted a photo of each earlobe and
basically, you are concerned about the hole in the ears which have become somewhat enlarged
and you’re asking about a surgical repair where you can maybe avoid having to cut all
the way through beyond the hhole inside and split the earlobe. Well, you’re basically looking for a detailed
answer about the approach that would be recommended in your situation. Well, I can certainly give you some guidance
on this question, again, with the absence of a physical examination. A little bit of background, I’m a Board-certified
cosmetic surgeon and Fellowship-trained oculofacial plastic and reconstructive surgeon. I have been in practice in Manhattan and Long
Island for over 20 years. And helping people deal with stretched earlobe
as well as elongated holes is a very common procedure in our practice. So I’ll share with you essentially my thinking
when I meet with a patient who’s concerned about the hole that they currently have in
the earlobe and what they would like to do to make things better for themselves. So to begin with, to determine whether or
not a hole is elongated to the point where the earlobe is best be divided is essentially
the question of the proximity of the hole to the edge. And that’s kind of where I start from. Basically, if someone has been wearing heavy
earrings and it has been stretching and stretching the earlobe until there’s so little tissue
between the edge of the hole and the edge of the ear, then it just makes sense to just
excise. And sometimes when people have such a significant
amount of stretch, we actually have to do some kind of an earlobe reduction at the same
time. So that’s a situation that doesn’t seem
to be the case for you. In your situation, the hole is enlarged and
the question that I would pose to someone like yourself and it probably makes sense
to look at the surgical option is that sometimes when someone has a good size amount of tissue
and their earlobe has a little bit amount of space, sometimes it’s almost better to
just do another piercing and avoid getting that connection or doing a repair because
you maybe want to avoid a surgery. Now that being said, in a situation like yours,
looking at where those holes are which is typically kind of in the geometric center
of the earlobe, I would say that it makes sense to do what I describe is cutting out
the hole in the middle of the donut type of approach. What you’re doing essentially is that the
inside of that hole where the earing is placed has epidermis and basically, it is a smooth
surface that’s continuous with the skin. So in order to close that, you essentially
cut out the epidermis and then you surgically close the hole. What I do is I essentially place stitches
sometimes in the inside as well as the front and the back and basically, try to create
an aesthetic closure and at the same time maintain the shape of the earlobe. So sometimes, this procedure can be deceptively
complex because you want to have the balance. You allow that area to heal and then at a
certain point, usually a few weeks away, you can go ahead a re-pierce. I generally tell my patients, don’t pierce
in the same place because that area is still going to take about a year for healing to
ensure. Basically, what we end up doing is we end
up doing the piercing for the patient and that’s where my assistants and the patient
get together and really figure out where the optimal location is so that the balance is
there and then we have this little gold stud earrings that we actually just place for them
and then they do what they normally do for hygienic care. And then once that area is healed, they can
take that stud earring out and then use the jewelry that they normally would otherwise
use. So I think that approach makes the most sense
to me again in the absence of a physical exam. So basically thinking again of cutting the
hole out in the donut and then doing a really nice surgical closure in order to achieve
a minimal amount of scarring and get a nice result so that you can then later on have
the earlobe re-pierced. So I hope that was helpful, I wish you the
best of luck and thank you for your question.

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