A torn or split earlobe can occur from pulling of an earring or prolonged wearing of heavy earrings. This can result in a complete split extending to the border of the earlobe or an enlarged hole within the earlobe.
The split earlobe deformity can be easily repaired in the office in about 15-20 minutes under local anesthesia. First, the edges of the split earlobe are “freshened” by stripping the skin. Then, the edges are approximated with placement of stitches. Thin steri-strip tape is then applied for coverage.
Recovery is quick. Re-piercing can be performed in the office 6 weeks later. The re-piercing should be placed slightly adjacent to the scar but not within the scar because this is a weak point. If re-piercing is placed at the scar, there is greater risk for recurrence of the split earlobe.
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