121 East 60th Street, Suite 8AB New York, NY 10022

Ph. (212) 285-1110

Garden City

901 Stewart Ave, Suite 240 Garden City, NY 11530

Ph. (516) 512-7616

New York City (212) 285-1110

Long Island (516) 512-7616

Earlobe Repair

Cosmetic surgery to repair a torn earlobe is a common procedure. Piercing an earlobe puts it at risk to tear. The size, style, and weight of an earring can contribute to the stretching of the earlobe opening. Large earrings that dangle can be caught on clothing or grasped by a child. The result may be a partially or completely torn earlobe. Repair of a torn earlobe occurs in the plastic surgery office setting using a local anesthetic. The procedure consists of “freshening” the edges of the split and placement of sutures to complete the repair of the earlobe.

Keloids are a common skincare issue on the ear lobes for African Americans and Hispanics. These scars can be surgically removed and treated with corticosteroid injections and pressure earrings, which can help prevent their recurrence.

Before & After Earlobe Repair treatment, ear, side view, patient 1

Torn Earlobe Repair Procedure

In most pierced ears, the pierced hole gradually enlarges over time. If it tears, the final tear is usually just through a tiny piece of tissue at the bottom of the lobe. In this case, an immediate repair will not take care of the skin covered slot, so reconstruction is delayed until after the wound has healed and inflammation has diminished. However, if the tear starts from a tiny pierced hole, immediate earlobe repair1 is an option in Long Island.

Depending on the deformity, reconstruction can take different forms. In all methods, the skin lining the slot is removed creating a raw edge to rebuild. When tissue has been lost, however, the procedure is more complicated, and reconstruction involves creating normal proportions around a somewhat small ear.

After Your Long Island Ear Lobe Repair Procedure

Sutures are removed 1 – 2 weeks after the repair procedure. A thin layer of antibiotic ointment is the only dressing applied in most cases. A little drainage from the wound is to be expected.

How soon can I wear earrings after surgery?

You should wait six months after surgery before wearing earrings. The scar should be soft before you get your lobe re-pierced, approximately three months after the earlobe repair2.

For more information visit the Torn Earlobe and Torn Earlobe Surgery Pages.

Earlobe Repair FAQ

What is a split earlobe?

It’s the separation of the ear’s skin from the joint of an ear-piercing down through the base of the earlobe. Heaving or dangling earring trauma is the most common causes of earlobe splits.

How is a split earlobe repaired?

An effective in-office surgery performed to restore the earlobe is the Z-plasty technique. This involves the wound being closed in a zig-zag fashion to strengthen the skin area from not splitting again.

Are stitches required for ear lobe repairs?

After the wound edges are freshened with open skin, small sutures stitched into the subcutaneous tissue on the surface of the skin, which can usually be taken out 7 to 10 days after the procedure. Barely noticeable, clear stitches are placed within the split in order to ensure proper healing and clean alignment.

How long does surgery last?

The amount of time the procedure takes depends on the length of the split and the amount of trauma to the skin tissue. If there are complexities aside from just the split ear, there may be extra precaution and time, although in general earlobe repair takes about one hour depending on the anatomy and structure prior to surgery.

Is earlobe repair painful?

Discomfort can be expected prior to surgery. Patients are prescribed a pain medication to ease the process, however, some use the prescription for 2 to 3 days afterward then switch to Extra Strength Tylenol.

How soon can I wash my hair after surgery?

Like any stitches, it is important to keep them dry, along with the steristrips for up to five days following the split ear repair. During this time, hair can be shampooed as long as caution is taken in the treated area. It is recommended to shower and shampoo properly prior to the appointment. Once the stitches are removed, the steristrips need to be reapplied and the area must again be kept dry five days afterward.

How soon can I wear earrings after surgery?

You should wait six months after surgery before wearing earrings. The scar should be soft before you get your lobe re-pierced, approximately three months after the earlobe repair.


Upper East Side Manhattan
121 East 60th Street, Suite 8AB New York, NY 10022
(212) 285-1110
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Garden City Long Island
901 Stewart Ave, Suite 240, Garden City, NY 11530
(516) 512-7616
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1 Earlobe Surgery: What You Need to Know. Available:
2 Cleft earlobe repair. Available:

About author - Dr. Cameron Rokhsar

Dr. Cameron Rokhsar

Dr. Cameron Rokhsar is the founder and owner of Cosmetic Laser Skin & Surgery Center. With degrees from Harvard University and NYU, along with multiple publications and media features, the board-certified dermatologist and laser surgeon proudly shares his expertise with patients in Garden City, Manhattan, and those who fly in to receive treatment at his offices. Dr. Rokhsar has worked extensively with Vbeam laser, Thermitight, Coolsculpting, and Fraxel laser technology, as well as Allergan and other injectable brands. He pioneered the Non-Surgical Nose Job and continues to be a leader in his field.

Learn more about Dr. Rokhsar | Dr. Rokhsar's Google Scholar

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