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A torn earlobe can initially be painful, and then become a cosmetic reminder of the injury to your ear. A torn earlobe may be something that keeps you from looking and feeling like the best version of yourself. A split earlobe can be caused by a traumatic incident or simply by wearing heavy earrings. No matter the cause of your torn earlobe, Dr. Michele Green in NYC can perform a quick, easy earlobe repair surgery – with just a few sutures and can restore the appearance of your earlobes and your self-esteem. It is important to be selective when looking for a medical professional to perform your earlobe repair procedure. It’s best to consult a board-certified plastic surgeon or board-certified dermatologist, like Dr. Green, for your earlobe repair in order to avoid unwanted side effects such as infection, pain, and accumulation of scar tissue. Additionally, earlobe tears can be worsened due to the natural decrease in collagen production that is a part of the aging process. Dr. Green is an expert at suturing tears that occur in the earlobe, repairing any damage, and ensuring that patients who are interested in having their ears re-pierced can do so at her office in as few as six weeks.

In addition to her ability to effectively suture torn earlobes, Dr. Green is an expert in all forms of earlobe rejuvenation. For patients experiencing sagging skin that is preventing them from wearing heavier earrings, Dr. Green offers dermal fillers to boost collagen production and provide additional support to the skin. Scarring, as a result of facelift surgery or ear piercings, can also occur on the earlobe but can be ameliorated in Dr. Green’s office with the help of laser treatments, dermal fillers, or cortisone injections – depending on the type of scar. When you begin your consultation with Dr. Green, she will assess the damage and treatment area to determine the treatment, or series of treatments, that will be best to meet your needs.

Dr. Michele Green is an experienced, board-certified dermatologist who has been expertly treating patients in her Upper East Side New York City office for more than 25 years. Frequently voted as one of the best dermatologists in New York City, Dr. Green excels at a number of medical and cosmetic treatments, including Dermal Fillers injections, Botox, laser treatments, chemical peels and other means of facial rejuvenation. When you work with Dr. Green, you will have the opportunity to discuss your specific skin concerns and develop a customized treatment plan that meets your needs and aesthetic goals.

Before & After of Earlobe repair – 3 months

What Causes a Torn Earlobe?

There are many potential causes of torn earlobes ranging from accidental damage, to age-related collagen loss, to deliberate stretching of the earlobe. Patients with traditionally pierced ears run the risk of damaging or tearing the earlobe by wearing heavy earrings that can stretch the delicate thin skin of the earlobe, making it more vulnerable to trauma. Further any accidental catching and pulling of an earring – such as having it pulled by a child or caught on an article of clothing – can tear the piercing hole further or can cause the earlobe to rip all the way through. In such cases, repair to the earlobe will require suturing the wound. Other patients simply have sagging or drooping earlobes due to age and the natural loss of collagen over time. By restoring this lost volume in the earlobes through the injection of dermal fillers such as Restylane® and Juvederm®, the earlobe is rejuvenated and it is easier to wear your earrings sitting properly on your ear.

Outside of accidental injury, it has become fashionable over the years to stretch the earlobe to insert larger ear ornaments such as “flesh tunnels” and “flesh plugs” within the earlobe itself. The practice, also known as gauging, causes an increasingly larger sized hole to form over time. At the earlier stages of this process, the hole can be reversed. However, as the hole in the earlobe increases in size, it becomes increasingly difficult to reverse. In these cases, the size of the hole in question will determine how best to repair the torn earlobe.

Can a torn earlobe be repaired?

While ripping the earlobe can be painful and traumatic, the torn earlobe can be repaired by an expert dermatologist, such as Dr. Michele Green. Dr. Green uses the best cosmetic surgical techniques and dermal fillers to perform your torn earlobe repair and rejuvenate your torn or sagging earlobes. With Dr. Green performing the suture, the repair is clean and the wound generally heals into a small, fine scar. Further, six weeks following the treatment, patients can return to Dr. Green’s office to have the earlobe pierced again. Having Dr. Green perform the re-piercing ensures that the new piercing hole is the proper distance away from the repaired rip so as not to cause any further damage to the ear.

How to fix a torn earlobe

The earlobe tear can be repaired through an in-office surgical procedure where the scarred area of the earlobe is removed, and fine sutures are used to stitch up the hole. A tear can occur for a number of reasons and can vary in severity from a small tear as a result of frequently wearing heavy earrings or an acute event such as snagging an earring on clothing and tearing the lobe. While small tears may be able to heal on their own, the potential for thick scar tissue is high if a suture is not done by a healthcare professional. Failing to properly repair the tear may result in an inability to re-pierce the lobe and unsightly scarring. As such, the earlobe repair should be performed by an experienced plastic surgeon or dermatologist, such as Dr. Green.

To repair the torn earlobe, Dr. Green will start by removing the skin that surrounds the rip. This allows for a cleaner edge by which Dr. Green can perform the fine stitches. For some more severe cases, there may need to be a redistribution of the earlobe skin in order to properly and neatly repair the rip. Dr. Green will make a determination of what method is necessary for your earlobe repair during your initial consultation appointment.

How to repair an earlobe split

An earlobe split, which occurs when an accident causes the earlobe to tear all the way through, can be repaired by suturing the skin together. This occurs most commonly during an acute incident such as a child pulling on a dangling earring or an earring gets caught in an article of clothing. An earlobe split can also occur when when from heaving earrings worn repeatedly over time causes the delicate earlobe to tear.

An earlobe that has completely ripped will be more involved to repair and may take longer. Your earlobe will be numbed with a local anesthetic prior to the earlobe repair. Dr. Green will remove the skin surrounding the rip in order to create clean edges, at which point she will then be able to suture the edges back together. After the stitches are removed, it will likely take approximate six weeks for the wound to heal fully and most patients will be left with a fine scar.

What does the Earlobe Repair Procedure entail?

Torn earlobe repair is a simple in-office procedure performed by a board-certified dermatologist, such as Dr. Green. You will begin with a consultation appointment during which Dr. Green will assess the damage done to the earlobe and the best course of action for treatment. Dr. Green will take photographs of the torn earlobe to be used in your file before the repair takes place.

The procedure itself is simple and relatively quick to perform, and requires no sedation, rather Dr. Green will apply a local anesthesia to numb any potential pain. Dr. Green will then repair the torn or ripped earlobe by removing the scar tissue lining the tear and then suturing the wound together. The specific procedure used by Dr. Green to suture the tear will depend on the severity of the rip – whether the ear has been lightly torn or ripped all the way through. For patients with sagging earlobes, Dr. Green may employ the use of dermal fillers such as Juvederm or Restylane in order to lift and fortify the lobe.

Following the treatment, Dr. Green will review the proper post-op care. Most patients do not require any special prescription pain medication after the treatment, rather Dr. Green recommends easy to access over-the-counter medication such as Advil or Tylenol if patients are experiencing any pain after treatment. Two weeks after the procedure, patients should return to the office in order to have the stitches removed and four weeks after that, patients may return to have their ears re-pierced by Dr. Green.

How long does the torn earlobe repair take to perform?

In general, each torn earlobe repair takes 30 minutes to perform. The procedure may take longer if there is more than one tear or piercing which need to be repaired. We advise patients to refrain from swimming or saunas while the sutures and in place and the earlobe repair is healing for two weeks. Patients are sent home with written instructions on how to care for the surgical site. 

What are my wound care instructions after the torn earlobe repair?

Dr. Green will instruct you to apply antibiotic ointment, such as Bacitracin ointment, to the earlobe repair surgery. If the repair was extensive, she may have you take an oral antibiotic as well. You will be advised how to take care of the area and the use of over-the-counter steristrips. In addition, you should refrain from saunas, swimming, or submerging your head under water for the first week after the stitches are removed to allow the skin to heal from your surgical procedure.

What is the recovery time from a torn earlobe repair?

The recovery is straightforward and the earlobe repair surgery will start to heal with the sutures in place.  You should continue your topical wound care and antibiotics until the sutures are removed. The two weeks after torn earlobe surgery are the most important in terms of routine topical wound care, and patients must closely follow Dr. Green’s skin care instructions for the two weeks that the sutures are in place. Steri-strips are generally placed on the site after the stitches are removed until they fall off on their own. The earlobe continues to heal on its own for several months.

When can I re-pierce my ears after an earlobe repair?

In addition to performing the earlobe repair procedure, Dr. Michele Green will have your return to her private NYC office for re-piercing the ear in the correct location, generally six weeks after the cosmetic surgery. One of the advantages of having Dr. Green perform your ear piercing is that Dr. Green ensures the correct placement of the new piercing.  Dr. Green will make sure that it is in the exact location and completely symmetric with the opposite ear. Earlobes are re-pierced only after the surgical area has completely healed from the earlobe repair procedure. 

Once Dr. Green re-pierces your ears, she will advise you to wear small earrings which have posts, similar to the stud earrings that you used to first pierce your ears. You should also refrain from wearing hanging, wires, hoops, or heavy earrings. The new skin which was repaired will be weaker than normal skin for at least three months as the area heals and new collagen is formed.


How to treat sagging earlobes

To treat drooping or sagging earlobes, Dr. Green often recommends Restylane or Juvederm injections in order to rejuvenate them. Using these hyaluronic acid fillers can help lift sagging earlobes and can provide more durability to take on heavy earrings. Hyaluronic acid fillers are a useful revitalization tool for the earlobes, as they use a naturally-occurring substance in the body – hyaluronic acid – to stimulate collagen production. This in turn is able to rejuvenate the skin of the earlobes, improving elasticity offering greater strength to this area of tissue.

In most cases, these “earlobe rejuvenation” or “lobe lift” treatments only take a few minutes, and there is no downtime or recovery.  Often, these earlobe injections are combined with other facial injections to create a non-surgical or “liquid facelift“. This facial rejuvenation can also be combined with chemical peels, fractionated lasers, and other cosmetic procedures.

How much does it cost to repair a torn earlobe?

The price for a torn earlobe repair depends on the extent of the repair involved. A complicated repair is more expensive than a simple earlobe repair. In addition, if both earlobes are involved, the cost for the surgical procedure increases. If you’re curious how much does it cost to fix a split earlobe, the answer will vary based on the severity of the split. However, for most patients, the cost of earlobe repair varies between $1,000 and $3,000 depending on the expertise of the dermatologist performing the surgery, as well as the complexity of the reconstructive surgery.

Does insurance cover split earlobe repair?

Though a torn earlobe can be a frustrating experience for many patients, the surgery for split earlobe repair is considered a cosmetic condition, and therefore is not covered by health insurance. However, in the case of keloid scarring, insurance companies may cover the excision of the scar. If you think you may qualify for insurance coverage for your split earlobe repair, it is best to directly contact your health care insurance company.

What other plastic surgery procedures involve torn earlobe repair?

Facelifts often involve correcting the earlobe as well. Many patients who are having a full facelift, facial plastic surgery, or rhinoplasty will choose to have earlobe repair surgery performed at the same time. Some patients, it should be noted, are unhappy with the shape of their earlobes after a facelift, as the position of the ear can sometimes be affected. After surgery, there may be notching at the base of the earlobe, without the normal curved arch. These patients may need a more complicated otoplasty or other surgical repair in addition to a face or neck lift.

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What can be done to fix scars behind your ears from a facelift?

Plastic surgery is often an excellent method for facial rejuvenation but, to many patients’ dismay, can leave behind some unsightly scars. Whether an individual has a scar from having an ear surgery or other type of reconstructive surgery, such as a facelift, neck lift, rhinoplasty, eyelid surgery, skin cancer removal, or liposuction, Dr. Green can help. Dr. Green offers numerous non-invasive cosmetic solutions for effectively and safely reducing the appearance of surgical scars. With over 25 years of experience providing the best treatments in cosmetic dermatology, Dr. Green uses the most cutting-edge methods and the latest in skin resurfacing laser technology. Fraxel, V-Beam, and eMatrix are among Dr. Green’s favorite laser treatments for diminishing the appearance of surgical scars.

The Fraxel Dual laser is an innovative skin resurfacing laser treatment that is often referred to by Dr. Green as the “magic eraser” for its unique ability to target a wide range of skin concerns. The Fraxel laser treatment is able to effectively reduce the appearance of hyperpigmentation, acne scars, fine lines and wrinkles, enlarged pores, and surgical scars. The combination of two different wavelengths, the 1927 and 1550, allow the Fraxel laser to be useful in treating a myriad of issues, including surgical scars on various areas of the body. There is minimal downtime associated with having a Fraxel procedure, meaning scheduling a treatment session can be done with ease.

The eMatrix sublative rejuvenation laser is another excellent treatment option for eliminating surgical scars, as well as minimizing acne scars, stretch marks, and other irregularities of skin texture. The eMatrix treatment uses bi-polar radiofrequency energy to heat the skin deep within the dermis, while preserving the top layers of the skin. The application of heat stimulates collagen production, resulting in a smoother, clearer skin surface. Additionally, the eMatrix is safe for use on patients of all skin types and skin tones, making it a safe and efficacious treatment option for diverse patients with surgical scars.

Sometimes surgical scars appear to be red in color. For these scars, the V-Beam laser is considered to be the gold standard treatment. This laser treatment operates on a wavelength that targets any red pigment in the skin, making it an ideal treatment option for not just surgical scars, but also rosacea, post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation, stretch marks, broken capillaries, and more. The V-Beam treatment does not require any downtime whatsoever, and as an added bonus, contains a patented Dynamic Cooling Device, or DCD. The DCD releases a cool burst before delivering the laser beam to the skin, making the treatment very comfortable for the patient- so much so, that no anesthetic is required. No matter what your surgical scar looks like, Dr. Green has a non-invasive treatment option for you.

How do I treat keloid scars on my earlobes?

Depending on the size of your keloids, it may require surgery to remove the keloid. Keloids are a hereditary form of raised scar tissue that can develop due to injuries to the skin, such as an ear piercing. Typically, patients with darker skin tones are more prone to developing keloids. These keloids typically grow behind the ears and are a result of ear piercing. Smaller keloid scars may be able to be treated with cortisone injections alone to shrink them. Dr. Green also recommends using Kelo-cote topically for these keloid scars.

If you develop keloid scars due to an ear piercing, intralesional cortisone injections into the earlobe may be right for you. Cortisone injections are able to reduce the scar tissue within the ear, helping to flatten the scar and reduce the overall appearance of the keloid. Additionally, if you experience redness or discoloration due to keloids, Dr. Green may recommend the V-Beam® laser. The V-Beam laser is a gentle skin resurfacing laser that works to reduce redness on the surface of the skin, and is an excellent treatment for patients dealing with keloids, rosacea, prominent veins, acne scars, or facial redness. It’s an excellent way treat the redness of this type of scar without the need for downtime.

Gauge earrings and repair of stretched earlobe

Gauge earrings are a popular trend in which the skin of the earlobe is stretched around a small ring, called a gauge. When you gauge the ears, the earlobe skin is weakened, which can lead to damage of the ears. Though smaller gauges can be removed and the earlobe will be restored to its previous size, larger gauges often lead to permanently stretched earlobes, with holes that are too large to support traditional earrings. Earlobe stretching can also occur through consistent use of heavy earrings, as well as continually sleeping with earrings in well after the piercing is fully established.

In order to reduce the appearance of gauged or stretched earlobes, a much more complicated repair is required that includes earlobe reduction surgery. This earlobe reduction surgery will involve an incision in the crease between the earlobe and cheek, removal of the overstretched tissue of the earlobe, and fine sutures to reconnect the earlobe. In the case of this more complicated surgery, it is vital that you work with an experienced earlobe repair healthcare professional to achieve your desired results.

Will a split earlobe repair itself?

Unfortunately, when it comes to torn earlobes, split earlobes, and stretched earlobes, the earlobe is quite unlikely to heal on its own. In some cases, patients may opt to live with a minor tear in the earlobe, provided it isn’t impacting their daily life. However, for many, a torn earlobe can be a very frustrating or uncomfortable experience. Torn earlobe repair is the best solution to promote healing within the skin of the earlobe, and to prevent unwanted scarring or damage to the earlobe.

How long does a torn earlobe take to heal?

Following the earlobe repair treatment, it can take several weeks for the wound to heal properly. Two weeks after the treatment, patients will return to Dr. Green’s office to have the stitches removed. Only once the wound has fully healed, generally six weeks after the earlobe repair procedure, will Dr. Green invite patients back to have their ear re-pierced. It is important to wait until the earlobe is fully healed before re-piercing the ear in order to avoid further injury to the lobe.

How to heal a ripped earlobe at home

If you are dealing with a torn earlobe, you should not attempt to repair the earlobe tear at home. For patients who experience a tear in the earlobe due to traumatic incident, injury, or sudden pulling or a rip, it’s best not to apply ice or a cold compress directly to the skin of the wound, as this can restrict circulation and may lead to a delay in the healing process. Instead, it’s better to place gauze over the wound, apply a cool compress, and seek treatment from a healthcare professional in a medical setting. Dr. Green has had success repairing a variety of torn earlobes ,and the safety and satisfaction of her patients is her top priority. 

Can you glue a split earlobe?

It is not recommended under any circumstance that a patient glue a split earlobe in an attempt to repair it. The safety and efficacy of any treatment should always be considered, and gluing a split earlobe is not necessarily safe nor effective. Applying glue of any kind to a split earlobe puts patients at high risk of developing an infection and may prevent proper healing. If you are seeking a solution to a torn or split earlobe, it’s best to consult with a board-certified plastic surgeon or dermatologist, such as Dr. Michele Green in NYC. Dr. Green is an expert who will be able to carefully and artfully repair your torn earlobe. Working with Dr. Green to restore your earlobes guarantees that you are able to avoid risking infection or other unwanted side effects.

How to fix a split earlobe without surgery

Unfortunately, if your earlobe has split, the tear will need to be repaired with a surgical procedure. The surgery is quick, comfortable, does not require significant downtime, and will not interfere with your normal activities. Although reconstructive surgery may sound somewhat intimidating, it is actually the safest and most effective way to fix a split earlobe. Entrusting an experienced and skilled board-certified plastic surgeon or board-certified dermatologist, such as Dr. Green in NYC, will guarantee you have ideal cosmetic results while avoiding unwanted side effects such as scarring or infection. If your earlobes are not split but have become stretched due to collagen loss, Dr. Green can restore the appearance and strength of your earlobe tissue through the use of dermal filler injections. Hyaluronic acid dermal filler products, such as Restylane and Juvederm, are commonly used to rejuvenate the appearance of a sagging earlobe. Consulting with Dr. Green is the best way to determine which kind of earlobe restoration procedure would be best-suited to you.


Can a ripped earring hole be fixed?

Yes! A ripped earring hole can be an annoyance and may be something that is keeping you from feeling and looking like the best version of yourself. Luckily, a quick in-office surgical procedure can be done to fix the ripped earring hole and restore your self-confidence. Dr. Green in NYC is a board-certified dermatologist with extensive experience repairing torn earlobes, whether the split was caused by a traumatic incident or as a result of wearing heavy earrings or gauges. Usually, patients who undergo earlobe repair surgery have a quick recovery time and don’t need to take any time away from other responsibilities to accommodate downtime. Most patients resume their usual daily activities immediately after completion of the ear lobe repair procedure. Dr. Green will provide you with detailed aftercare instructions following your ear lobe repair to ensure that you get the best cosmetic results from treatment.

How to fix a split ear hole in NYC

If a heavy earring or a gauge has caused your earlobe to split, a board-certified dermatologist or plastic surgeon can help you fix it. In New York City, Dr. Michele Green is an authority in the field of cosmetic dermatology. Dr. Green is consistently voted as one of the city’s best physicians by Super Doctors, New York Magazine, The New York Times, and Castle Connolly. She is well known for her precision and practiced hand in many cosmetic dermatological procedures, including ear lobe repair, with over 25 years of experience treating some of the most discerning men and women from around the world. During your consultation with Dr. Green in her private dermatology office in NYC, you will have the opportunity to highlight your specific cosmetic concerns and develop a treatment plan and timeline that work best for you and your goals. If a split earlobe is of concern to you, Dr. Green can fix it.

Who performs the torn earlobe repair?

In her private dermatology office located in the Upper East Side neighborhood of Manhattan, Dr. Michele Green regularly performs torn earlobe repair procedures. It is important to select a skilled and experienced board-certified dermatologist or plastic surgeon to execute your torn earlobe repair. This will ensure that your earlobe repair surgery is done safely and that your cosmetic results are optimal. Dr. Green has over two decades of experience repairing torn earlobes, and the combination of her artistic background, careful surgical repair, and patient adherence to proper post-procedure skin care produces superlative results and a quick recovery.

How do I get started today with repairing my torn earlobe?

If you’re bothered by a partially split earlobe, a complete earlobe tear, or keloid scarring, Dr. Michele Green is here to help. Whether the look of your earlobe has been affected by an injury, wearing gauges, or heavy earrings, Dr. Green can repair your earlobe in a quick and simple outpatient procedure that allows you to resume your normal activities the very same day. Dr. Green is an internationally renowned cosmetic dermatologist with over 25 years of experience providing the best in non-invasive treatments, including earlobe repair. She is consistently voted as one of the best physicians in New York City by Castle Connolly, The New York Times, Super Doctors, and New York Magazine. The safety and satisfaction of her patients is always Dr. Green’s top priority, and she will take the time to develop a treatment plan for you that centers your specific concerns and aesthetic goals. To schedule a consultation with Dr. Green and learn more about earlobe repair, please call our NYC office at 212-535-3088 or contact us online.

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