Ear and now

A Woman’s earlobes, while they may be small, have a significant impact on her appearance. Naturally occurring earlobes take on a variety of forms, sizes and shapes, and fall at differing heights and positions. They may be on the side of the face, but they are a prominent feature of the face, often enhanced with jewellery.

Ear piercing is one of the oldest and most popular forms of body modification and is an important cultural symbol in many regions of the world. In India, Hindu girls and boys have their ears pierced in a religious ceremony called Kharnavedha. The Karen women of Burma wear traditional ear plugs which stretch the lobe. Even Shakespeare was reputed to wear a small gold hoop earring.

Mr Shailesh Vadodaria is an expert in the repair of split, torn and stretched earlobes. Here, he answers some frequently asked questions about the procedure,

Aesthetic Medicine: Why Is earlobe repair performed?

Mr Shailesh Vadodaria: Whether through cultural or religious reasons, or through fashion choices, over time earlobes can become enlarged, stretched, widened or elongated and can even eventually split. Splits and tears can also occur as the result of trauma, for example where an earring becomes entangled in clothing or hair.

AM: How Is the repair carried out?

SV: The operation is almost always carried out under local anaesthetic and usually takes around 00 to 30 minutes. Apart from a slight degree of discomfort when the anaesthetic injection is administered, the entire procedure is pain free. The split is refreshed, which means that a clean cut is made to both sides, and the split is then stitched using dissolvable sutures. A stretched earlobe is treated similarly.

AM: flow long Is the healing process?

SV: Healing begins. occur within a week, with the stitches dissolving after around two weeks. There is no need to have the stitches removed; they dissolve on their own. After around three months, the area is usually fully healed.

AM: How does the earlobe look after the repair has healed?

SV: The size, shape and appearance of the earlobe is restored. The earlobe may then be re-pierced.

AM: What are the possible complications?

SV: As with any surgical procedure, complications can occur. These can include scarring, bleeding, infection, under correction, over correction, asymmetry and recurrence. Revisional surgery may be necessary.

AM: What is the cost of the surgery?

SV: The cost is about £500-£1,500 depending upon the split.

Shailesh Vadodaria is one of the UK’s leading cosmetic surgeons. He has authored than 50 papers In national and International plastic surgical congresses and regularly provides his expertise to the media. Mr Vadodaria Is a Lecturer at the Institute of Cosmetic and Reconstructive Surgery and Consultant Plastic Surgeon. Mr Vadodaria regularly appears in the media to provide expert opinions, and has featured in Channel 4’s ‘Embarrassing bodies’, Cosmopolitan, Marta Claire magazine end Reuters documentaries amongst others.

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