photo courtesy of

photo courtesy of

In recent years, statement jewelry has been quite the rage. In particular, colossal hoop and dangle earrings are a wardrobe staple. While these pieces can certainly add “bling” to your get-up, they can also age and damage your earlobes.

As we age, our skin loses elasticity and volume…becoming thinner and saggier. Earrings bearing significant weight can speed up this process causing the earlobe to droop and the actual piercing to elongate. With time, the piercing becomes more susceptible to tearing.

While simply rejuvenating the ear is a proactive and relatively low-cost procedure, actually repairing a torn earlobe is a bit more involved. Both procedures, however, are relatively straightforward and can be performed in an office setting.

Thin and aged earlobes can greatly benefit from dermal fillers such as Belotero, Perlane or Juvederm. In less than an hour, thin earlobes can be plumped. The additional volume provided by the dermal filler creates the support needed for an earring to remain in its ideal position. The cost of non-surgical earlobe rejuvenation starts around $600. No downtime is required. Keep in mind that fillers are only a temporary fix, lasting up to 2 years depending on the type of filler administered.

For patients concerned more with sagging of the lobes, a “lobe-lift” may be the best solution. With this procedure, excess skin is surgically excised allowing for a lifted effect. The incision is typically placed behind the earlobe and local anesthesia is all that is required.

For patients who have experienced a simple tear of the earlobe, a basic repair surgery is all that is needed. Local anesthesia is applied to the affected area. Then, the two halves are reconnected and approximated with fine sutures which reset the earlobe to a more natural position. Should the patient choose to wear earrings again, they must wait 6 to 12 weeks following the procedure to re-pierce the lobes.

The cost to repair torn earlobes or remove sagging lobe skin varies by surgeon and by region ranging from $350 for simple tears up to $1500 for more complex procedures.

While many options are available for those unsatisfied with the condition of their lobes, the best advice is to avoid heavy earrings altogether. If you cannot avoid oversized hoops altogether, at least wear them sparingly.

Our board certified surgeons offer ear rejuvenation and repair procedures in an accredited office surgery suite using sedation and local anesthesia. Call (423) 648-4011 to schedule a complimentary consultation!