What is earlobe reduction?
The size and shape of the ears play a key role in the overall balance of one’s facial features. Excessively long earlobes may contribute to a person looking much older than they actually are. Long earlobes may also have a dragging effect on the face which can negatively influence the impression of youthfulness. Whilst the genetic factors may contribute to the appearance of excessively large earlobes, earlobes may also stretch under the influence of heavy jewellery or traumatic injury. At Centre for Surgery, our surgeons are experienced in the full range of ear surgery including otoplasty or ear pinning surgery for the correction of overly prominent ears, split earlobe repair and earlobe reduction surgery. If the appearance of your excessively large earlobes bothers you, earlobe reduction or earlobe lift is a highly effective treatment to permanently reduce the size of the earlobes with a quick and straightforward surgical procedure.
Am I suitable for earlobe reduction?
Ideal candidates for earlobe reduction include both women and men who are concerned about the appearance of prominent or overly long earlobes and are keen to improve their cosmetic appearance. Earlobe reduction surgery is ideal for stretched ear lobes, excessively long earlobes and correction of a pixie ear deformity from previous facelift surgery. Pixie ears are used to describe earlobes that have excessive attachments to the side of the head and may also be related to genetics.
Patients considering earlobe reduction should be in overall good health with no significant medical conditions such as uncontrolled diabetes or severe hypertension. It is important to have realistic expectations of what can be achieved with earlobe surgery. As part of the consultation, your surgeon will perform precise measurements of your ears and earlobes to determine the appropriate technique for reducing the size of large earlobes. The position of the incisions will be shown to you to give an idea of where the final scar placement will be.
What does earlobe reduction involve?
Earlobe reduction is a minor surgical procedure most commonly carried out as an outpatient at our Baker Street clinic in central London. Once you are lying down comfortably, the surgeon will clean and drape the area to maintain sterility. An injection of local anaesthetic will then be used to numb the earlobes. Once the surgeon has precisely measured the amount of tissue needed for removal, the incision will be made. The incisions for earlobe reduction are most commonly placed in the crease between the face and the ear lobe or at the lowermost part of the ear lobe to ensure any scars are barely noticeable. Once the desired amount of tissue has been removed and the earlobes have been checked for symmetry, the incisions will be closed using dissolvable stitches. A sterile dressing will then be applied. You will be reviewed by a postoperative nurse at one week after your procedure. At this appointment, the incision sites will be reviewed to ensure healing is progressing smoothly. There is little or no downtime after earlobe reduction surgery and patients are able to return to their normal everyday activities immediately after the procedure.
Top tips for earlobe reduction recovery
- Over-the-counter painkillers such as paracetamol can be taken as required after the procedure if you experience discomfort.
- You should try to sleep with your head elevated on a couple of pillows as this will help in speeding up the resolution of swelling.
- Avoid disrupting the tape dressing which has been applied to your incisions until it has been removed at your one-week post-operative appointment.
- Avoid applying moisturising agents or topical ointment on the incision until you have been reviewed at your post-operative appointment.
- It is normal to experience itchiness at the incision sites after a few days and this is an early sign of wound healing.
- If you have had permanent stitches inserted, these will be removed approximately 10 days after your surgery.
- If you have had an earlobe piercing carried out at the same time as your earlobe surgery, the front and back of the piercing site should be cleaned with an alcohol swab twice a day for two weeks.
- If you have any questions or concerns about your healing and recovery after earlobe reduction, please get in touch with our post-operative nursing team for further advice.
How much does earlobe reduction cost?
The price of earlobe reduction will depend on whether you are having one or both ears treated. Treatment of one ear costs £900 and £1400 for both ears.
The cost of treatment includes theatre fees, surgical fees and post-operative nursing care.
Is earlobe reduction painful?Earlobe reduction is associated with minimal discomfort. The procedure is most commonly performed using a local anaesthetic as an outpatient. The injection of local anaesthetic will involve a minor stinging sensation which lasts no more than 10 seconds. Once the earlobe is fully numbed, you should not feel any pain. It's common to experience a mild tugging sensation during earlobe reduction. Any discomfort after surgery can be easily controlled with paracetamol.
When earlobe reduction is performed as part of a facelift procedure, a general anaesthetic is preferred. Any discomfort felt after the procedure is most commonly related to the facelift surgery with mild to moderate discomfort that is well controlled with prescription painkillers.