Can My Big Earlobes Be Made Smaller?

Q: Dr. Eppley, I have two large earlobes and would like for them to be smaller. They seem to be getting bigger as I get older. I am now 57 years of age and I don’t think they were this big when I was younger. Do earlobes grow as one ages? I am also wondering about the cost for this type of earlobe surgery. Could I get an estimate and would any permanent scars result from it? Also how long does it take to heal or until I can take the bandages off? Thank you very much for your time.

A: Earlobes do in fact grow with age somewhat although not in the classic sense of growth. They do not grow anymore than your sagging jowls and neck grows. Rather it is an elongation process where the tissues stretch due to gravity and ear ring wear. As the earlobe is the only part of the ear that does not contain cartilage, the skin and fat has no resistant internal structure. Earlobe reduction is an office procedure done under local anesthesia. There are different earlobe reduction techniques that vary only in where the final scars are located. The scar locations can be down the central area of the earlobe, at the junction of the earlobe and the face, and along the bottom rim of the earlobe. Which one is best depends on the shape of your earlobe and where you would prefer the scar. There really is no recovery after this procedure nor are they any bandages used afterwards.

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis, Indiana