A patient will present with an earlobe split by a sudden pull on an earring.
What to do:
Excise the skin edges on both sides of the wound, leaving the apical
epithelium intact. Suture these freshened wound edges together
using a fine monofilament material.
If the patient wants to maintain a pierced ear lobe, tie a loop of
sterile suture material through the hole to maintain a tract while the
rest of the lobe heals.
Provide tetanus prophylaxis if needed
What not to do:
Do not suture the wound primarily. The edges may epithelialize,
resulting in the split redeveloping after the sutures are removed.
There are many techniques for the repair of split earlobes. Some
methods, including this one, attempt to preserve the earring hole while
others use a Z-plasty on the free margins of the lobes to prevent
notching at the points of reunion. Depending on the specific
circumstances, it may be advisable to consult with a plastic surgeon
before attempting to repair this type of earlobe injury.