Cartilage Piercing Ok After Otoplasty?

3 years ago i had a octoplasy on both ears and they both healed without any problems.. but i want to have my helix (rim of ear cartilage) pierced.. would it be ok to have it done? or would it go wrong? would the scar tissue react badly?? please help!

Doctor Answers 4

Cartilage Piercing After Otoplasty

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Many otoplasty procedures have permanent sutures around the helix and anti-helix to help develop the antihelical fold.  The suture can be quite close to the rim.  The biggest theoretic issue is introducing an infection on a permanent suture through a helical piercing.  Some surgeons use scoring techniques as well.  If a piercing enters a hits an already weak cartilage, there is a risk, albeit low of fracturing the ear and changing the appearance of the outer rim.

Overall message, more than likely you will be alright but check with your surgeon on acceptable position for ear piercing.  

Chicago Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 181 reviews

Is it ok to pierce cartilage after otoplasty...

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Otoplasy is a wonderful procedure for reshaping the ears.  Once the results have healed into place, the cartilage should maintain the position forever.  Theoretically, after 2 months it is safe to pierce your helix; however, there is no guarantee it won't cause a problem.  Piercing through the cartilage always has a higher risk for infection.  Also, the piercing could accidentally cut through one of the sutures in the ear which could reverse the nice result.  If you must have it done, be sure to go to a piercing place that uses sterile techniques and has a good reputation.

Andrew Miller, MD
Edison Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 222 reviews

Piercing Ears after Otoplasty Surgery?

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At this point, your previous otoplasty should not pose a problem with  obtaining a piercing. Make your choices carefully remembering that your aesthetic tastes may change with time.

Best wishes.


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I'm not much of a "piercing" fan, but after three years from an otoplasty and you have no problems: It is up to you!

Robert Shumway, MD
San Diego Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.