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 Supersize earrings are damaging women's earlobes, warn doctors

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PostSubject: Supersize earrings are damaging women's earlobes, warn doctors   Tue Feb 03, 2009 10:19 am

Supersize earrings are damaging women's earlobes, warn doctors

By Rebecca Camber
Last updated at 10:22 PM on 01st February 2009



Kate Beckinsale sported some long earrings at the Golden Globes

They are intended to make a girl stand out from the crowd. But the trend for supersized earrings is causing some fashion conscious women to be noticed for all the wrong reasons, doctors warn.

They say the heavy accessories, worn by the likes of Beyoncé Knowles, Kate Beckinsale and Michelle Obama, can seriously damage earlobes, leaving unsightly scars.

This is because they can make the holes from piercing stretch, causing damage to the soft flesh which does not heal. In extreme cases the lobe can even split in two.

No longer just the preserve of Pat Butcher, long dangly earrings up to 15cm long have become a firm red carpet favourite.

Michelle Obama wore a shoulder-skimming pair for the presidential inauguration balls.

Kate Beckinsale sported some so long at the Golden Globes that they extended past her jaw and Kate Winslet's 7cm drop pair sparkled at the Screen Actors Guild awards.

Statement earrings have also swung down the catwalk, with Louis Vuitton unveiling a pair of 15cm wood and resin earrings known as 'Madmax' which are due to go on sale in the UK later this month for £580 a pair.

New York designer Zac Posen has also recently showcased a range of earrings so long that they wound round the neck.
The problem is that ear lobes are not designed to withstand the weight of such heavy furniture.

Wearing heavy earrings can cause the holes from piercing to stretch, causing damage to the soft flesh which does not heal.

In extreme cases the lobe can even split in two.


Kate Winslet's 7cm drop pair sparkled at the Screen Actors Guild awards

Plastic surgeons have reported a big increase in requests from women whose ears have split in two or sagged to the jawline under the weight.

Some women are even asking for pre-emptive surgery to strengthen their ears so they can wear this season's statement accessory.

The earlobe correction operation to stitch the lobe back together takes about 20 minutes under local anaesthetic and costs about £300 an ear.

The patient can have her ears repierced after about six weeks.

James McDiarmid, a consultant plastic surgeon based in Plymouth and Cheltenham, has carried out more than half a dozen earlobe repair procedures.

He said: 'Women are being damaged by fashion earrings. Usually we can refreshen the edges and put them back together and repair the ear front and back.

'It is not just splitting. The lobes swell and they have lumps the size of a marble that look like dumb bells on either side of the lobe.'

Surgery to strengthen the ears involves doctors injecting a synthetic compound called Restylane, usually used for lip augmentation, to plump up the earlobes and make them stronger.

The earlobes, which are injected after being frozen with a numbing gel, are left toughened for up to a year.


Doctors say long earrings like those worn by American first lady Michelle Obama at husband President Obama's inauguration can damage ears

David Gault, a London-based plastic surgeon who specialises in ear reconstruction, said: 'Pre-emptive operations could be done in the future using cartilage from within the ear and putting it on the lobe to strengthen it.'

Plastic surgeons have also seen increasing demand for surgery to repair scars from having piercings higher and higher on the ear rims.

Another popular complaint is called the 'Pixie ear', a sagging lobe problem when an earlier facelift has put tension on the skin and pulled down the earlobes.

Source: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1133403/Supersize-earrings-damaging-womens-earlobes-warn-doctors.html
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