Plastic surgery can repair stretched-out earlobes - FOX 35 News Orlando

Plastic surgery can repair stretched-out earlobes

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Ear plugs. We're not talking about the kind you wear to bed. We're talking about the kind people wear after they've purposely stretched out their earlobe to the size of their thumb or even fist.

Now some of them, who are in the job market, are turning to plastic surgery to repair the stretched-out earlobes.

Chances are, you've seen someone with these huge holes in their ears. What may have seemed cool to some in high school or college is now not so cool when they're trying to find jobs in the real world.

"I just thought they looked cool, thought they were fascinating."

Jamie Cremenas says he started stretching the holes in his ears when he was 13 or 14 years old.

"They have what are called tapers, it looks like a typical pencil. Goes small to large, and you push it through."

Now that he's older, Cremenas believes the holes and the plugs he wears in them are preventing him from being promoted at the restaurant where he works.

"Trying to get into management positions and they don't like it anymore."

Now, Cremenas wants to go into the army.

"They said straight up, you can't get in until you get them sewn up."

"What we want to do is try to close it obviously so it looks good," says Dr. Daniel Shapiro, Scottsdale plastic surgeon.

Dr. Daniel Shapiro is doing an earlobe reduction on Cremenas.

"Basically what we do here is allow this to contract down, take a look at it, probably cut part of this out then fold it back together again."

It's done under local anesthesia. Dr. Shapiro says it's not an uncommon procedure.

"There's definitely a science and an art to the way they do it," says Mandy Andrews, TNARG.

Mandy Andrews and her husband make plugs for the ear holes.

"This is a pretty big industry… we get requests all over the world, the U.S., from shops, from clients."

She admits the look might limit career options.

"If you're more creative – photography, music, that will be easier than your corporate job."

Does Cremenas regret getting this done?

"Yes and no, Yes because of the whole career and future aspect of it, but I do enjoy them."

Cremenas is getting his surgery in a month. He'll have stitches in both ears for a while and will be out about a week.

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