METHODS FOR RESTORING THE APPEARANCE OF THE EAR, FROM SIMPLE PROCEDURES TO FULL RECREATION
BY AMANDA McCOY
Roman Rayham, MD, a double board certified plastic and reconstructive surgeon and the hands behind RR Plastix NY Plastic Surgery Center in Sheeps head Bay, has been practicing the art of cosmetic and reconstructive procedures in Brooklyn, Manhattan, and Staten Island for over a decade. In addition to medical education and residency training, Rayham has achieved certification in plastic and reconstructive surgery from the Mayo Clinic and completed a one-year fellowship in aesthetic plastic surgery at New York Eye and Ear Infirmary. His emphasis is on employing knowledge of facial anatomy and surgical experience to offer patients what he terms “a gentle and creative approach to cosmetic procedures.” His practice offers treatments dealing with the face, breast, and body generally from surgical facelifts and rhino plasty to non-operative procedures like injectables and laser skin resurfacing.
An area of increasing concern to his patients in recent years has been the correction of gauged or torn earlobes.
“This has become a major portion of our practice,” he explained. “They’re performed to make the ear look normal, most of the time with no signs of any type of intervention. It’s typically a simple process, but one that provides a considerable amount of satisfaction.”
Interested patients come to Rayham’s office for a variety of reasons. He’s seen, he said, mothers and grandmothers who had earrings ripped out by toddlers, older patients who have been wearing heavy earrings for decades, and people who have stretched their lobes with gauges for long periods of time. The goal is to eliminate signs of wear, tear, and stretching.
“People will come in and get this done in an hour,” he said. “In a week, they look at their earlobes and notice all those years of stretching are gone. They look natural…normal. I’ve seen ladies come in and say their daughter’s wedding is coming up and they can’t wear these nice earrings because their earlobes hang too low. We’re able to fix that.”
Depending on the condition of the ear, Rayham can utilize various methods to reconstruct the lobe. Correction typically requires local anesthesia only, between 20 and 60 minutes to complete, and doesn’t involve extensive or painful recovery periods.
“There’s no need to go to sleep; it’s in and out,” he said. “In a week we take the stitches out. In another week, the earlobes look back to normal. A few months down the road, and we will pierce the ears ourselves.”
Torn or stretched lobes aren’t the only area of concern. Rayham also performs earlobe size reductions and ear tuck operations to minimize “prominent” (protruding) ears. “For children or adults who have this procedure done, it allows them to wear their hair back and feel good about themselves,” he said.
In rare cases, Rayham has also seen patients with microtia (also called “micro ear”), a congenital deformity of the outer ear in which it does not fully develop during pregnancy. To address this, the surgeon extracts cartilage from the rib to create a new ear for the child. It’s complex, and requires several surgeries to complete, but in the end, the patient’s hearing and appearance can be completely restored.
Dr. Roman Rayham
RR Plastix NY Surgery Center / 2748 Ocean Ave 3rd Floor, Brooklyn, NY 11229 / 718.354.8572
161 Madison Avenue, Suite 11W, Manhattan / 718.354.8572 / rrplastix.com