Ear lacerations are commonly encountered from trauma, often related to sporting injuries or animal bites. If they occur in the workplace, they are usually considered to be work-related injury. Read more about our Workers Compensation Plastic Surgeon.
Expedient wound care and closure ensures the best outcome. Treatment may include simple cleaning and bandaging of the laceration or repair with sutures (“stitches”). If the cartilage is involved, absorbable sutures are placed in the cartilage to repair the defect. Complicated ear lacerations may require plastic surgery. Ear lacerations should be repaired within 12 hours to prevent infection. While waiting for treatment, the laceration can be cleaned with running water and covered with gauze or a clean cloth. Pressure on the wound can be applied to stop bleeding. If the bleeding is profuse consider calling 911. A tetanus shot may be recommended, depending on when the last vaccination was received.