From 6mm lobes to 6mm lobes – a tale of irony.
This all started way back in 2010 when I discovered that I had far too much scar tissue to stretch my ears properly, from years of mistreating them. It took me a while but I found a gentleman who was apparently proficient in ear lobe scalpelling; my first scalpelling experience is covered in in this experience from 2011.
After that I really should have known something was wrong because we both ended up with acrylic in our freshly cut lobes.
After a few months being at 10mm, I decided that I wanted to be bigger and consulted Dan again on possibly going to 20mm; he said it was not a problem and totally doable but I had to wait longer for them to heal more. This was fine; I needed to save up any way.
A few weeks before Christmas I had the money together and headed in; the short version of this is very simple.... everything went wrong!
1 – the jewellery was my own and wasn't autoclaved before use.
2 – the jewellery was not titanium.
3 – he didn't measure properly to make sure my ears were the right shape and size to take 20mm.
4 – the same scalpel was used on both earlobes.
5 – an acrylic taper was used instead of a large gauge titanium insertion pin.
6 – he used an unclean, non sterile set of clamps which he retrieved from a waterbath containing other clamps and my previous jewellery.
7 – not enough tissue was cut on my left ear and too much pressure was added while using the taper, causing the already healed skin from my previous stretching and cutting, to split open and swell.
I think that about covers that part. You can see the video of my second scalpelling here:
The after effects of this horror story happened over the course of the run up to Christmas day. During the weeks following I was regularly back at the shop asking if everything was OK because something felt very wrong.
My right ear had a small area that worked as a “hinge” from which a yellow green goo kept seeping out. The skin was going excessively dry on both ears and was peeling away in chunks (not flakes) and when I soaked them they smelled rotten. The left ear had split around the front and inside and was continuously bleeding or weeping. The bottom half of the lobe had gone hard and I didn't have any feeling in it at all. He kept telling me everything was fine, it was completely normal.
Luckily I got a second and third opinion. My doctor prescribed me strong antibiotics to get rid of the infection that was running through my right ear. I left the tunnels in long enough for that to clear up enough to not be an issue and then removed my tunnels. I was horrified at my lobes. The left was a terrible mess and poured blood as soon as the tunnel was removed. The right wasn't too bad but I will never forget the smell that filled the bathroom. I remember soaking my naked and bleeding lobes in a sea salt solution before spraying them with a dry iodine spray to try and stop them getting any worse.
Over a few months the left side healed itself. It was all pretty raw so it just knitted itself together. The right one wasn't quite the same; most of it had healed inside and only the small “hinge” area healed itself together.
I spent numerous times at the piercing shop afterwards. I eventually got my money back because I refused to have them re-cut (thankfully) and then had to see a plastic surgeon who refused to help me because it was apparently “self inflicted”, however he did write a report to the local health & safety for the area.
I had a vertical lobe piercing for a while until I was recommended to go see Paddy at Body Alter Body Modifications in Worksop, UK. I sent him a message along with pictures and the video link. I received a message back after a couple of days telling me he wanted to help me and that he was sorry I had been mutilated.
It took me a couple of months to get the money together for it and when the day came I was absolutely petrified but after seeing him face to face a lot of that faded away. I wasn't sure what he looked like but being faced with a tall gentleman who had a stretched lip piercing, large gauge nostrils, a mohawk and two healthy stretched lobes, I was instantly put at ease.
Paddy was a great help, he explained what he was going to do and that the video horrified him and everyone who had seen it. I signed a simple form and then laid out on a bed. I was draped with paper towels and sterile cloths and after a long hard show and tell of my ear to his wife (who runs the shop downstairs) and his tattooist (I forget their names; lovely people however) he sprays my ear with something so cold it hurt.
And then he started to cut away the scarred fistula. I can still feel that slicing, which seemed to take forever but in reality only took around ten minutes. If that. The stitches were worse. I have never in my life had stitches....ever.
“It'll be a pinching sensation.” he was right. It pinched... a lot. Three stitches on the front, two on the back and whatever it was he sprayed my lobe with had worn off about five minutes prior.
Strangely, my ear throbbed for a good while afterwards. The stitches were the dissolving kind and I was told to completely LITHA. Don't clean, don't touch and keep it as dry as possible to stop the stitches from dissolving sooner. Paddy didn't slice away the entire fistula; he left me with a small area of my lobe completely fine and in time I'd be able to put an earring in.
The stitches came out in day 3, day 5 and day 8 of healing or should that be night? I woke up in the morning and found them on my pillow. It was 6 weeks before I could attempt to put anything in it but I was happy to find I had a 3mm hole which I promptly filled with a small glass spiral. It fell out during the night after a week and on closer inspection wearing the spiral had caused the once barely-there-hole to open up further. I searched through all my jewellery to find something that at least half matched my left ear, which was sitting happy at 6mm once more. A 4mm eyelet was too small and slipped out easily, and my 5mm glass spiral was fine except for the small gap.
Could it possibly be that both my lobes were now back at the size I had started at before all this happened?
Yes. The 6mm insertion pin slipped through my ear with ease; the tunnel was a bit trickier – the front of my lobe was a hole but the back was more of a slit. After much lube on my lobe and careful coaxing the tunnel slipped in.
Both lobes are now happily at 6mm with gaps. Next stage is 7mm somewhere close to Christmas.
It's ironic that I will now be stretching through worse scar tissue than I had before and from the same starting point of 6mm. The exact reason I opted for having them cut in the first place.
submitted by: nexizydrate
on: 09 Aug. 2012
in Lobe Scalpelling and Cutting