A 15-year-old boy who allegedly underwent ear piercing illegally without
parental permission suffered severe gangrene and almost lost his earlobe to
infection. Doctors at Kaplan Medical Center in Rehovot performed emergency
surgery last week and saved him from amputation of his external ear.
teen, Niv Lin from Mazkeret Batya, arrived at the hospital with an advanced
infection of his left earlobe. Doctors sent him for an urgent operation under
general anesthesia to remove gangrenous pieces of cartilage from his
Dr. Hagit Shofel Habakuk, a surgeon in the ear-nose-and-throat
department, said that piercing ear cartilage, especially on the upper part of
the outer ear, can be very harmful. The infection could have spread to his blood
circulation and bones, she said.
“Prevent your children from suffering
unnecessary complications,” she urged.
The boy received intravenous
antibiotics for several days in an effort to create new cartilage and restore
the shape of his outer ear.
His father, Gil, said he and his wife had
been on a ski vacation when their son went to have the upper part of his ear
pierced. When they returned, they found he had an earring and an extremely
“We were very angry that he did it without our permission;
we even went to talk to the young man who did the piercing to tell him he acted
illegally,” the boy’s father said.
The family’s health fund physician
referred them to Kaplan, where the doctors immediately made a cut to drain out
the pus. But a general operation was necessary to stop the spread of
Lin told his parents that he had dropped the idea of piercing
“I went through a very unpleasant experience. I call on
other youths not to undergo piercing even if they have to endure social
pressure,” he said.
According to a 2004 Knesset amendment, no one may
perform piercing of the body (except the lower part of the ear) on anyone under
the age of 16 without the parents’ written consent.