How To Get Cauliflower Ear
Boxing fans may wonder why professional boxers get cauliflower ear, characterized by a bumpy, misshapen appearance in the skin and cartilage of the ear. Cauliflower ear results from repeated hits and injury to the ear. Cauliflower ear often appears in boxers and wrestlers, who frequently sustain damage in this area. Safety measures and prompt medical attention prevent or minimize the risk of developing cauliflower ear after such an injury.
Cause. Boxers and other professional athletes get cauliflower ear as the result of a blood clot or ripping the skin from the cartilage underneath. This tear or clot then prevents blood from reaching the cartilage, causing tissue death. Cartilage gives the ear its shape; as it dies and shrivels, the ear takes on the deformed, characteristically cauliflower appearance.
Prevention. Once a person does get cauliflower ear, it is often permanent. Minimize the chances of getting cauliflower ear by always wearing helmets and other protective headgear when playing contact sports. The greatly reduces the risk of blunt force trauma to the head, which is how you get cauliflower ear.
Treatment. Medical attention from a qualified professional immediately after sustaining this type of injury reduces the risk that you will get cauliflower ear. Blood must be drained from the area in the case of a blood clot under the skin caused by severe bruising. The physician makes an incision to do this, then applies a dressing to compress the skin and cartilage, encouraging reattachment. In the case of skin that has become unattached from the cartilage, stitches may be needed so that the patient does not get cauliflower ear.