The ear is vulnerable to blunt trauma. When the ear is struck and a
develops under the skin, or the skin is sheared from the cartilage, the connection of the skin to the cartilage is disrupted, causing cauliflower ear. The cartilage of the ear has no other blood supply except that supplied by the overlying skin. When the skin is pulled from the cartilage, and/or separated from the cartilage by blood (as with accumulated blood from injury or inflammation, or infection), the cartilage is deprived of important nutrients.
Ultimately, the cartilage dies and the risk of infection is increased. Untreated, the ear cartilage contracts on itself forming a shriveled up outer ear, known as the cauliflower ear deformity. Once cartilage death and scarring (fibrosis) occurs, the resulting deformity is generally permanent.
The ear may also appear pale, due to loss of blood supply. In some cases, cosmetic procedures may improve the appearance of the ear. Cartilage damage may also result from piercing the upper ear in the cartilage. Piercing can lead to a type of ear cartilage infection called auricular perichondritis, which can result in cauliflower ear.
An even more rare cause of cauliflower ear is from the inflammation of cartilage in relapsing. In MMA, many people consider it a badge of honor. Outside the combat sports world, though, it s often looked at with a grimace. Yes, it s the famed cauliflower ear many fighters deal with.
When it gets out of hand, we ve seen ears explode from punches in the cage, leaving a gory, bloody mess. We talked to fighters this past week in Dallas ahead of UFC 185 about cauliflower ear. Check out the video above for their takes on the condition, including insight from new championsP and, plus,P,P and more. For complete coverage of, check out the section of the site.