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Inverted Nipple Repair

A woman's nipples are important to her body image, sexuality, and ability to breast feed. Nipple inversion affects approximately 2% of all women and can involve one or both breasts. The problem may be transient and responsive to stimulation or permanent. In either case, this disfiguring condition can be successfully managed with a surgical procedure that directly addresses the cause of the problem. The result is normally everted, projecting nipples.

What is the nipple and areola?

The nipple is the projecting portion of the breast that carries the lactiferous (milk) ducts. The areola is the dark pigmented circle of skin from which the nipple projects.

Am I a candidate for inverted nipple repair?

Whether your nipples are transiently inverted or permanently retracted, you will benefit from the inverted nipple repair procedure.

What causes inverted nipples?

The lactiferous (milk) ducts leading to the nipple are unusually short and tight, pulling the nipple inward.

How is an inverted nipple repair performed?

A small incision is made at the base of the nipple within the colored areala so the scar is hidden. Then the shortened ducts are either released or selectively divided depending upon the severity of the inversion to allow for nipple eversion. Small stitches are placed under the nipple to hold the nipple out in a projected position.

What are the main risks of the procedure?

The ability to breast feed may be affected due to milk duct manipulation. Sensation to the nipple is usually intact after an inverted nipple repair, but can sometimes be affected.

What kind of anesthesia is necessary for an inverted nipple repair?

Local anesthetic achieves complete pain control so that you may comfortably undergo this procedure in the office operating room setting. You may opt for IV sedation or general anesthesia if you would prefer not to feel the injections to numb the skin.

What is the recovery?

If the procedure is performed under local anesthesia, you can be back to work and most activities within several hours. There is a mild amount of discomfort which is easily manageable. You may shower after 24 hours and the splint is removed after 2 to 4 days.

Is there anything I can do about nipples that are too long or wide? How about enlarged areola?

Yes. Under a local anesthetic, simple procedures are available to reduce the length and/or width of your nipple depending upon your goals. Similarly, enlarged areala can be made smaller with minimal recovery time and very little risk.


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Before and After Photos

 
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