You may seek treatment for inverted nipples if the ability to breastfeed is a concern or if you are unhappy with the appearance of your breasts. The condition is present in approximately 2% of women and in a significant number of cases are hereditary. Nipple reconstruction is a simple and very successful procedure- its positive effect on self-esteem and body confidence are well documented.
Why You Might Need Nipple Reconstruction
Inverted nipples are extremely common and appear in men and women alike.
If you have tried to evert the nipple using a device such a Niplette but your nipple continues to invert, you may begin to consider nipple reconstruction surgery. It is also advisable to see your GP in such cases to ensure that there is no underlying pathology.
Most women are able to breastfeed despite having inverted nipples, however it can cause considerable pain and soreness. Inverted nipples may also cause aesthetic concern and for some may become a source of embarrassment. If you are affected by any of the reasons mentioned above, you may want to seek specialist advice.
What Does Nipple Reconstruction Involve?
Inverted nipples occur due to a shortening of the lactiferous breast ducts and counteractive forces pulling the nipple inwards therefore preventing full projection. In surgical nipple reconstruction, the lactiferous duct will be cut. Depending on the technique used by the surgeon, the surgery is very successful with a recurrence rate of between 10-20%.
How Can I Maintain The Results Of Nipple Reconstruction?
In the first few weeks after surgery, it is advisable to use a Niplette device to keep the nipples everted as the scar heals.
Recovery Time and Side Effects
Dressings will be applied to the area and will be checked after around a week by your consultant. This procedure is often performed as a daycase surgery but some patients may have to stay for approximately one night. Patients are strongly advised to avoid driving immediately after surgery. The main side effects of this surgery include reduced (sometimes permanent) nipple sensation, pain and swelling.
These are rare, but you may experience infection or a haematoma which is a collection of blood under the skin. These side effects can be easily managed and don’t pose a serious threat.
For more information, we would be delighted if you wanted to arrange a consultation with us. You can call the Helpline on 01342 488054 for free and professional advice.
Patient Information Hub
If you are thinking about having cosmetic surgery, here are some important questions that you should ask yourself to help you make the decision that is right for you.
- What do I want to change and why do I want to have surgery?
- Have I considered all the options?
- Can surgery give me the results I want?
- Am I expecting the surgery to change my life as well as my appearance?
- Is now the right time?
Having surgery is a big decision
Planning your long-term goals with your consultant, and researching the procedure, will reinforce whether surgery is the right option for you.Surgery is not without risk so you should be sure in your reasons for wanting to go ahead. It is important that your expectations are realistic and that the advantages to you always outweigh the risk of surgery.
Take this checklist to your consultation with the surgeon performing the procedure. Discuss each topic with your surgeon to help you make the decision that is right for you before having surgery.
Having surgery is a big decision
Think carefully before having cosmetic surgery
Never feel rushed or pressured into giving your consent. Be wary of surgeons or staff who try to convince you to go ahead. Take plenty of time to make your decision.
We strongly advise you take at least two weeks after your consultation with the surgeon performing the procedure to think things through before surgery.