The surgeon will start by assessing which part of the nipple needs to be reduced. The nipple could be reduced in length, width, or both depending on the shape and the desired result.
Nipples that droop down or project too far out will be shortened. Sometimes the skin around the neck of the nipple is removed and the tip is stitched to the bottom of the nipple. A circular incision is made at the bottom of the new nipple and another circular incision at the base of the present nipple. If the nipple is too wide or thick, but not too long, a pie-shaped wedge will be removed from underneath the nipple. The extra skin or tissue is carefully dissected as a very thin cutaneous and then excised after. Stitches are then used to close the incision, and gauze dressings are placed over the breasts.
Nipple reduction surgery is an outpatient procedure. Hospital admission is not necessary. The operation will only take one to two hours and can be done during local anaesthesia.
Pre Operative Care
Surgeons advised that patients to do the following prior to the nipple reduction surgery to avoid post operation bleeding or any complications:
• Inform the surgeon of any allergies, all medical conditions, and any medication that currently taking (both prescription and non-prescription).
• Avoid aspirin and blood thinning medication such as brufen for two weeks to eliminate the chance of post operation bleeding.
• Avoid smoking for two weeks prior to surgery as this may affect your reaction to the anaesthetic and prolong the healing process.
• Inform the surgeon if suffering from hypertension.
Post Operative Care
After nipple reduction surgery, patients should expect the following:
• Post Op Dressings. Patients will need dressings and a light gauze bandage which will be worn for several days. Patients will be able to shower the following day but surgeons recommend to apply antibacterial ointment before showering as long as the sutures are not yet removed from the surgical site. Dirty water and sweat should also be avoided to get inside the wound to avoid infection.
• Nipple and Areola Sensation. Extra sensitivity to pain and touch may be felt and will subside in a couple of weeks.
• Stitches. Surface sutures are removed after approximately 5- 7 days after the surgery.
• Recovery. Recovery time will depend on the patient, but most patients can return to work and resume their normal activities within a day or two.
Risks and Complications
Risks are inherent to any surgical procedure. But do not worry, all precautions are taken by Plastic Surgery Phuket’s surgeons to avoid these risks.
Here are the most common and temporary risks of nipple reduction surgery:
• Loss of sensation to the nipple and areola
Minimal pain and scarring are also among the risks particular to this surgery. Surgeons will administer painkillers and any soreness will usually disappear by the second or third day. Scarring will be made as inconspicuous as possible by cutting the smallest incision possible. For some this may be faint, for others it can be quite obvious.
Scar treatments can be discussed with the operating surgeon in advance to know how to take care of them while the scar tissue is forming. Dissolving sutures will be used to minimize scarring so that you won’t need to come back to have sutures removed.
Mothers who want to undergo this treatment should not worry as nipple reduction does not normally affect the ability to breastfeed.
Following surgery, your nipple will be balanced and proportionate in size and shape with the rest of your breast.