Nipple Repair (Areola Restoration, Nipple Reduction, Nipple Inversion) – Leesburg, VA

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About Nipple Repair

Although pregnancy and nursing are very rewarding, they can significantly alter the shape of the breasts and nipples. Genetics can also be responsible for the size, shape, and projection of the bust. Leesburg plastic surgeon Dr. Phillip Chang is pleased to offer nipple repair for patients who are unhappy with their cosmetic. Aesthetica Cosmetic Surgery & Laser Center provides areola restoration, nipple reduction, and nipple inversion correction surgery to service the diverse needs of Loudoun County patients. Call our Leesburg, VA office today to learn how nipple repair surgery can benefit you and give you the alluring shape you desire.

Types of Nipple Repair

Nipple Reduction
Nipple enlargement or nipple hypertrophy can be caused by genetics, puberty, or breastfeeding. A nipple reduction surgery is performed to reduce the size and projection of elongated nipples for a more symmetrical shape. It can also correct nipples that appear too wide.

Nipple Inversion
It is estimated that about 10% of women have at least one inverted nipple. There are varying degrees of this condition, as some inverted nipples can be reversible with stimulation, changes in temperature, or suction cups while others cannot. The most common underlying causes of inverted nipples are short ducts and other tethering tissues that pull the nipple inward. Cosmetic surgery helps correct these issues.

Areola Reduction
The areola is the pinkish brown area that surrounds the nipple. In some cases, the areola is naturally disproportionate to the nipple or can become too wide or stretched after breastfeeding, hormone changes, or weight fluctuation. The areola can even develop raised bumps. This reduction surgery alters the size of the areola to complement the natural size and shape of the breast and nipple for a balanced contour. 

Ideal Candidates

You are a great candidate for nipple correction surgery if you are in overall good health, are a nonsmoker, are past childbearing, and at a stable weight. Typically candidates desire to address the following:

  • Elongated or stretched nipples
  • Overly wide nipples
  • Inverted nipples 
  • Reduce the size of the areola
  • Correct the projection of the nipple
  • Improve the overall shape and size of the nipple

Surgical Technique

How are nipple procedures performed performed?

Nipple inversion surgery is a simple procedure that can be performed in the office without the need for general anesthesia.  Patients going to have general anesthesia for other reasons will have the nipple surgery performed at the same time.  The procedure will take less than 1 hour.

Nipple Reduction
A nipple reduction surgery is used to address elongated or wide nipples. Dr. Chang’s approach allows for scarring to be strategically hidden along the natural curves of the nipple and areola. With an elongated profile, a cylinder of skin is removed from around the base of the nipple and then sutured to close the two sides together. A wide nipple is treated by removing a wedge of tissue to create a more proportionate appearance. The nerves and milk ducts are generally not affected.

Nipple Inversion
Nipple inversion surgery is a simple procedure that can be performed in the office without the need for general anesthesia. Dr. Chang will use a long acting numbing agent to ease any discomfort. A retraction suture is then used to pull the nipple out to its full length. A tiny incision is placed at the inferior side of the nipple. The thick retracted milk ducts are cut one at a time with great care to avoid cutting all the ducts if it is not necessary. The incision is then closed and dressed. Nipple inversion surgery usually takes less than one hour.

Areola Reduction
Dr. Change will begin by removing a portion of the circular area (the outer edge) of the areola. This delicate excision process removes excess tissue so that the areola will have a smaller size. The remaining, healthy skin is then brought in and tightened to surround the newly created edge and secured with sutures. The stitches are placed just inside the areola margin to help hide scarring and maintain the reduced size as your skin heals. Both the projection and pigment can be reconstructed using a combination of nipple surgeries along with a skilled application of tattoo ink.

What to Expect

Nipple reduction and inversion surgery are considered outpatient procedures. Many patients can return to normal activities and drive themselves home afterward with little to no discomfort. Typically, you can return to work the following day. Dr. Chang will provide a nipple protector that should be worn under the bra for two weeks to aid in proper healing. Optimal results may take several months as the nipples settle into their new position over time.

The recovery for an areola reduction is a bit more extensive. Although the procedure is relatively simple, you should take it easy for the first few weeks to enable optimal healing. Strenuous exercise should also be avoided during this time to help in the recovery process. After about 7 – 10 days, a follow-up appointment will be scheduled so Dr. Chang can check on your progress. Final results will occur in the months that follow.

Pain after a nipple surgery:  

  • Pain after nipple inversion surgery is negligible.  
  • Most patients are prescribed a narcotic pain medication just in case for only a day or two

Return to work after a nipple surgery:  

  • Return to work the same day
  • Drive immediately

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the risks and complications of nipple surgery?

As with any surgery, there are associated risks.  Only you can decide whether a breast reduction can achieve your goals and whether the recovery and risk profile are acceptable to you.  Because of the nature of the skin of the nipple, the scars are essentially invisible. The milk ducts, are partially spared.  Some but not all  women can still breastfeed after the procedure.  Complications are rare but can include:

  • Local bleeding
  • Inability to breast feed
  • Infection particularly from the absorbable sutures
  • Loss of sensation of the nipple
  • Widened or thickened scar
  • Asymmetry (unevenness between two sides)
  • Delayed wound healing with skin or tissue necrosis
  • Extra skin at the ends of the incisions
  • Under-correction
  • Over-correction
  • Unsatisfactory results that may require additional procedures.  Patients will generally be responsible for any associated facility fees.  

How much does a nipple repair cost?
The cost of a nipple repair surgery will depend on the type of correction performed, your unique condition, and if it’s being combined with another cosmetic procedure. The exact cost of your surgery can be discussed with Dr. Chang during your initial consult.

  • Surgeon’s fee  - $1,500 
  • Office Facility Fee -   $ 700
  • VIP Members may have a discounted rate

Can I still breastfeed after a nipple correction surgery?
It is recommended that women complete childbearing prior to a nipple correction as pregnancy and weight gain can alter the results. During a nipple reduction or inversion surgery, the milk ducts will be altered to correct the size and projection of the nipple. For the most part, the ducts will be conserved and some may still be able to breastfeed afterward, but others may not. It’s important to have realistic expectations and to understand that breastfeeding may no longer be possible after this type of surgery.

Will I lose sensation of the nipple after a nipple reduction?
The important sensory nerves are generally deeper than the required incisions for the surgery. Therefore, physical sensation is typically spared after a nipple reduction.

Can I have a nipple repair at the same time as a breast lift or breast augmentation?
Yes. A nipple repair is commonly performed in conjunction with other cosmetic breast surgeries. A nipple reduction or inversion can also be done solely in the office without the need for anesthesia.

Can men have nipple correction surgery?
Yes. Nipple surgeries, including areola reduction, are quite common for men as well as women. Gynecomastia is the technical term for what we commonly call "man boobs," and can be corrected by Dr. Chang. In many cases, gynecomastia can cause a man to have enlarged areolas, which can be addressed with cosmetic surgery.

Improve your bust

Do you feel self-conscious about the look of your nipples? You deserve to look as alluring on the outside as you feel on the inside. Call Aesthetica Cosmetic Surgery & Laser Center in the greater metro D.C. area to discover how a nipple correction surgery can dramatically improve your aesthetic. Dr. Chang can sit down with you to discuss all your concerns and cosmetic goals to create a personalized treatment plan just for you. 

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*Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary from person to person. Images may contain models.