Nipple Corrections and Reconstructions
is a condition where the nipple, instead of projecting outwards, is retracted into the breast. In some cases, the nipple can be temporarily protruded if mechanically stimulated, but in others, the inversion remains in spite of stimulus. Both women and men can have inverted nipples. There are three grades of inverted nipples, based on how easily the nipple may be protruded and the degree of fibrous scar in the breast as well as the resultant damage on the milk ducts.
Grade 1– refers to nipples that can easily be protruded, by using finger pressure around the areolar area. Most of the time the Grade 1 inverted nipple maintains its projections and seldom retracts. Grade 1 inverted nipples may occasionally pop up without manual stimulation or pressure. Milk ducts are usually not damaged and breast feeding is possible. They have minimal or no fibrosis. There won’t be any soft-tissue deficiency of the nipple. The lactiferous duct swill be normal without any retraction.
Grade 2– in this condition the nipple w can be pulled out, but not as easily as the Grade- 1 inverted nipple, but will retract soon after pressure is released. Breast feeding could be possible .Grade- 2 nipples will have a moderate degree of fibrosis. The lactiferous ducts are mildly retracted but may not need surgical release for the release of fibrosis
Grade 3 –is the condition were nipples are severely retracted and nipple can rarely be pulled out physically. These nipples will require surgery in order to be protracted. Milk ducts are often constricted and narrow, so breast feeding is impossible. People with Grade 3 inverted nipples usually suffer from infections, rashes, or problems with nipple hygiene. The fibrosis is remarkable and lactiferous ducts are short and severely contracted.
SURGICAL TREATMENT –
Plastic surgical correction is needed for most Grade- 2 & Grade-3 patients. Surgery is normally performed as outpatient/ day surgery procedures and patients will be able to go home after few hours The main complications of surgery are pain, swelling and sensitivity in the nipple areola area which can last for 1-2 weeks after the procedure has been done. Other risks include infection, unsatisfactory results, bleeding, adverse reactions to anaesthesia, and the need for revision surgery ..
Medicated dressings are used after the surgery to cover the nipples.. The sutures are usually removed seven days after the procedure. The ability to breastfeed cannot be fully guaranteed after the surgical procedures.
Another way of keeping the inverted nipples protracted is to have the nipples pierced. This method will only be effective if the nipple can be manually protracted. If pierced when protracted, the rings/ jewellery may prevent the nipple from returning to its previous inverted state.