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Helping Patients Understand Their Options Following a Mastectomy

At Wirth Plastic Surgery, board-certified plastic surgeon Garrett Wirth, MD, MS, FACS has everything you need to understand your options and determine which course of action may be the right choice for your situation and desired results. During your consultation, he’ll walk you through your options for nipple reconstruction, and help you pick the procedure that will give you the results you desire.

Is Nipple Reconstruction the Right Choice for Me?

Women who have undergone a mastectomy procedure that has left them without a nipple on one or both breasts are perfect candidates for a nipple reconstruction procedure with Garrett Wirth, MD, MS, FACS in Newport Beach, and he’ll utilize one of a few different surgical options to rebuild your nipple, depending on your unique situation and, of course, your own personal preferences.

In some cases, we can perform breast reconstruction and nipple reconstruction at the same time, but this is typically not our recommended method. Most of the time, we suggest waiting a few months, to allow the swelling from your breast reconstruction to fully subside. During your consultation, we’ll talk you through everything you need to know about this procedure and whether or not it’s the right choice for you.

What Options do I Have for Nipple Reconstruction?

Depending on the extent of your mastectomy, the characteristics of your breasts before the mastectomy, and the results you are looking to achieve, there are several different routes you may want to take for your reconstruction.

There are several possibilities available for those looking for nipple reconstruction procedures, including:

Nipple Sharing

This option allows a patient who has had a mastectomy only on one breast to use a portion of the nipple from the unaffected breast. Nipple sharing works best for those with larger nipples and, while the graft generally retains little or no sensation, the final result is generally a very natural appearance.

Nipple-Sparing Mastectomy

For someone with small to moderate breasts who was able to locate cancer early, a surgeon may be able to perform the mastectomy in such a way to preserve the nipple. This is most likely in patients with small tumors located far from the nipple.

Skin Flap or Skin Graft

Small folds of skin and tissue from the remaining breast may be used to recreate the elevated appearance of an areola and nipple. If there is not enough tissue in the breast to do so, grafts may also be taken from the thigh, abdomen, groin or buttock to achieve the same effect.

Medical Tattooing or Micropigmentation

For those who do not wish to have further surgeries, or are not candidates for these procedures, medical tattooing can be an excellent compromise. This is a straightforward and minimally invasive procedure that gives patients the appearance of a nipple, helping them to feel more “normal” and make the reconstruction feel more complete.

Wirth Plastic Surgery: A Patient-Centric Approach

We understand that you don’t just bring a unique medical situation to us when you come through our doors — you bring with you a unique set of individual goals and aspirations, as well. We’ll take all of this into account, designing a highly customized surgical plan that addresses your unique needs, allowing you to look and feel the way you’ve always wanted.

We’ll talk you through everything you might need to know about not only the procedure itself, but the recovery process as well, so you can rest assured that you’re in the most capable hands possible.

Learn More

If you are interested in learning more about these procedures and which may be right for you, call our team today at (949) 558-2133. Our Newport Beach plastic surgeon has years of experience helping patients just like you through the reconstructive process.

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