This reconstructive procedure is performed in collaboration with a breast surgeon who first makes an opening around the edge of the areola. The breast is then hollowed out, sparing the breast skin.
The breast, nipple, and areola are then immediately reconstructed using natural skin. A permanent implant is used to match the size of the natural breast.
If the tumor is too close to the nipple, nipple sparing will not be an option. Examples of possible candidates for this procedure include women who have small tumors, and those wishing to undergo preventive mastectomy to reduce their risk of developing cancer in the future.
“What are the possible surgical complications associated with this procedure?”
The body’s ability to get oxygen to the nipple and areola are a function of the blood supply, which may be reduced in the immediate aftermath of this procedure. Great care is taken to insure an adequate blood supply so that complete healing can take place.
“What about sensation in the nipple area?”
While it is not unusual to experience a return of some degree of sensation to the breast skin, this is very rarely the case in the nipple when the breast tissue has been completely removed.