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Having inverted nipples, nipples that point inwards, is a relatively common condition that can be rectified by surgery.

The procedure and technique used will be dependent upon the degree of nipple inversion. In some cases, surgery may not be needed. In the mildest forms, a suction device can be used to turn the nipple outwards (evert the nipple). Sometimes an incision in the breast tissue can help to rectify the problem.

Some patients may have one inverted nipple, for others both nipples are inverted.

It is always best to get expert medical advice for an accurate diagnosis and treatment recommendations for your particular circumstances.

What does inverted nipple correction surgery involve?

Inverted nipples are caused by excess connective tissue which can lead to the shortening of the milk ducts as they come into the nipple. Breast surgery which helps release or partially divide the milk duct is one of the key elements of correction. This usually involves making an incision and drawing the nipple out to protrude in the desired fashion.

What are the grades of inverted nipples?

There are 3 grades of inverted nipples that are used to classify the severity of their inversion and help to determine the best course of treatment. These are:

  • Grade 1 – The lowest level of inverted nipple. Nipples will often appear flat, but may sometimes evert as a result of temperature changes and without manipulation.
  • Grade 2 – Nipple is slightly more inverted. They can normally be pulled out manually, but will retract once pressure is removed.
  • Grade 3 – The most severe form of inverted nipple. Nipples often cannot be everted, even with manual manipulation.

How long will I be in hospital for inverted nipple correction?

Nipple inversion surgery normally involves a local anaesthetic and you will be admitted as an outpatient meaning you will be able to go home the same day. You may experience some mild pain or bruising following surgery, this is to be expected and should be treated with mild painkillers. If you’re worried about the pain following inverted nipple surgery, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with your surgeon.

Following surgery you should avoid any strenuous activity, including heavy exercise, for at least a week. Compression of the nipple should be avoided, which can include wearing certain bras or tight tops, to allow the nipple to heal correctly. As with all aspects of surgery, your dedicated surgeon will provide you with detailed instructions on what to do in the period following surgery which may help you make a full and speedy recovery.

Inverted Nipple Correction – Operation guide

Inverted nipple correction The operation is usually performed under a local anaesthetic. The nature of the surgery is dependent upon the severity of the condition and you should follow medical advice. Normally a small scar is placed at the base of the nipple in order to release the tissues and bring the nipple out. Stubborn inverted nipples can be difficult to fully correct and some recurrence is not unusual. In some cases the nipples go back inwards after surgery and may require a second procedure. Read our tips and tricks for a successful recovery.

Can I breastfeed after inverted nipple surgery?

There are occasions when the milk ducts may have to be cut inside the breast tissue in order to achieve eversion of nipples. Breastfeeding can be affected as a result. Whether this affects you will depend on the grade of nipple inversion and the necessary procedure to correct this. Your surgeon will discuss this in detail with you at your consultation. Lifetime aftercare policy We operate a lifetime follow-up policy for all our patients. If you need to consult MyBreast or one of our surgeons at any time after your initial follow-up consultation phase, you are very welcome to do so.

Should I be worried about inverted nipples?

Inverted nipples are not usually a sign of anything serious medically, although it you have a sudden change you should see your doctor and get medical advice because this could be a sign of breast cancer. For many women is it more a question of how they look and how they make you feel. If you are concerned about inverted nipples medical treatment is available.

How can I permanently fix my inverted nipples?

Many women are able to permanently fix their inverted nipples through surgery though the exact solution will depend on how serious the condition is . Your doctor will be able to advise you on the best course of action in your case.

Why are my nipples not sticking out?

Up to 10% of the female population have nipples that do not stick out from their breasts. This is a common condition and in most cases not harmful. If you are concerned about the look or appearance of your nipples one of our doctors will be able to advise on treatment.

The risks of inverted nipple correction

Every surgery comes with some risk and it’s important to understand any potential side-effects of inverted nipple surgery. Your nipples may feel sore and sensitive after surgery. However, most patients recover quickly from the procedure. Complications of nipple repair include a potential inability to breastfeed where milk ducts in the breast tissue have been divided as part of the procedure. Recurrence of the inversion is uncommon in milder forms but more likely in very inverted nipples. Very rarely the blood supply to the nipple can be compromised as part of the procedure. Your surgeon will discuss with you the potential risks of the surgery at your consultation.


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