Correcting an inverted nipple takes about 30-minutes and is usually performed under local anaesthetic (with you awake) as a day case procedure (in and out the same day).
What does it involve?
Once your nipple is numbed using injections of local anaesthetic small incisions are made at the base of the nipple. Depending upon the degree of your nipple inversion, either a stitch is inserted inside the nipple which, when tightened prevents the nipple from inverting, or alternatively, small flaps of surrounding areola skin (the coloured skin around the nipple) are tunnelled in and stitched under the nipple to prevent it inverting again.
What are the benefits?
The benefits are that your inverted nipple should be corrected with this procedure.
How long does the surgery take?
The surgery takes about 30-minutes per nipple.
What is the recovery period?
Following surgery, a protective “doughnut” dressing must be worn to prevent any pressure from your bra from pushing on your nipple. This needs to be worn for 4-6 weeks to maximise the chances of the surgery being successful.
How long before daily activities may be resumed?
Light activities may be resumed the following day. Strenuous or physical activities (such as exercise, heavy lifting) should be avoided for 2-weeks. The results of the surgery should be good as long as you protect your nipple with the dressing as described above.
What are the success rates?
The techniques described above usually correct the problem of nipple inversion, but occasionally they are not successful, in which case they may be repeated or a different technique used.
What are the possible complications?
Because it is likely that the ducts in your nipple will be damaged during the procedure, it is important that you appreciate that there is a high chance you will be unable to breastfeed following this procedure. Other complications include failure of the operation to permanently correct your nipple inversion, in which case the procedure may be repeated, or an alternative technique used as outlined above.
Infection and bleeding are always possible after any surgery, but are seldom problematic with this type of surgery. Finally, you will be left with scars after the surgery, but these are usually well hidden within the pigmented skin of the areola.