Inverted Nipple Surgery London

London-based Inverted Nipple Corrector clinic. Carried out by our credited surgeons, Pulse Light Clinic swiftly achieves your ideal results in a simple walk-in, walk-out format.

What are Inverted Nipples?

Inverted nipples are nipples that fail to protrude outwards and instead lie flat or sink inwards. Inverted nipples are commonly called retracted nipples, sunken nipples, or turned-in nipples. 

Retracted nipples occur when the surrounding connective tissue becomes tightened or if there are other problems with the ductal system connected to the nipple, like short milk ducts. 

Some of the most common nipple inversion causes are genetically from birth, during puberty, or pregnancy. In some cases, people develop inverted nipples later in their lives. Though it is likely to be natural, there is a slight chance of that inverted nipple being a symptom of lobular cancer.

In the case of pregnancy, only one-third of women develop inward nipples, and around 90% of them do not keep them after the birth of their child. Inverted nipples formed out of pregnancy occur when the skin adhesions that maintain the shape of your nipples loosen. This release could be due to the increased amount of stored fat. However, the size of your milk ducts and the amount of connective tissue are also responsible for nipple inversion. 

Surgeons commonly categorise the severity of nipple inversion into three grades. 

The first grade describes flat nipples that occasionally evert back due to environmental factors like temperature. 

The second grade is nipples that can erect if manually stimulated and pulled out. However, the nipple returns to its usual shape after the pressure subsides. 

The third-grade is nipples that cannot be everted or are extremely difficult to evert even with constant stimulation and pressure. 

It is possible to have only one inverted nipple. It is also possible to have two inverted nipples of different grades.

What is Inverted Nipple Surgery?

Inverted or retracted nipple surgery involves freeing your nipples from the surrounding tissue, allowing the surgeon to relocate the nipple to an outward position using stitches. The surgeon will then place a small splint to hold the nipple outward. These splints would need to remain for one week.

For this procedure, you will be subject to anaesthetic.

The time it takes for the surgery’s completion will be from 30 minutes to two hours, depending on your inversion grade and whether one or two nipples need treatment.

You are extremely unlikely to experience any permanent change in the sensation of your nipples after inversion surgery.  

As this is a walk-in, walk-out procedure, you will usually be able to go home later the same day.

How long is the Recovery for Inverted Nipple Surgery?

Recovery after inverted nipple treatment is rapid. You should be healthy enough to return to work after only 48 hours once the anaesthetic has worn off. However, you should arrange to have someone pick you up after the procedure. 

You may experience mild pain or bruising following your surgery; you can treat this with over-the-counter painkillers. In your first week of recovery, you should keep your dressing and split intact. You may experience slight bleeding or inflammation around the nipple, but this is entirely normal. 

Six weeks should be allowed for the final results, so your nipple remains erect, and the swelling subsides.

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Inverted nipple surgery FAQs

What are flat nipples?

Flat nipples are unraised nipples that lay even with the areola and surrounding breast skin. They do not stick out or turn inwards either.

What does an inverted nipple mean?

Nipples that do not point out and instead are retracted or lie flat. Commonly called sunken or retracted nipples. It may happen to only one breast or both. It could also be genetic, but happening later in life is natural too. However, there is a chance it could be a symptom of breast cancer, and we recommend that you book a physical check-up with your doctor.

How to correct inverted nipples?

Inverted nipple surgery is the only permanent solution for all grades of inverted nipples.

How will inverted nipple correction affect the feeling in your nipples?

You should not notice any permanent effect on sensation after inverted nipple surgery. The majority of patients have their nipple sensation return after recovery.

What are the most common causes of inverted nipples?

These circumstances cause the retraction of nipples: breast cancer, fibrocystic breast disease, duck ectasia, scarring or loss of fat, and periductal mastitis.

Can you get inverted nipples after pregnancy?

About one-third of mothers experience an inversion of nipples, but only 10% of mothers keep it after birth. Nipple inversion is less likely with each subsequent birth. Tight connective tissue or other problems with the ductal system connected to the nipple may also cause retracted nipples.

What type of cancer can inverted nipples mean?

Lobular breast cancer causes inverted nipples but is only 10% of breast cancer cases. If you were to get one or two inverted nipples suddenly, the chances that it is due to cancer is 5%.

Can you breastfeed after nipple inversion surgery?

Yes, after surgery to correct inverted nipples breastfeeding is possible.

What causes inverted nipples after pregnancy?

The loosening of the adhesions at the base of the nipple will cause flat or inverted nipples, as it helps bind the skin to the underlying tissue. The amount of fat in your breast, the length of your milk ducts, and the density of connective tissue beneath your nipples play a part in how loose or tight your nipple adhesions are.

How to get rid of flat nipples?

The most effective and only permanent solution to flat nipples is surgery. Sunken nipple surgery is also the only treatment that can cure all grades of nipple inversion.

Does a flat or inverted nipple mean cancer?

If one or both of your nipples become inverted or flat suddenly, it could be a potential sign of breast cancer. For cancer cases, Inverted nipples may also accompany symptoms like a lump in your breast or skin changes on your breast like dimples. Please contact your local doctor for a physical screening as soon as you can.

Is inverted nipple surgery painful?

Due to the effects of anaesthetic, the procedure itself will be painless. Post-procedure, the pain is usually mild, meaning common painkillers should be sufficient to suppress any pain.

Can you develop inverted nipples after menopause?

Due to the drop in estrogen production levels, some women mature into more sunken nipples with smaller areolas.

What is aftercare like for inverted nipple surgery?

Aftercare is included in your treatment package, meaning follow-up appointments are common to track your recovery. Our surgeons can treat any immediate complications with no additional charge. In other words, surgery is simply the most reliable treatment if you are looking for a permanent solution.

What are the side effects of inverted nipple surgery?

Though risks are associated with any surgical procedure, some potential complications unique to inverted nipple surgery are soreness/sensitivity issues, inability to breastfeed, recurrence of inversion, scarring, anaesthetic reaction and compromised blood supply.

Soreness/sensitivity issues - Your nipples may feel sore following your surgery, and you may also notice a change in your nipples sensitivity. In most cases, your sensitivity increases. However, occasionally, your nipples may feel numb. Fortunately, soreness and sensitivity fluctuation often only last for a few weeks.

Inability to breastfeed - Since your physician separates milk ducts from your breast tissue (either partially or entirely), you may become unable to breastfeed. In many cases, breastfeeding is still viable post-inverted nipple surgery. However, patients with more severe inversion (grades two and three) are at high risk.

Inversion recurrence - Recurrence of inversion is incredibly unlikely and has only been reported in very severe cases of grade three nipple inversion. Additional surgery might be necessary to treat this.

Loss of blood supply - In extreme cases, you could lose the nipple's blood supply from nipple inversion surgery. Fortunately, losing blood supply to your nipples following inverted nipple surgery is highly improbable.

Some of the side effects common within all surgeries, including inverted nipple surgery, are infection, bleeding/bruising, anaesthetic reaction, scarring and nerve damage.

Infection - Fortunately, infection is an unlikely symptom of inverted nipple surgery. However, if you are susceptible to infections or have a weakened immune system, you should raise your concerns with your physician as you may need additional care.

Bleeding/bruising - Bleeding and bruising are pervasive but typically minor side effects of inverted nipple surgery. If your wound opens after surgery but fails to close, you should contact your physician for medical help.

Nerve damage - In some cases, inverted nipple surgery may cause damage to a nerve. A damaged nerve may result in numbness for several weeks or months but often make a full recovery. In sporadic cases, a nerve may be compromised after an inverted nipple surgery, causing mobility issues in the area around the wound.

Scarring - Scarring is common in any surgical procedure. Though there are measures to avoid or minimise scarring during and after your surgery, some scarring is unavoidable for inverted nipple correction. In addition, the amount of scarring will depend on the skill of your surgeon. Thankfully, our expert surgeons' focal point is to keep scarring to a minimum.

Anaesthetic reactions - Reactions are certainly the most dangerous of all immediate side effects with surgical procedures in general. The symptoms following a reaction vary between patients but include a rash, hives, severe itchiness, swelling, drop in blood pressure, shortness of breath, coughing, etc. Fortunately, reacting to anaesthesia is extremely rare and largely preventable.

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Inverted Nipple Correction Experts

Why Choose Pulse Light Clinic

Entrance of Marylebone clinic PLC Cosmetic

A UK-based Clinic housing the very best surgeons for Sunken Nipple Correction

The benefits of Pulse Light Clinic Inverted Nipple Surgery:

Medication to combat swelling, blistering and scabbing post surgery

Fast recovery; return to daily life in just two days

Little to no scarring post-procedure

Effective anaesthetic, meaning a painless surgery

More than 20 years of experience as a practicing cosmetic surgery Clinic

Doctor and Nurse-Led Clinic