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Chirurgia 2008 June;21(3):143-7

language: English

The inverted nipple: our experience

Agostini T., Agostini V.

Department of Plastic and Reconstructive University of Florence Faculty of Medicine and Surgery, Florence, Italy


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Aim. An inverted nipple may have both functional and aesthetic implications and many procedures have been described for creating the normal anatomic configuration of the retracted nipple. Inverted nipple, which is defined as a nipple located on a plane lower than the areola, presents both functional and cosmetic problems. Various surgical procedures have been proposed. For correcting the inverted nipple, the authors use a simple method using 2 triangular areolar dermal flaps. Each triangle is approximately 1 mm shorter than the diameter of the nipple, and the deepithelialized areolar dermal flaps are lodged at the slit in the bundle of the lactiferous ducts in the grade 2 inverted nipple.
Methods. From August 2004 to December 2005, 11 patients (16 nipples) were treated. Five patients had bilateral inverted nipples. Patient age at operation ranged from 18 to 31 years (mean age, 27 years). All nipples were congenital and they had no previous operation. Thirteen nipples were grade 2 and three were grade 3 according to the classification of inverted nipple by Han and Hong.
Results. The mean follow-up period was 27 months (range, 24–30 months). There was no complication associated with surgery. The resulting scars were minimal.
Conclusion. The authors conclude that their procedure is reliable, preserves the lactiferous ducts in grade 2 inverted nipple, requires no special postoperative care, and no recurrence of inversion. This technique can be applied to any type of inverted nipple as a primary surgical procedure with long lasting results.

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