If you have undergone breast reconstruction following a mastectomy you may wish to complete your new breast/s with a reconstructed nipple areola complex.
Ocean Clinic Marbella offers two nipple areola reconstruction methods – reconstruction using tissue or a 3D nipple tattoo (micropigmentation). Read on to discover more about each technique…
Nipple areola reconstruction using tissue
Around three to four months after breast reconstruction surgery, once your new breast/s has had time to heal, you can have a simple surgical procedure to recreate a nipple from existing breast skin.
The surgeon makes small incisions around the site where the nipple would usually be located in order to create several flaps of skin. This skin is then elevated and shaped into a nipple mound.
The areola can be recreated with skin taken from elsewhere on the body, such as the inner thigh or buttock crease.
The new nipple and areola is then tattooed to simulate the natural colours, which will be matched to your existing nipple in the case of singular mastectomy.
Nipple areola reconstruction using 3D micropigmentation
It is also possible to reconstruct the nipple areola non-surgically, via 3D micropigmentation (also know as medical tattooing). This allows colour pigmentation to simulate the nipple areola without the contour of an actual nipple.
Biopigments are tattooed permanently into the skin’s epidermis with a thin, sterilized needle. Our skilled micropigmentation specialist is able to use pigment in shades that make the flat tattoo look three-dimensional.
The result can be highly lifelike and this method avoids the need for further surgery, which patients may prefer following the trauma of mastectomy and breast reconstruction. Micropigmentation of each nipple takes between 45 to 60 minutes and is not painful.
3D micropigmentation in other breast surgeries
Micropigmentation can also be used to correct areola asymmetries following breast augmentation or reduction or to restore pigment in white scar tissue around the areola.
If the patient has suffered from areola necrosis, micropigmentation can also be used to reconstruct the nipple.
Equally, micropigmentation can be used independently of surgery, where patients desire to change the shape or colour of their areolar. As women age, areola tone begins to fade however Micropigmentation can be used to restore youthful colour. This technique can also be used to correct nipple areola asymmetries, which often appear at puberty, or simply improve on a patient’s natural shape.