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Topic: Nipple reconstruction

Forum: Breast Reconstruction — Is it right for you? Discuss timing and various procedures and techniques.

Posted on: Mar 14, 2012 07:57PM

Cyn0619 wrote:

Hi
I'm new to this forum and see there are a ton of topics on this forum. I'm not sure how to search if you r looking for something specific. I'm having my TE's switched to silicone implants next month. I had nipple sparring mastectomy on non cancer side and nipple on cancer side was too close to tumor so it was removed. I'm thinking of doing nipple reconstruction after I'm all healed from exchange. My PS says he uses incision site and tattooing. Has anyone had this done? I'm wondering how well he can match the other side. Thanks for all your input ladies ; )

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Mar 14, 2012 08:27PM - edited Mar 14, 2012 08:28PM by 1openheart

I just got  my tattoo after having my nipple constructed from the mastectomy scar.  The nipple was constructed in November after the June mastectomy.  I had the tattoo done a couple of weeks ago. It really matches pretty well.  I go back in for a touch up (if needed) in about a month.  The color really matches the natural breast pretty closely.  

If I would have had both breasts removed and therefore not needed to match the existing areola, I think I would have gone with 3D tattoos on both breasts and not had the nipples reconstructed.

Good luck to you! 

"The wound is the place where the light enters you." ~ Rumi Dx 4/28/2011, DCIS, 1cm, Stage 0, Grade 3, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+ Surgery 6/14/2011 Lymph node removal: Left, Sentinel; Mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): Nipple reconstruction
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Mar 17, 2012 08:35AM Carrol2 wrote:

I am just waiting for my pre op appointment for my nipple construction. They plan to do some fat grafting and lipo and removesome tissue under my cnacer free side to make them more even. ANything I should ask before I go into this surgery? I always get such good questions from you gals and I bring a list in with me to the PS. He is always impressed by how well informed I am and I owe it to you all.

Dx 6/23/2010, IDC, 1cm, Stage IB, Grade 3, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 8/9/2010 Lymph node removal: Right; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left): Nipple reconstruction, Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Nipple reconstruction, Tissue expander placement Chemotherapy 10/5/2010 Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Hormonal Therapy 2/3/2011
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Apr 1, 2012 12:07AM Cyn0619 wrote:

1 open heart
Hi
I just wanted to say thanks so much for your response. Can you tell me the difference between the reconstructed nipple vs. the 3d nipples. These forums are great I wish I had them much sooner!
Take care
Cindy

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Apr 2, 2012 05:08PM NatsFan wrote:

3D tats are like Trompe d'Oeill on buildings - they look like real nips with depth, but it's an illusion.  No surgery is necessary.  I had mine done by Vinnie Myers - here's his website with pictures of what they look like:  http://vinniemyers.com/section/105672_Nipple_Areola_Tattooing.html  I love mine - I got to skip a surgery, and no permanent "headlights on" issue that some women report with surgical nips.  The look absolutely real - my doctors can't believe that they're not surgical nips. 
Mary Dx 12/31/2007, IDC, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, 1/15 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Apr 2, 2012 05:14PM alliesmom15 wrote:

I had BMX in May with immediate reconstruction.  I lost my nipple on the cancer side but spared my other one.   I wasnt crazy about them so I switched drs and she did some fat grafting in Dec with lipo to my thighs to put around the implants and reconstructed a nipple for me.  I get my tattoo in a couple of weeks.  At first it was really long but now that it is healed it is the same size as my natural nipple.

I love my nipple, it looks really good.  I am more comfortable with the way I look now, I feel more like a woman than I have in a long time :) 

Jen Dx 5/21/2011, DCIS, Right, 1cm, Stage 0, Grade 3, 0/21 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2+
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Apr 5, 2012 07:25PM kburdic wrote:

Alliesmom how painful was the lipo and nipple resonstruction?I saw my PS today she is going to split my nipple which I have growing in my side into 2nipple put them on my new foobs and do some fat grafting she said the worst part would be my thighs ? I want to see my daughter about 4 days after surgery she is 5 hours away what do you think?

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Apr 5, 2012 07:48PM lago wrote:

I had my nipple recon in October then tattoos in February. They look fabulous. The only issue that I hear with the 3-D tattoo is from the side you can tell it's flat. Face front it's great.

DONE!! goo.gl/IoaN6U • Tattoos 2.7.2012 • Nipples 10.6.2011 • Exchange 6.24.2011 • Chemo 1.18. 2011 • BMX 8.31.2010 Dx 7/13/2010, IDC, 5cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, 0/14 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+
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Apr 6, 2012 01:14AM alliesmom15 wrote:

The worst thing was my thighs, they hurt.  I took my pain pills though and that really helped with the pain.  I think the worst part though was the stupid scuba suit they make you wear for so long. (compression suit LOL)

I didnt feel the nipple so much but was sore as well as being very black and blue all over the implants and the thighs.  I love the way they look though and would do it again in a heartbeat.  

I get my tattoo next week, I cant wait. 

Jen Dx 5/21/2011, DCIS, Right, 1cm, Stage 0, Grade 3, 0/21 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2+
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Apr 6, 2012 09:32AM Carrol2 wrote:

I had my pre op appointment now I have to wait for medicaid to approve it before they will schedule it. MY ps is not going to do fat grafting, they have gotten more and more round as time goes on, and the low spots all filled in. He is pretty sure he will just do the nipples and the lipo on my sides. I am going to try to lose at least 24 pounds before my surgery. He thinks it would be best to take a week off from work if I can (retail on my feet a lot). He said it's best to take it easy after the surgery for a while.

What scares me is you only get one shot at this. He will make them as long as possible and then just hope they don't flatten out. If they do then they can't re do it. SO I guess it will be whatever it will be and then I will be done except for the tatoos. 

Dx 6/23/2010, IDC, 1cm, Stage IB, Grade 3, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 8/9/2010 Lymph node removal: Right; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left): Nipple reconstruction, Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Nipple reconstruction, Tissue expander placement Chemotherapy 10/5/2010 Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Hormonal Therapy 2/3/2011
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Apr 6, 2012 09:43AM lago wrote:

Carrol why can't they redo it? Do you mean insurance won't pay for a re do or he can't do a redo on you? linky   

DONE!! goo.gl/IoaN6U • Tattoos 2.7.2012 • Nipples 10.6.2011 • Exchange 6.24.2011 • Chemo 1.18. 2011 • BMX 8.31.2010 Dx 7/13/2010, IDC, 5cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, 0/14 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+
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Apr 6, 2012 10:01AM Carrol2 wrote:

No he said that the skin can only handle so much, and that there is not much success rate in redoing it. 

Dx 6/23/2010, IDC, 1cm, Stage IB, Grade 3, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 8/9/2010 Lymph node removal: Right; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left): Nipple reconstruction, Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Nipple reconstruction, Tissue expander placement Chemotherapy 10/5/2010 Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Hormonal Therapy 2/3/2011
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Apr 6, 2012 01:08PM SuebeeBC wrote:

Carol I have to concur with the PS. I had to have a redo as the first one flattened completely by 4-6 weeks. She didnt think I would have the skin to do a redo....it was really thin at that point.   We waited a few extra months and looked again - and this time it appeared she was able to do the nip with enough skin and blood flow.  I've had the new one for 6 weeks and it looks great.  She made it extra large.

Anyway, point is, that its not a completely lost cause if the first one fails.  If its important to you and are willing to wait, redo's can happen.....but of course with anything it depends on your PS and your personal situation.

Sue - Uni Mx 1/26/11 (-o-Y o ) Exchange and Augmentation completed 6/13/11. Mentor HP Smooth Round Gel 350 and 475. Nipple added 9/29/11...which failed. New nipple added 2/23/12 and holding. Dx 11/19/2010, DCIS, Stage 0, Grade 3, 0/5 nodes, ER+/PR+
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Apr 6, 2012 02:19PM Carrol2 wrote:

suebee thanks for that. I think he was just stressing that chances aren't as good for a redo but he did not say it's impossible. He is always trying to prepare for the worst but he still seems optimistic. I think he is very pleased with his work on me lol.
Dx 6/23/2010, IDC, 1cm, Stage IB, Grade 3, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 8/9/2010 Lymph node removal: Right; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left): Nipple reconstruction, Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Nipple reconstruction, Tissue expander placement Chemotherapy 10/5/2010 Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Hormonal Therapy 2/3/2011
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Apr 6, 2012 02:48PM lago wrote:

As he should be

DONE!! goo.gl/IoaN6U • Tattoos 2.7.2012 • Nipples 10.6.2011 • Exchange 6.24.2011 • Chemo 1.18. 2011 • BMX 8.31.2010 Dx 7/13/2010, IDC, 5cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, 0/14 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+
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Apr 6, 2012 04:02PM SuebeeBC wrote:

Ditto

Sue - Uni Mx 1/26/11 (-o-Y o ) Exchange and Augmentation completed 6/13/11. Mentor HP Smooth Round Gel 350 and 475. Nipple added 9/29/11...which failed. New nipple added 2/23/12 and holding. Dx 11/19/2010, DCIS, Stage 0, Grade 3, 0/5 nodes, ER+/PR+
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Apr 7, 2012 10:50AM Carrol2 wrote:

Yeah I suppose you should expect your doctor to do his best work for you. It just seems like he kind of gets excited whenever he sees my new girls. He said they look better every time he sees them. (no pun intended hee hee) I told him I want to lose at least 24 pounds before the nipple surgery because I don't want to have a poor self image clouding my judgement of the results. I have about 3 months at least because we have to wait for medicaid to approve it and then my doctor only does surgery at my hospital one day a month and is the only one in the area that takes medicaid so he gets rally busy.

Dx 6/23/2010, IDC, 1cm, Stage IB, Grade 3, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 8/9/2010 Lymph node removal: Right; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left): Nipple reconstruction, Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Nipple reconstruction, Tissue expander placement Chemotherapy 10/5/2010 Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Hormonal Therapy 2/3/2011
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Apr 7, 2012 11:13AM lago wrote:

Carrol I think we meant he is pleased because they did turn out great.

Good luck with the weight loss. I put on a few too but I figured out some of it was water retention. I started taking the diuretic again. Lost 4.5lbs in 2 days and I feel so much better (and can get my feet in my shoes!) Still have winter weight to lose though.

I have been doing my usual power walks but also strenght training at home. I'm tightening up.

DONE!! goo.gl/IoaN6U • Tattoos 2.7.2012 • Nipples 10.6.2011 • Exchange 6.24.2011 • Chemo 1.18. 2011 • BMX 8.31.2010 Dx 7/13/2010, IDC, 5cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, 0/14 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+
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Apr 7, 2012 12:16PM Carrol2 wrote:

yeah I wish this was just water weight. I have just gotten into some really bad eating habits and not working out at all, zilch. Monday I am going to go back to the gym. Don;t work again until Thursday so that gives me a chance to deal with all the soreness I am sure there will be after not going for so long.

Dx 6/23/2010, IDC, 1cm, Stage IB, Grade 3, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 8/9/2010 Lymph node removal: Right; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left): Nipple reconstruction, Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Nipple reconstruction, Tissue expander placement Chemotherapy 10/5/2010 Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Hormonal Therapy 2/3/2011
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Apr 15, 2012 01:36PM Golden01 wrote:

My  nipple reconstruction surgery is scheduled for May 18 with tattoos to follow. I have a good friend that is a about a month ahead of me on this journey. Her PS said he could do the surgery in the surgical suite in his office using "twilight sleep". She's opted for a hospital based surgical center instead and indicates they will not be using general anethesia. We both had BMX. I can't imagine not being totally out while they do the surgery. My preop visit isn't for a couple of more weeks. For my other surgeries, they've kept me overnight due to low blood pressure problems.

Here's my questions:

What kind of anethesia did you  have for nipple reconstruction?

Did anyone spend a night at the surgical center after your surgery?

My PS only uses hospital based surgical centers but has anyone had the nipple surgery done within their PS office?

Mucinous Carcinoma, Hypercellular Variant; Oncotype DX 27, Dx 7/8/2011, <1cm, Stage I, Grade 2, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2- Hormonal Therapy 7/20/2014 Arimidex (anastrozole)
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Apr 15, 2012 11:02PM lab44 wrote:

Has anyone had their nipple reconstruction dnoe with skin from your abdomen? Just looking for tips on what to expect afterwards since I'm having this done on Thursday.

Will also have 1 implant fixed with alloderm sling since it moved too far over in pocket and some fat grafting done at same time as nipple reconstruction.

Any/all advice welcomed.

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Apr 15, 2012 11:18PM lago wrote:

lab44 When I had my nipple recon I also had a  revision done to lefty (pocket work) and fat transfer. I think it took about 3.25 hours. The donor sites will be the areas that will have the most discomfort. I would assume that goes for the skin donor site too.

How much discomfort? I'm not a good person to ask. I never took any narcotics through this entire process, even after the BMX. I was just a bit sore but not in pain. I will say this is way easier than the BMX or the exchange. After a few days you will look like you were beat into a gang. The donor sites get very bruised but look worse then you will feel.

DONE!! goo.gl/IoaN6U • Tattoos 2.7.2012 • Nipples 10.6.2011 • Exchange 6.24.2011 • Chemo 1.18. 2011 • BMX 8.31.2010 Dx 7/13/2010, IDC, 5cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, 0/14 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+
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Apr 15, 2012 11:24PM lab44 wrote:

lago: thanks

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Apr 20, 2012 07:53PM sadie5254 wrote:

I was wondering if anyone considered not having the nipples redone?  I had diep on the left side and frankly, I could care less to have any more surgery, however minor.  My husband feels and the same and we're the only ones ever going to see it.  Having the reduction done on the right side next month.  PS asked about the reconstruction and I said I wasn't interested, and he said I could do it anytime.  I love the smooth look and don't have to wear a nipple shield to work. (Well, I do on the right side still).   Wondered if anyone else didn't have it done.

Dx 12/22/2011, DCIS, 6cm+, Stage 0, Grade 2, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 2/2/2012 Mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): DIEP flap Surgery 5/17/2012 Reconstruction (right)
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Apr 22, 2012 05:04PM Kristi_in_MO wrote:

NatsFan, Thanks so much for sharing this link with everyone.  Am getting ready for tattooing and one nipple didn't heal well, and is quite flat, so I think 3D may be exactly what I and many others need.  Thanks!

Kristi in MO (Dx 5/11, NSBMX w/ TE - 7/11 - DCIS, LCIS; Reconst. 11/11; LAVH BSO 12/2010) Dx 5/2011, DCIS, 1cm, Stage 0, Grade 1, 0/4 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Apr 22, 2012 08:15PM Carrol2 wrote:

Hey Kristi I am in MO too. Were are you from, I am in Belton. DO you have a tatoo guy yet. Who is  your PS? WOuld love to compare notes.

Dx 6/23/2010, IDC, 1cm, Stage IB, Grade 3, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 8/9/2010 Lymph node removal: Right; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left): Nipple reconstruction, Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Nipple reconstruction, Tissue expander placement Chemotherapy 10/5/2010 Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Hormonal Therapy 2/3/2011
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Apr 23, 2012 04:17PM Fighter_34 wrote:

What happens after you stop protecting the nipple? Do you guys wear bras as you did before? Do you continue to wear nipple shields to keep the shape and form? I guess I am seeking answer to the term. What will my nipples be like after a year or so.

Also I thought our feeling would be gone I felt the tape being removed from my bandages. I don't have much feeling around the nipple area but I have tons of feeling on the outer region of my breast.

By the way I am satified and glad I did the nipples.

Dx 8/30/2010, IDC, 1cm, Stage I, Grade 3, 0/1 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2-
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Apr 23, 2012 04:42PM lago wrote:

Had my recon 6 months ago. I don't remember when I stopped shielding them but I would go by your PS's instructions. Mine  project enough to look real and are fine in a bra with just a tiny bit of thickness.

DONE!! goo.gl/IoaN6U • Tattoos 2.7.2012 • Nipples 10.6.2011 • Exchange 6.24.2011 • Chemo 1.18. 2011 • BMX 8.31.2010 Dx 7/13/2010, IDC, 5cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, 0/14 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+
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Apr 24, 2012 10:35AM - edited Apr 24, 2012 10:35AM by Fighter_34

Lago-I like to wear a suppot style cami to help with shaping. Something like a SPANX. Would this flatten out my nipple? It does not fit tight across my breast but it does fit close around my tummy (wich is really what I want). I am thinking I should be fine, but I am just nervous cuz this is all new to me.

Dx 8/30/2010, IDC, 1cm, Stage I, Grade 3, 0/1 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2-
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Apr 24, 2012 11:11AM lago wrote:

I would check with your PS. I would think it's a bit too early to wear something like that.

DONE!! goo.gl/IoaN6U • Tattoos 2.7.2012 • Nipples 10.6.2011 • Exchange 6.24.2011 • Chemo 1.18. 2011 • BMX 8.31.2010 Dx 7/13/2010, IDC, 5cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, 0/14 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+
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Apr 27, 2012 03:48PM lab44 wrote:

just had my nipple reconstruction done last week, bandages removed this week. I can tell that they will look good but it"s weird/good seeing nipples again.

For those of you who have had this proceedure done - when did your nipples finally start to shrink? I know my PS said that y 3 months out, when I have my post-op appt, it should be the correct size.

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