Simultaneous Nipple–Areola Complex Reconstruction Technique: Combination Nipple Sharing and Tattooing
Nipple–areola complex (NAC) reconstruction is the final critical process used to achieve breast symmetry, patient satisfaction, and overall reconstruction completeness. Here, we introduce our simplified simultaneous NAC reconstruction approach with nipple sharing and tattooing that resulted in minimal morbidity, high patient satisfaction, and a shortened total reconstructive period.
Patients who underwent simultaneous nipple sharing and tattooing between July 2012 and December 2017 after the final operative procedure or adjuvant therapy were included. We retrospectively evaluated breast reconstruction type, interval between breast and NAC reconstruction, mean operation time for simultaneous nipple sharing and tattooing, and postoperative complications. Overall patient satisfaction and willingness to undergo simultaneous NAC reconstruction again were assessed.
The mean interval between the final operative procedure or adjuvant therapy and NAC reconstruction was 4.4, 4.4, and 6.7 months in non-adjuvant patients, those who underwent chemotherapy, and those who underwent radiotherapy, respectively. The mean operation time for simultaneous NAC reconstruction was 46 min. No major complications such as infection or total nipple loss were observed regardless of breast reconstruction type at least 6 months postoperatively. The average overall satisfaction was 8.0 on a 10-point scale, and 96.9% of patients indicated that they would undergo this simultaneous NAC reconstruction again.
Our simplified technique of simultaneous nipple sharing and tattooing is safe and reliable and features high patient satisfaction rates. Additionally, it can be performed in the clinical setting and is convenient for patients and surgeons alike since it features a decreased total reconstruction period.
Level of Evidence IV
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KeywordsNipple–areola complex reconstruction NAC reconstruction Breast reconstruction Nipple reconstruction Nipple sharing Tattoo
None of the authors has a commercial associations or financial interests to disclose. All authors have contributed to this paper and agreed in its readiness for submission. This article has not been submitted elsewhere simultaneously.
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