I'm due my mastectomy on the NHS early Jan.
Just been for a chat with my surgeon. She says necrosis of the nipple is very rare but can happen.
Just wondered if this happened to anyone and if so, what is the treatment in real terms. I'm usually one of the people who gets the 0.001% chance of going wrong, so just being prepared!!!
Any docs, your help would be appreciated.
Mastectomy is medical speak for breast removal. The nipple gets its blood supply from the surrounding skin and from the gland attached. Remove the gland and the nipple skin now needs to get its blood from the surrounding skin. Interrupt enough of this second supply and the nipple may die. Nipple skin can also die if traumatized enough such as overuse of cautery or bleeding stopping devices. The best way to deal with this is prevention.
Surgery like any other activity involves risks. I advise my patients it is like driving a car. If you do not want to get into a car accident, do not drive a car and stay away from where the cars are. That is not practical, so the next best option is to maximize safety like wear a seat belt. Surgeon selection is an important factor in such issues. I minimize the risks for my patients by making a smaller incision for most of my surgery, minimizing tissue trauma, special cautery, and other surgical and after techniques. However, such risks are still real and can happen.
Hope this helps,
Michael Bermant, MDLearn More About Gynecomastia