|Nipple Delay Mastectomy Incisions
Art © Pam Stephan
Back in May, Angelina Jolie revealed that she had undergone a double mastectomy with immediate reconstruction. She based that decision on her inherited gene mutation BRCA1. Although she had no signs or symptoms of breast cancer, she had lost both her mother, Marcheline Bertrand to ovarian and her aunt, Debbie Martin to breast cancer. One detail that surfaced was Jolie's choice of a nipple delay procedure - surgery that took place about two weeks before her mastectomies.
For women that can safely keep their nipples after a mastectomy, there are several techniques to spare the nipple. A nipple delay is not a routine procedure for a prophylactic mastectomy. Nipple delay, which most women might call "mastectomy delay" is more commonly used for women who have already had some plastic surgery done to the breast, such as a breast reduction mammaplasty, which would leave scar tissue.
A patient who is a good candidate for a nipple delay procedure may have a choice between two sites for her incision. It may be beneath the breast or on the edge of the areola. A plastic surgeon can work to minimize the resulting scar, so that the reconstructed breast looks very natural. The patient will need to observe good scar maintenance after the surgery, and must stop smoking in order to ensure proper healing of the skin. If you're interested in the benefits of nipple-sparing and want to understand more about the nipple delay procedure, here's an article all about different aspects of the Nipple Delay Surgical Procedure.
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