Copyright © 2023 Harris Plastic Surgery. All Rights Reserved
PROCEDURES / BREAST
Nipple Sparing Mastectomy
A nipple-sparing mastectomy is an approach to breast cancer prevention that reduces your cancer risk while maintaining your physical appearance. It’s not possible in all cases, but for women who meet certain cancer risk and anatomic criteria, it can be an option that allows you to maintain your natural breast shape and nipple sensation. At Harris Plastic Surgery, we know the decision to get a preventative mastectomy is weighty. That’s why we coordinate your nipple-sparing mastectomy from beginning to end.
Are You a Candidate for Nipple-Sparing Mastectomy?
It’s impossible to determine if someone is a candidate for a nipple-sparing mastectomy without meeting them first. However, here are some of the things we look for to determine if someone may be a good fit;
- Pure prophylactic surgery: A purely prophylactic mastectomy is one where there is no cancer present, but the patient may be at a high risk of developing it. We typically see this in cases where someone has a BRCA gene or other genetic mutation that makes them more susceptible.
- Early-stage cancer: It may be possible to complete a nipple-sparing mastectomy for patients with early breast cancer without involvement in the nipple or areola. However, it’s important to measure the oncological risk with the benefits of this type of surgery.
- Adequate blood supply: The nipple must be repositioned for the mastectomy and reconstruction. In patients with preexisting breast drooping, where the nipple is sagging below its ideal position, a preliminary breast lift may be recommended before the mastectomy to reposition the nipple and safely allow a nipple preserving mastectomy. There are also advanced techniques that allow for some nipple repositioning at the time of nipple sparing mastectomy.
- Patient cooperation: Even though the mastectomy reduces cancer risk, it doesn’t eliminate it entirely. The patient will need to commit to follow-up screenings and surveillance post-surgery.
Individuals who meet those criteria might be good candidates for prophylactic mastectomy and reconstruction. At Harris Plastic Surgery, we understand the stress a decision like this puts on you. That’s why we take a total approach to coordinating your care.
Coordinate Your Care Through Harris Plastic Surgery
If you’re a suitable candidate for a nipple-sparing mastectomy, you’ll be presented with a few options for breast tissue removal and subsequent reconstruction. At Harris Plastic Surgery, we coordinate all these phases so you can focus on recovery.
Under New York state law, you’re entitled to coverage under your insurance policy for prophylactic mastectomies. Our experienced patient care coordinator obtains the necessary preauthorizations to manage the financial aspect of surgery.
We connect you with an expert breast surgeon to handle the removal phase of the nipple-sparing mastectomy. Dr. Harris works collaboratively with this surgeon, providing a detailed surgical plan for the next phase of treatment.
Dr. Harris takes over surgery from here, sometimes in an immediate reconstruction, and performs the meticulous procedures necessary to reconstruct the breast, ensuring a result that aligns with the patient’s aesthetic goals and post-mastectomy needs.
The entire nipple-sparing mastectomy process starts with a consultation at Harris Plastic Surgery. Dr. Harris will provide a detailed assessment based on your medical history, breast cancer risk, goals, and recovery needs. Our total patient care approach will give you the support you need to recover and a surgical outcome that exceeds your expectations.