Areola / Nipple Reduction

An areola/nipple reduction surgery is an elective plastic surgery procedure, which helps to reduce the size of the areola/nipple area.

It is an extremely quick procedure and is usually considered by women who feel that their nipples are too big in relation to the size of their breasts. Breast augmentation surgery and breast reduction surgery has also become popular, therefore in some cases it is not the actual breast that needs reducing, it is the size of the nipple and/or areola.

The nipple ideally is located in the centre of the breast and is surrounded by the areola, which is the darker pink skin, which is in the shape of a circle. This surgery is not only for women, men also suffer with overly large nipples and larger than normal areola and this can lead to lack of self confidence, lack of self esteem and embarrassment.

Why have Areola (Nipple) Reduction Surgery?

Some individuals are affected so badly by the size of their nipples and areola area that they resort to becoming celibate. The good news for these individuals is that plastic surgeons have found a way in which to successfully reduce the size of the nipple and areola. Not only is it now a quick and simple procedure, it can have the individual ready to face the world, with new breasts and greater self-confidence.

Areola/nipple reduction is a surprisingly simple operation and is virtually risk free however, one should know that before having this surgery, that once the nipple and surrounding areola have been reduced, there is no way of reversing the procedure. It is therefore important to make sure that you have gone through all eventualities with your plastic surgeon prior to the operation. Nipple surgery is not usually performed on its own; it is often combined with other breast surgeries such as a breast lift, breast enhancement or breast reduction surgery.

There are quite a few different techniques for the procedure, so it really depends on the individual’s requirements as well as the surgeons’ preferences. The common technique is to remove some of the nipple and the surgeon stitching the slightly smaller nipple back to the breast using dissolvable stitches would then follow this. This would mean that no stitches would have to be removed.

If the individual requires an areola reduction, then the surgeon will remove either the outer part of the areola or the inner part and then stitch the wound to the required size. If the areola is too large, then there is a very special technique where by the surgeon makes the incision all around the areola as well as an incision from the nipple down the centre of the breast, part of the areola is removed and the breast is stitched back up again. The name of this technique is called ‘Lollipop technique’ as the incision forms the shape of a lollipop.

Some individuals find that due to the sheer weight of the large areola and nipples, this can cause the breasts to point downwards. However, for some, after having their nipple and areola reduced in size this tends to lift the breasts up a little, removing the need to have a breast lift.

Risks and Complications

Generally, modern day surgery is considered safe.

There are always risks associated with having surgery under a general anaesthetic. These risks include; suppressed breathing, blood clots in the legs, blood clots in the lungs, heart failure and even death. This will be discussed with you in your consultation and again just before you go down to your surgery. Approximately one-third of patients who receive an anaesthetic during surgery will experience “anaesthesia sickness” or post-operative nausea and vomiting (POVN).

The risks and complications associated with the nipple and areola reduction itself can include infection as a potential risk and complication, however it is extremely rare. Infection can usually be treated with a course of antibiotics.

The nipple area is the most sensitive part of the breast and one of the most sensitive parts of the body. When having this reduction surgery, this can cause the nerves to be damaged accidentally, which can lead to loss of sensation. Loss of sensation is pretty common; however it usually wears off after the wound has healed. There are however, some who never regain their feeling back in their nipples.

The ability to breastfeed can be affected by the procedure but this is rare, even if you have lost the feeling in your nipple.

Some individuals loose the pigment in their skin after the procedure. The pigment is what gives the areola that well-known colour change. Losing the colour of the nipple can be another complication when having this procedure.

In the worst cases, some men and women loose the blood flow to the nipple after having this surgery; this can result in the nipple turning black in colour and can even result in the nipple falling off. This is an extremely rare complication.

Q. How long will the results of this procedure last for?

A. The results of this procedure should be permanent; however there is no way of knowing for sure how the body will change in the future.

Q. Does smoking cause any issue when undergoing this procedure?

A. Smoking can slow down the healing process as well as affect your breathing whilst under general anaesthetic. Smoking can be extremely detrimental to not only your health but also the healing of your nipple reduction so the answer is not to smoke.

Q. Can I have the surgery under sedation and local anaesthetic?

A. Yes it is possible to have this surgery with a local anaesthetic and sedation however it really is up to your surgeon. Make sure that you discuss all of your options prior to having the surgery.

Q. Will my insurance cover my nipple/areola reduction surgery?

A. You will have to ask your insurance company as they all have different policies. Normally it is very unlikely for your insurance to pay for an elective plastic surgery.

Q. Will I have to stay in hospital after my nipple/areola surgery?

A. It depends on which form of anaesthesia you and your surgeon choose. If you have a general anaesthetic you may need to stay in hospital overnight for observation, to ensure no complications arise. If you have a local anaesthetic with sedation, if you recover fully, there is no reason why you cannot go home after the operation.

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Perfect Nose IS THERE A PERFECT NOSE? We ask the excellent Dr George Marcells, Facial Plastic Surgeon November 25, 2015 - Rhinoplasty (more commonly referred to as a ‘nose job’) is a surgical procedure that reshapes or resizes the nose. It’s performed for a variety of reasons, which might include removing a visible bump on the nasal bridge, reshaping a nasal tip that’s droopy or enlarged, or re-aligning a nose that is off-centre or crooked through genetics or an injury. It might also be necessary to correct breathing issues. Dr George Marcells, a highly respected and talented Facial Plastic Surgeon based in Bondi Junction in NSW, recently convened the AAFPS Rhinoplasty Symposium in Sydney and is well known for his excellence in facial plastic surgery. We asked Dr Marcells to give us some insight into what can be achieved by having a quality Rhinoplasty procedure done by a qualified and suitably experience Australian practitioner. “Rhinoplasty is a complex surgery that combines both art and science, making it one of the most difficult surgeries to master. Even the slightest change in shape or structure can cause breathing problems and other functional issues. This is why rhinoplasty has a very high revision rates compared to other types of cosmetic surgeries.” Getting a nose reshaped is one of the most common cosmetic surgery procedures. […]
Dr George Marcells Interview Interview with Dr George Marcells, Facial Plastic Surgeon November 19, 2015 - Trish: Now we’re here today with Dr Marcells. Dr Marcells is an ear, nose and throat specialist and he’s also a facial plastic surgeon. He is the current President of the Australasian Academy of Facial Plastic Surgeons. He is the Medical Director of Bondi Junction Private Hospital and he also consults at About Face Clinic which is located in Bondi. Thank you so much for taking time to talk to us today Dr Marcells. Dr Marcells: Thanks for having me Trish. Trish: You’ve got a reputation as the guru on the deep plane facelift, can you just give is quick run down of the procedure and who can actually benefit from this procedure? Dr Marcells: Ok, well Trish, I think the deep plane facelift is the best facial and neck rejuvenation surgery available. I think it gives the most natural results; it doesn’t give that telltale sign of a pulled look. It’s not a new surgery; it’s been around for 20 years, even since the 1990s so it’s very tried and tested. In fact, when it came into vogue, it was touted as the new facelift to give natural results. A lot of doctors started to do it and they […]
Cocaine and Nose Surgery Reconstructive Nose Surgery From Excessive Cocaine Use October 21, 2015 - One of the topics discussed at the recent AAFPS Masters Symposium on Functional and Aesthetic Rhinoplasty that was really interesting and a little left of centre (which I always love!) was the harmful effects of cocaine usage to the nose. Whilst we consider drug usage bad for our mind and bodies in general (including the skin, hair, internal organs, cancer, etc.), this was an insight into a side effect of cocaine use not everyone thinks about and is more common than it should be. There are several consequences of snorting drugs through your nose. They can include: Epistaxis (nosebleeds) Chronic Infections (congestion/discharge) Perforated Septum (hole in the nasal septum) Nasal Collapse Anosmia (Loss of Smell) Nasal Deformity Nasal Obstruction Nose Whistling Snoring Septal perforation (where there is a hole in the nasal septum) can cause bleeding, discharge and “whistling” during breathing. It can only be fixed with surgery and reconstruction of the nose. Excessive cocaine use is a major cause of septum perforation due to the snorting of the drug triggering the blood vessels in the nose to constrict; meaning supply of blood (and therefore oxygen) to the inner lining of the nose is reduced. When the blood is unable […]
Rhinoplasty Masters Symposium 2015 Who Nose What There Is To Nose About The Nose – The Rhinoplasty Symposium Wrap Up October 13, 2015 - You know I just love the industry that is all about quality plastic and cosmetic surgery. Last weekend The Australasian Academy of Facial Plastic Surgery (AAFPS) combined with the Australian Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) to put on a spectacular and informative conference and Rhinoplasty Masters’ Symposium in Sydney. The focus this year was on the nose, and the latest techniques and issues surrounding the specialty today. Some of the best Plastic Surgeons & ENT’s (ear nose & throat) gathered from all over Australia & NZ to hear world-class plastic surgeons and ENT surgeons speak about some fascinating topics. One of my personal favourites was Dr Dean Toriumi from Chicago USA presenting on Ethnic Rhinoplasty and how to preserve one’s ethnicity while creating a pleasing aesthetic result. He said, “it’s all about balancing the nose with the surrounding facial features.” Whilst there are differing opinions on what makes a perfect nose, it is agreed that a natural, un-operated look is obviously desirable. Dr Toriumi made it clear to his audience that “I wouldn’t do anything to a patient that I wouldn’t do to myself, my wife or my children.” However, it must be remembered that the nose has a function […]
Dr Yong Ju Yang Dr Yong-ju Yang – Rhinoplasty Master! October 9, 2015 - Dr Yong-ju Jang, MD, PhD is Professor at the Department of Otolaryngology at the Asan Medical Center located in the University of Ulsan College of Medicine in Seoul, Korea. Immediate past president of the Korean Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery and also serving as the Vice-president of Pan-Asian Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Dr Jang has written two textbooks on rhinoplasty, and contributed chapters to various rhinoplasty textbooks. He has published 43 scientific papers on rhinoplasty in a number of international journals and was an invited speaker on rhinoplasty in 61 international conferences held in more than 20 countries. He is therefore, an extremely knowledgeable industry heavyweight on the subject of Rhinoplasty. Dr Jang is also one of the keynote speakers at the AAFPS Conference on in Sydney at the moment. I was lucky enough to be able to ask Dr Jang a few questions. Questions: PSH: How does Rhinoplasty differ in Asian societies as opposed to Western societies? Is there a different ideal of beauty and the type of nose that is requested? Also, are there any structural differences and considerations when performing rhinoplasty surgery? Dr Jang: In Asian rhinoplasty, making the nose bigger and […]
AAFPS Masters Symposium 2015 Rhinoplasty Master Symposium: Sydney Nose Best October 8, 2015 - The nose takes centre stage as over 150 of Australia’s top Facial Plastic Surgeons and Plastic Surgeons meet in Sydney this week for the inaugural combined conference of the AAFPS and ASPS – focusing on Functional and Aesthetic Rhinoplasty. Better breathing, less snoring and marital facial harmony are all more achievable when rhinoplasty is performed at its best. “Nobody knows more about noses than the keynote speakers we have attracted to this meeting,” says Australasian Academy of Facial Plastic Surgery (AAFPS) President and Symposium Co-Convenor, Dr George Marcells. “If this meeting was held anywhere else in the world, there would be 1,000 surgeons attending,” says Symposium Co-Convenor, Mr Peter Callan, a Plastic Surgeon and member of the Australian Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS). The intimate nature of this meeting being held at the National Maritime Museum in Sydney from 8-10 October 2015 provides an opportunity for sharing close to 1,500 years of combined knowledge and hands-on experience with what is regarded as one of the most difficult procedures to perform. “What makes a good nose job?” “Who has the most desirable looking nose?” “What techniques provide the best, most predictable, & long lasting results for patients?” …These are just some […]
Plastic Surgery Cost Pricey Procedures – What does Plastic Surgery Cost? January 28, 2015 - What does it cost? This is one of the first questions anyone usually asks when it comes to looking at plastic surgery. The answer is it greatly varies. We have done the research for you and come up with a general price guide for each procedure. These are an approximate guide only; each doctor, surgery and clinic can vary dramatically in their pricing. It can also depend on how much work is involved in your particular procedure, which hospital you choose and how much after care is required. Whether you are insured or not can also make a big difference. It pays to note that just because a particular surgeon charges less, does not by any means make them a less competent surgeon. In fact, quite a few of the leading surgeons actually have very competitive prices. When asking for an estimate on a particular procedure make sure you ask the surgeon if that includes your hospital stay, the anesthetist and the pre and post op consultation fees. The prices we have listed below are inclusive of all charges involved in the procedures and are in Australian Dollars. Breast Augmentation $7,000 – $15,000 Abdominoplasty $6,000 – $16,000 Rhinoplasty $8,000 – […]
Dr George Marcells Dr George Marcells – An Interview November 6, 2014 - Dr George Marcells is undisputedly considered a leader in the field of Rhinoplasty and is often consulted by other top plastic surgeons looking to tap into his expertise. President of the AAFPS, he presents regularly at Facial Plastic Surgery conferences both in Australia and overseas, and was recently one of the key players at the Australasian Academy of Facial Plastic Surgery’s (AAFPS) The Triennial Masters’ Symposium, focusing on Blepharoplasty and Upper Facial Rejuvenation held in Sydney in September. We were lucky enough to be able to ask Dr Marcells a few questions. You are the leader in the Deep Plane Facelift. Can you give us a brief description of what that is? The deep plane facelift is a highly anatomical lift that places an emphasis on structure to give long lasting, natural results. My aim is to re-contour the neck, jawline and mid-face into a natural, more youthful position. This deep fixation takes the tension off the skin so as not to get a pulled appearance. While the Deep Plane Facelift is heralded as a much more successful and natural looking facelift, are there any candidates for the procedure you would not recommend for this kind of lift? Are there […]


  1. What are the latest plastic surgery trends for 2015? - […] Often done in conjunction with a breast augmentation or reduction, this surgery is gaining momentum as a standalone procedure.…

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