Nipple reconstruction after implant-based breast reconstruction: A "matched-pair" outcome analysis focusing on the effects of radiotherapy
ABSTRACT BACKGROUND: The major focus of research when addressing nipple reconstruction has been on developing new techniques to provide for long-lasting nipple projection. Rarely, has the outcome of nipple reconstruction as it relates to postoperative morbidity, particularly after implant-based breast reconstruction, been analyzed. METHODS: A "matched-pair" study was designed to specifically answer the question whether a history of radiotherapy predisposes to a higher complication rate after nipple reconstruction in patients after implant-based breast reconstruction. Only patients with a history of unilateral radiotherapy who underwent bilateral mastectomy and implant-based breast reconstruction followed by bilateral nipple reconstruction were included in the study. RESULTS: A total of 17 patients (i.e. 34 nipple reconstructions) were identified who met inclusion criteria. The mean age of the study population was 43.5 years (range, 23-69). Complications were seen after a total of 8 nipple reconstructions (23.5 percent). Of these, 7 complications were seen on the irradiated side (41.2 percent) (p = 0.03). CONCLUSION: While nipple reconstruction is a safe procedure after implant-based breast reconstruction in patients without a history of radiotherapy the presence of an irradiated field converts it to a procedure with a significant increase in postoperative complication rate.
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ABSTRACT: Numerous procedures are available for nipple reconstruction with no true universal favorite. This study presents long-term follow-up data for nipple reconstruction using the C-V flap technique. Patients were identified by searching the Breast Reconstruction Database, and they were asked to return for a follow-up visit. All those who underwent nipple reconstruction using the C-V flap technique between January of 1992 and December of 1996 were reviewed in an attempt to conduct a long-term follow-up evaluation. The response was poor, and 11 patients participated in the study and returned for follow-up. They all completed a questionnaire, which focused on patient satisfaction using a visual analogue scale. Nipple measurements were taken with a caliper and compared with the opposite breast for symmetry. Fourteen nipple reconstructions were evaluated in 11 patients with an average follow-up of 5.3 years. All patients had undergone transverse rectus abdominis musculocutaneous (TRAM) flap reconstructions. Patient satisfaction was 42 percent with nipple projection, 62 percent with pigmentation, and 26 percent with sensation. Overall patient satisfaction with the procedure was 81 percent. Average nipple projection of the reconstructed nipple was 3.77 mm and was not statistically different when compared with the opposite nipple. Long-term subjective evaluation of the C-V flap technique does report a loss in nipple projection; however, overall patient satisfaction at 5.3 years is good, as is the ability to restore symmetry with the opposite breast.Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery 09/2001; 108(2):361-9. · 3.33 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Maintaining projection and achieving patient satisfaction are two key challenges in nipple reconstruction. Skin flap techniques such as CV and star flaps are currently favoured. The "Hamburger" technique was described in 2007 using stacked conchal cartilage discs within a skin flap construct, but no longer-term outcomes have been published. We evaluate both projection and patient satisfaction following nipple reconstruction using this technique. Twenty-three nipple reconstructions performed between 2007 and 2009 were reviewed. A standard pre-tattooed cylinder skin pattern was used with 3 punch biopsies of conchal cartilage harvested through a post-auricular incision. At follow up, reconstructed nipples and donor sites were examined. Nipple projection was measured bilaterally. Patients completed a short questionnaire. Mean follow up was 24 months (9-31). Mean projection was 3.3 mm (range 0-5 mm) and was well matched to the contralateral nipple. No donor site keloid scarring was observed, however cartilage defects were easily palpable in all cases. Patients were satisfied or very satisfied with overall cosmesis in 91% of cases. They were satisfied or very satisfied with projection in 57% of cases. All patients found the donor site acceptable. With the "hamburger" technique medium-term projection was maintained in most cases and was comparable to published data for other techniques with or without cartilage. Patient satisfaction was high even when projection was not well maintained. This suggests that patient satisfaction and projection are not necessarily related. Donor site morbidity was low.Journal of Plastic Reconstructive & Aesthetic Surgery 09/2011; 65(2):207-12. DOI:10.1016/j.bjps.2011.09.014 · 1.47 Impact Factor
Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery 07/2011; 128(1):311-4. DOI:10.1097/PRS.0b013e3182195826 · 3.33 Impact Factor