Learn about the Federal Women's Health and Cancer Rights Act of 1998, as well as individual state guidelines for breast reconstruction insurance coverage. Creating the nipple areola is the final component to making your breast reconstruction complete. After optimal symmetry between the breasts has been achieved, the nipple areola reconstruction can be done. Historically, one technique included sharing a piece of the nipple from the opposite breast. In modern approaches to nipple reconstruction, the nipple mound is created from skin taken as a local flap on the reconstructed breast. All nipple reconstructions lose some projection over time as part of the normal wound healing process.
Own tissue generally provides a natural breast restoration without sacrificing a woman's muscles in the process. The aim of BRA Foundation (formerly known as the Didyma Foundation) is to share the best and most current information for cancer patients facing breast reconstruction. Please contact Rogerio by either phone or email in order to arrange a consultation with a breast reconstructive surgeon.
This patient opted to have the areola tattooed using the matching color in the shape of a heart. This photo (and this tattoo) was done many years ago and has been on this site for a long time.
This one was done by Amanda Pepper at Be My Canvas in St Louis, MO both the design elements and the nipples are tattooed. Thank you for the information (and photos) that you post on your website regarding breast reconstruction tattoos. My plastic surgeon hasn't actually seen my tattoos yet but his entire office staff has and they were all amazed at the difference between my 3 D tatt and the skin grafts and tatt process they do in the office (with 20 years of tattooing experience).
Again, thank you for the service you provide to people who have endured mastectomies and thanks so much for sharing the photos. Breast implants used in reconstruction cannot generally be placed directly in the space created by the removal of breast tissue. For women who wish to undergo restorative breast surgery without an implant, natural-tissue reconstructive procedures may be appealing.
There have been numerous approaches to nipple reconstruction over the last 30 years, and with several options available, surgeons can utilize whichever method is most suitable for their patients. There are a number of factors that help determine which method of nipple reconstruction is right for you.

This surgery is not used today, because it transfers breast tissue to the reconstruction that could potentially form a new cancer. Various local flaps have been described, including the Skate flap, the C-V flap and the Star flap. The risk of wound complications in nipple reconstruction is very low in patients with no history of prior radiation, but common in the radiated breast. The rate of recovery depends on what other revisions are done simultaneously, and where the donor site for the areola graft is located. The surgeon has since called Chip and inquired into referring patients to his tattoo parlour.
The reason for this is that an implant placed directly below the skin will generally not produce cosmetically desirable results and has a high risk of eroding through the surgical incision or through the skin itself. A tissue matrix is a substitute for your own tissue made from either human or animal tissue.
These include the quality of tissue on the reconstructed breast, and whether you are having nipple reconstruction with or without a surrounding graft. Another method used in the past involved taking a full thickness skin graft from the labia to create a dark colored areola. In the case of failed nipple reconstruction, it may be necessary to revise the reconstruction with another local skin flap. This way if she decides to change back to a more conventional appearance, she can easily do so at a later date. When I discussed this with my plastic surgeon (twice over the course of about a year and a half), he had no clue what I was referring to.
The upper portion of the breast implant is placed under the lifted muscle; tissue matrix is then used to span the space between the edge of the detached muscle and the chest, thereby covering the lower portion of the breast implant.
Alloderm®, one of several available tissue-matrix products, is made from donated human skin using a proprietary technique. Unfortunately, graft failure or rejection and transmission of disease are risks associated with the use of tissue-matrix products.
Some patients are comfortable without having a nipple, and do not wish to have further surgery. The areola can then be either tattooed, or it can be reconstructed with a skin graft taken from elsewhere on the body. Sometimes, the use of dermis or fat grafts, and fillers such as Radiesse, may be necessary to improve nipple projection. Please let me know if you have any questions or if you would like assistance designing something special.

When I showed him the temporary 3 D nipple tatts I had purchased online, he still needed a little more information from me but finally caught on to the idea and showed me how to measure for proper placement. With these direct-to-implant surgery procedures, a pocket is created for the implant by detaching the lower edge of the pectoralis muscle from the chest and spanning the space between the edge of the detached muscle and the chest with tissue matrix.
The tissue matrix is attached between the muscle edge and the chest wall so that behind the muscle and the implanted tissue matrix a pocket large enough to accommodate an implant can be created without the need for tissue expansion. Also, these grafts may be hair bearing, and areolar pigment is easier achieved with medical tattooing. Common donor sites for the graft include the abdominal scar from a flap reconstruction, the inner thigh, or the buttock crease.
AlloDermA® has also been utilized by some surgeons at the time of nipple reconstruction to maximize projection and correct flattening.
Also you may refer to the Post-Operative Nipple Reconstruction section to learn about care after nipple surgery. Also if you have had work of this nature done and would like to send me photos - I will give credit to the artist that did your work. He very honestly told me I should speak with my tattoo artist and get the permanent tattoos done professionally if I went the 3 D route. Not only is it beautiful and realistic, but it takes some of the flatness away from the breast mound (mine don't project out very much) and also makes the scar look much less visible. In this manner, the tissue matrix provides an added layer of tissue between the implant and the breast skin.
This allows color pigmentation to simulate the nipple areola without the contour of an actual nipple. I did some research and found your website (among others) and am very much appreciate all the photos you have posted along with the process of the procedure.
I didn't think that I was letting my scars and my new breasts bother me, but I feel like a new woman status post tattooing!
Still, the reconstruction of the nipple areola helps to put the finishing touches on the new breast after a long journey in reconstruction. I knew that I wanted something done besides just the nipple and areola complex, but it was very difficult for me to design a tattoo without being able to see how my ideas might work on a breast mound.

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