Skip Navigation LinksHome > November 2013 - Volume 132 - Issue 5 > Long-Term Sensory Recovery of Nipple-Areola Complex followin...
Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery:
doi: 10.1097/PRS.0b013e3182a3bf05
Breast: Original Articles

Long-Term Sensory Recovery of Nipple-Areola Complex following Superolateral Pedicled Reduction Mammaplasty

Longo, Benedetto M.D., Ph.D.; Campanale, Antonella M.D.; Farcomeni, Alessio Ph.D.; Santanelli, Fabio M.D., Ph.D.

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Abstract

Background: The aim of this study was to investigate nipple-areola complex sensation at 48-month follow-up following superolateral pedicled reduction mammaplasty using the pressure-specified sensory device.

Methods: Data regarding nipple-areola complex sensation for static and moving one- and two-point discrimination were collected from 30 active group hypertrophic-breasted patients undergoing superolateral pedicled reduction mammaplasty preoperatively, at 6 months, and at 48 months, and from a control group of 30 unoperated women with normal-sized breasts. Breast volume was assessed using the BREAST-V instrument.

Results: For the nipple, static one-point discrimination showed that mean pressure thresholds for the active group at 48 months were 4.10 and 4.19 times higher than preoperatively and in the control group (p < 0.001), respectively; moving one-point discrimination showed that mean pressure thresholds for the active group at 48 months were 4.08 and 3.23 times higher than preoperatively and in the control group (p < 0.001), respectively. For the areola, static one-point discrimination showed that mean pressure thresholds in the active group at 48 months were 4.12 and 4.83 times higher than preoperatively and in the control group (p < 0.001), respectively; moving one-point discrimination showed that mean pressure thresholds from the active group at 48 months were 4.56 and 4.46 times higher than preoperatively and in the control group (p < 0.001), respectively.

Conclusions: Despite a slight worsening at 6 months after surgery, patients who had undergone superolateral pedicled reduction mammaplasty showed significant nipple-areola complex sensibility reduction at 48-month follow-up. Although the nipple-areola complex of hypertrophic-breasted patients was seen to be nonsignificantly less sensitive than normal-sized breasts, a significant decrease of sensation was observed following reduction mammaplasty.

CLINICAL QUESTION/LEVEL OF EVIDENCE: Therapeutic, II.

©2013American Society of Plastic Surgeons

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