After breast reconstruction surgery, you can have your nipple reconstructed as well. This is usually done after the main reconstructive surgery has healed, but in some instances can be done at the same time. The new nipple is formed from moving skin on the reconstructed breast into a nipple shape. The position of the new nipple is chosen relative to the nipple on your other breast. If both have been reconstructed, the new nipples are placed symmetrically on the new breasts. Occasionally a skin graft is used in the reconstruction of a nipple. The nipple is made a little larger than required as over time it will shrink down to the required size. Once fully healed, your new nipple and the surrounding skin can be tattooed to create a more natural looking nipple and areola (pigmented skin around a nipple). The colour can be matched to your opposite breast.
If a nipple reconstruction is the only procedure you are undergoing, it can be carried out under local anaesthetic and as a day case. You may be having other procedures done at the same time e.g. surgery on your other breast to match the reconstructed breast or adjustments to your reconstructed breast. If this is the case, your nipple reconstruction may be done while you have a general anaesthetic.