Nipple Numbness After Breast Reduction

I had a breast reduction a few days ago and I went back to the dr for a check up and he rubbed my L nipple and asked if I could feel and I said no. Then he rubbed the R nipple and I told him yes. Then he said my Left nipple feeling would come back. How can he know this for sure? If the feeling does come back, when does it usually happen?

Doctor Answers (6)

Breast Reduction and Nipple Numbness?


Thank you for the question.

Although numbness of the nipple/areola is a known complication of most types of breast surgery,  often the numbness is temporary.  It may take several months or up to one year before sensation returns.

Best wishes.

San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 681 reviews

Nipple sensation


It is quite common for patients to have some numbness after bresat surgery. This is usually due to swelling. In most cases it will return.

Steven Wallach, MD
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 15 reviews

VIDEO (click here): Breast reduction


No one can answer this definitively but odds are that it will come back because it is statistically likely.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 41 reviews

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Nipple sensation after breast reduction


 During a breast reduction the nerves innervating the skin of the breast as well as the nipple can be disturbed or damaged, causing "numbness" to those areas.  You may also experience sensations of hot and cold or tingling which are all normal.  Nerves regenerate slowly so patience is the key.  There is a small chance that the lack of sensation to your nipple is permanent. Give it a couple of months and you will have a more accurate idea if this will get better. I hope this helps.

Best wishes,

Neil J. Zemmel, MD

Neil J. Zemmel, MD, FACS
Richmond Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 45 reviews

Nipple numbness with breast surgery


It is possible that the nerve to the nipple can be permanently damaged during breast reduction surgery. However, this is not usually the case.  More frequently, any sensory changes are temporary.  This is true for numbness or hypersensitivity.  Nerve repair is very slow, but you should detect gradual return of sensation beginning in just a few months, though complete repair may take a year or longer.  There is nothing you can do to speed the process.

R. Samuel Bryant, MD
Lincoln Plastic Surgeon
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Nipple Numbness after Breast Reduction


Nipple numbness is usually temporary.  Feeling in the nipple should return within a year, if not sooner. 

Robert N. Young, MD
San Antonio Plastic Surgeon
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These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.