Nipple Healing After Surgery: White Scab

I had a breast reduction and then had implants put into both breasts to deal with asymetry. im happy overall but im noticing that the breast where the reduction was done has a significant amount of scabbing around the entire nipple.

i had my surgery 11 days ago. my fist visit to the doc he took off the surgical tape and the skin covering the aroela came off with it. everything but the nipple was a fleshy pink colour. now its scabbed over its a white colour but is really this normal?

Doctor Answers 8

Nipple healing

It is best to consult with the plastic surgeon who performed your surgery to assess the healing of your nipple. Most often what you describe is something that will heal on its own in the next month or two. Good luck.

Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Healing after Breast Reduction?

Thank you for the question.

It is difficult to know what is going on without pictures or direct examination.

Superficial wound healing problems and/or scabbing is not unusual after this type of surgery;  these areas tend to heal well and generally do not detract from the final results of surgery.

Continue to follow-up with your plastic surgeon.

Best wishes.

Breast Reduction - Breast Lift and Implants; Now with Scabs, White Tissue, ?Healing

Hi girlwithquestions,

It's difficult to know exactly what's happening - it could be something as simple as some superficial skin loss after surgery or, at the worse, a potentially very significant loss of tissue.  A photo might be helpful but what you'll really need to do is see your plastic surgeon frequently.  Local wound care may be adequate, and might help guide you to an excellent result.

If, on the other hand, this process involves deeper tissues then it may not be such a simple solution.  Remaining under the care of your plastic surgeon is the best approach at this point.

I hope that this helps, and good luck,

Dr. E

White scabs in the areola

It sounds like you may have lost at least a partial thickness of the nipple/areola. This is a relatively rare complication resulting from inadequate blood flow to the skin. If it is only a partial thickness of the skin, regular dressings might be all you need and the areola will regrow the skin. If, unfortunately, it involves the whole thickness of the skin, it may need further surgery, such as skin grafts. Your surgeon will be the best person to advise.

Anindya Lahiri, FRCS (Plast)
Birmingham Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 15 reviews

Nipple Healing After Surgery: White Scab

Sounds like a superficial skin slough, but a photo would surely help. It could be a full thickness skin loss which is very serious. Best to post photo or see your chosen PS more frequently. 

Breast recuction

The first thing would be to know what type of breast reduction was performed. Usually the outer skin does not peel off unless it is a nipple graft. However, many of these type of problems will heal without the need for further surgery.

David L. Abramson, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Nipple areolar slough

This is something that should be discussed with your plastic surgeon.  In almost all cases this is superficial and heals without any problem.  Keep up with your doctor frequently to see how you are healing.

Nipple problem after breast reduction with breast implant

The stiffness and blistering and scab on the areola suggest that the circulation has been compromised and may mean that a portion of the nipple areola could be lost. Your healing is not normal. Keep regular appointments with your surgeon as it will take some time to see you through.

Best of luck,


Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 37 reviews

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.