Nipples Too High After Breast Reduction

I had a breast reduction 2 months ago and my nipples are way too high, placed somewhere between 19 and 15cm. I know it's still too early for the final result, but I'm afraid they will not get any lower. How long should I wait before I consider "repairing" that?

Doctor Answers 8

High Nipples after a Breast Reduction

Overly elevated nipple complexes after a breast Reduction / Breast Lift is a known complication which will NOT get better with time. As gravity changes the shape of the breasts and pulls them further down the unflattering results are termed STAR GAZING NIPPLES. Correcting this deformity is challenging.

The correction is best done when the breasts have achieved their stable position and the post surgical inflammation has subsided - usually 6-8 months. At that time several techniques may be used based on how high the nipple /areola are located, the ideal location of the nipple complex on the breast and the location of the under the breast fold.

Speak to your surgeon and see what he/she suggests.

Good Luck.

Memphis Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 109 reviews

High Nipple Revision Timing

There is usually a way to lower your nipples and areolae to a more favorable position. An examination is critical for the best opinion. Most likely you could benefit from raising your inframammary crease and converting the lollipop lift to a T to shorten the vertical scar creating more upper pole fullness. An exam is needed to confirm. Consult with a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon experienced in revisional surgery. See below for suggestions. I would wait between 6-12 months after your original surgery -  until you have a final result and your tissues are once again supple prior to doing a revision.

Larry S. Nichter, MD, MS, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 157 reviews

Nipples Too High after Breast Reduction?

I'm sorry to hear about the results after breast reduction surgery. I would suggest waiting at least 6 months after surgery before contemplating revisionary surgery. At that point, you may want to visit with several well experienced  plastic surgeons to discuss options.

Best wishes.

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,499 reviews

Nipples too high

If your nipples were set at 19 cms or so, they may be a bit high for you. You will have to wait at least 6 months or longer to have them revised, but it is very difficult to lower the nipples.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

"Riding High"

 It sounds unlikely that your nipple/areola complexes will settle lower.  It is best to wait 3-6 months after surgery to allow settling and softening of the breast tissues before attempting to lower the nipple/areola complex.

Dr. ES

Overly high nipples after breast reduction

Unfortunately this will not self-correct and even surgical revision is difficult.  You should wait 3-4 months and then visit some other surgeons for their advice.  The best way to position the nipple is based on its relationship to the crease below the breast rather than by measuring from the sternal notch.  That way, I never see this problem.  The only patients who have come to me with this have all had their nipples positioned based on the distance from the notch. 

Richard P. Rand, MD, FACS
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 67 reviews

Nipples can be lowered after breast reduction.


1) This is one of the hardest deformities to correct after breast reduction. The nipples will not come down on their own.

2) Wait several months to allow the scars to soften before having a revision. When, the nipples are brought down, I am afraid you will have vertical scars above the nipples.

George J. Beraka, MD (retired)
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Correction of Highly Placed Nipples

You should wait another 4-5 months to see if there is any change in your situation.  Unfortunately there probably will not be an improvement; in fact, it may worsen if  some "bottoming-out" occurs.  It is almost always possible to elevate the nipple-areolar complex but it is very difficult to lower a nipple which has been placed too high.

John Whitt, MD (retired)
Louisville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 2 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.