Fat Necrosis 18 Months After Breast Reduction. Will Anything Other Than Surgery Help?

The fat necrosis has caused my nipple to pull inward. Also, my nipple is often itchy. Is there any way other than surgery to sort this out? Accupuncture for instance? My procedure was done by students in a Government hospital and I had requested a lift only but was given a reduction from a DD to a B/C cup. I cannot afford to go to a private hospital to have this sorted out and am really nervous about going back to the Government hospital. Please advise. Shani - Johannesburg, S.A.

Doctor Answers 6

Breast Reduction complication/ fat necrosis

Thank you for the question.
Fat necrosis may gradually decrease in size (may even liquefy and drain)  spontaneously. Other times, resection of the unhealthy tissue is necessary. If resection is undertaken it should be done in a conservative fashion avoiding removal of surrounding healthy tissue.
Although the nipple retraction that you are describing may be related to the changes after breast reduction surgery you should also make sure there is no other culprit (breast cancer can also present with nipple inversion/retraction).
I hope this helps.

San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,484 reviews

Fat necrosis and breast reduction

If you have fat necrosis that is distorting the shape of your breast, you may want to consider excision of the tissue that is causing the problem.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 28 reviews

What to due about Fat necrosis?


I am sorry to hear about the issues with your breasts.  Unfortunately,  I am not aware of any non surgical methods to improve your nipple/areola retraction.  It has been 18 months since your went to the Gov't hospital maybe there has been some change.  It never hurts to go back for only a consult.  If you are still uneasy after that then make other plans.

Dr. ES

Fat necrosis after breast reduction

Fat necrosis may occur after breast reduction, and is due to lack of blood supply to certain parts of the breast tissue. If the areas are very small, they may resolve on their own. However, if the nipple retraction persists after 18 months, you may need operative intervention to remove the affected tissue. You should definitely obtain a consultation with a plastic or breast surgeon to make sure the nipple retraction is not due to another cause.

Olivia Hutchinson, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

Treatment of Breast Fat Necrosis

Fat necrosis is caused by a significant reduction or interruption of the blood supply to the fat and is a known complication of Breast Reduction. While small pockets of fat necrosis MAY resolve without surgery, large areas require surgical resection. The operation is essentially a lumpectomy in which the affected tissue is removed leaving behind living breast tissue. Depending on the size of the area, it may need to be associated with shifting breast tissue around to prevent dimpling and sunken retracted areas.  Good Luck.

Dr. Peter A Aldea

Peter A. Aldea, MD
Memphis Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 108 reviews

Fa tnecrosis following breast reduction

Probably the best treatment for fat necrosis is resection. I am not aware of a non-surgical method of treatment.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 81 reviews

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