Why Do Some Plastic Surgeons Use a Lollipop Incision for Tubular/Tuberous Breast Correction?

I have moderate tubular breasts and from some of the scientific journals I've read, a peri-areolar incision should be sufficient for releasing the constricted mammary tissue, correcting areolar hernias and inserting implants. Why then do some plastic surgeons use a lollipop incision for tuberous breast corrections when the scarring is so much more hideous?

Doctor Answers 6

What to do with a tuberous breast?

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Definitely, when it comes to breast lift surgery it can be confusing.  Appreciating the anatomy and determining whether the nipple position truly needs to be elevated is the first step. Typically, in a tuberous breast the nipple position only slightly low but may appear lower due to a deficiency in the lower breast skin or tightness. Therefore, to correct the problem a periareolar incision is used and a implant is used to expand the lower part of the breast. Using a lollipop incision or skin excision below the nipple would be the opposite. So, the surgeon would have to have another reason to perform this type of incision.

Austin Plastic Surgeon
4.4 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

Incisions for tuberous breasts

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The incisions used for tuberous breasts really depends upon the extent of the tuberous deformity and the ptosis. Sometimes a circumareola incision is enough and sometimes a vertical is necessary.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Tuberous breasts

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The answer to the question of whether to perform a lollipop scar or simply a donut scar depends on on every important issue. does the nipple position need be  raised and how much?  If the nipple does not need much or any lift at all, a donut scar probably would work fine  for many tubular breasts.  However, if the nipple is too low down and need s to be lifted  the lollipop works better.  Although the is more scar, the lollipop will prevent the areolae from becoming too wide.

Ronald J. Edelson, MD
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Lollipop incision for tuberous breasts?

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Every surgeon knows what works best in his hands. This condition requires both skin reduction and expansion. You probably won't find any two surgeons that do it exactly the same way, but they all deliver a big improvement.  Dr Foster  Lake Tahoe Plastic Surgery

Lawrence Foster, MD (retired)
Sacramento Plastic Surgeon

Tubular/Tuberous Breast and Peri-Areolar vs Lollipop Incision

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You are correct, in most cases a tubular/tuberous breast shape can be corrected using only a peri-areolar incision.  However, there is a limit concerning the amount of skin that can be removed with this technique.  If there is a significant difference in the diameter of the outer and inner skin cuts, it could result in puckering around the areola.  If there is significant loose skin and/or sagging of the nipples the added lollipop scar may be justified.  Which type of incision will be best in your case is probably going to be a judgement call on the part of your surgeon.  If you are uncertain you could have the peri-areolar lift and if puckering becomes an issue, you could convert the periareolar lift to the lollipop lift.  Best of luck. 

Vincent D. Lepore, MD
San Jose Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 63 reviews

Lollipop incision for tuberous breasts

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Every patient is different.  Likewise every surgeon has their own approaches to tuberous breasts.

I have found that unless there is significant droop, most patients with tuberous breasts are best treated with a periareolar approach.  The vertical scar of the lollipop incision is useful for tightening an excess lower pole which is usually not a problem in tuberous breasts.

York Jay Yates, MD
Salt Lake City Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 189 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.