After BA, The Ring Around my Right Areola Feels Like It Has Snapped, It Doesn't Contract Anymore, What Happened? (photo)

I have had implants for 2 1/2 years the implants seem to be fine they are under the muscle.I had a hard ring around each areola which i thought was just scar tissue but over the last couple of days my right one seems to have snapped and my right areola does not contract anymore it is also a bit bruised and sore the ring around this one is still there but is really soft.If you can please give me some advice that will be fantastic as i am in a panic not knowing what is going on.Cheers

Doctor Answers 7

Change in Areola after Breast Augmentation and Mastopexy(Breast Lift)


Review of the photo indicates that you had a breast lift in addtion to the augmetation.  The hard ring is caused by a permanent suture that is placed in the skin around the areola and then tightened around the areola to minimize the chance of the areola becoming too large and to prevent the scar from widening.  Probably the suture on the right loosened or broke and the areola widened.  Because the areola on the right is stretched more than the left, the muscle fibers in the areola are stretched and can't contract.  It is not a dangerous situation.  Fixing it is optional and depends on how you feel about the appearane. 


Hartford Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 4 reviews

"Snapping" after peri-areolar breast lift (mastopexy)

From your photos it is clear that you have had a breast lift using a technique which gathers the loose skin around the areola.  To maintain the lift and keep the areola from stretching out a non-absorbable purse-string suture is placed around the areola, often using Gore-tex.  Usually the suture stays tight and does its job forever.  Sometimes, however, the knots in the suture can loosen or the suture can break or "snap".  When htat occurs, the areola can widen slightly, as yours has.  You basically have two choices - 1/ Since the asymmetry is relatively minor, you can live with it;  2/ You can have the lift revised and a new peri-areolar purse-string suture can be placed.

Robert Stroup, Jr., MD, FACS
Cleveland Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

Peri-areola mastopexy

The photograph shows your right areola is larger than the left areola.  Most likely the suture that was placed at the time of your BA failed.  As a consequence, there is some bruising and the diameter of the areola has increased.  This could be corrected by repeating the procedure under local with minimal cost.

Best of Luck,

Gary Horndeski, M.D.

Gary M. Horndeski, MD
Texas Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 223 reviews

Breast augmentation and lift

Commonly,  for a circumareola lift and augmentation a permanent suture is placed around the border of the areola to minimize stretching of the areola.  While the suture may "break" months or years later, after about 6 months it should not impact the size of the areola.  As for the contraction of the areola, I can not say definitively.

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

Breast lift and Breast Augmentation

Thank you for your question.  When a periareolar mastopexy (mini lift of the breast) is done it is common to use a stich that is permannent to help keep the areolar size small.  It is not uncommon for that stitch to work its way out or break over time. It sounds as though the "pop" and bruising you experienced could be related to an untying of this stitch.  It does not sound harmful, but if it concerns you, return to your plastic surgeon for advice.

Mary Lee Peters, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 114 reviews

Suture has snapped after an around the nipple breast lift

When a donut or a Benelli (around the nipple) breast lift is done during augmentation, a blocking suture is placed around the areola to maintain the proper nipple diameter. The suture is permanent, though it can break as it has on one side in your photo. The nipple is now a bit larger and you can ignore it, replace the suture, or cut the one that remains.

Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 42 reviews

"Snapping" After a Peri-areolar Lift and Breast Augmentation

After having peri-areolar breast lift,  a suture is used placed like a "purse-string" to close the incision around the areolar borders.   Overtime, this suture can lose its strength and "snap".  The can result in widening of the areola and notable asymmetry if the same thing doesn't happen on the other side.   Other than the way it appears, there is no significant risk or down-side.  If you are concerned and wish it corrected, a revision can be performed and a new purse-string placed to improve the appearance and prevent further widening.   However, over time, there is a good chance it may happen again.

Adam Hamawy, MD
Princeton Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 51 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.