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repriecring after a mastectomy/reconstruction

Discussion in 'Nipple Piercings' started by kinkykay, Aug 9, 2016.

  1. kinkykay

    kinkykay New Member

    Unfortunately, I'm going to undergo a double mastectomy with implant reconstruction.
    What I have is considered stage 0, which is not life threatening, and will likely never be, but because of my family and genetic background the doctors all recommend a complete double mastectomy. I'm too skinny for self-reconstruction, so will have to get implants.

    I really like my rings (12ga barbells) but I had to take them out well before the surgery.
    The doctor assured me that it should be possible to repierce the nipples after the surgery.
    My man, however, is concerned because the expected result of the surgery is to loose almost all feeling in the nipples and have a significantly reduced blood flow to the area. He thinks that healing might be a problem in such a situation.

    Does anyone have any experience with such a situation?
  2. kinkykay

    kinkykay New Member

    I should clarify that I'm not going to have any radiation treatments and that I never smoked.
  3. Rainbird

    Rainbird The Pierced Godmother Staff Member

    Hi Kay,
    I have some information for you which I hope you will find positive.
    There is quite a lot so bear with me but in these circumstances my feeling is that there is no such thing as too much information.
    I see that you have not had the surgery yet . I wish you every luck with it.
    Is the plan to salvage your own nipple and to replace it as part of the same surgery or to reconstruct your nipple as well using donor tissue?
    I'm sorry if that sounds rather a harsh question but it is relevant, as you will see from the information below.

    This is from Elayne Angel on Surgical Considerations. I appreciate that if you are keeping your nipples intact the last para may not apply to you, but I have chosen to give the full advice here in case there are others also needing this information.

    "If you have undergone surgery such as breast reduction or augmentation you still might be able to have your nipples pierced. However it is essential to wait until you are thoroughly healed from the operation. You might experience gratifying results from nipple piercing if you have diminished sensation from breast surgery. If you have implants use sound judgement when selecting a piercer and strictly adhere to all post piercing guidelines. The risks are more serious:an infection from the piercing can pass to your implant. This could require surgical intervention and may result in the loss of your augmentation.
    If you have undergone radical breast surgery and reconstruction with nipple replacement using non-areolar tissue,you are generally not a good candidate. Piercing might be possible if the donor tissue is a type that heals easily, such as labial skin.
    An expert piercer and your surgeon should both be consulted. Under these circumstances it is prudent to wait a year before considering nipple piercing.
    If you are scheduled to undergo surgery in which your nipples will be entirely or partially removed and re positioned it is advisable to leave in non metal jewelry alternative so the tissue can be reattached with the piercing at the appropriate angle. More than one piercee has awakened from surgery to find a previously horizontal piercing had become vertical. If necessary have your surgeon discuss the matter with a trusted piercer."

    Let me wish you the best of luck with your procedure and the healing process afterwards.
    If you have any other questions I will do my best to help but one thing regarding the choice of a piercer is that Elayne Angel does still pierce at various venues over the US, she is a Master Piercer and could not be more highly recommended. :)

  4. kinkykay

    kinkykay New Member

    Thank you for the information.
    I'm going to have what is called "nipple sparing mastectomy" where the nipple is untouched but all of the breast tissue is replaced with an implant. Some of the skin might also be removed, the surgeon said that she will only know during the operation.

    The old holes have healed by now so I'm not sure if the angle matters.

    I understand that I will probably want to wait a year before considering re-piercing.
    Is there a way to tell after the recovery from the operation is complete whether there is sufficient blood flow to the nipple to allow proper healing of the piercings?

  5. Rainbird

    Rainbird The Pierced Godmother Staff Member

    I would take the advice of your surgeon about the viability of having a piercing. I'm guessing you will see her for post op check ups.
    The only way I can think of to monitor the blood flow is how the nipple responds to stimulus.
    Once you are cleared by your surgeon for nipple play of course.
    There is the normal sexual stimulation that we know or there is also pumping, which actually draws extra blood into the nipple
    but I cannot stress too many times only with your medics approval.
    That would promote he blood flow to the nipple and a very gentle regime over perhaps another year might secure what you desire.

    Piercing through old scar tissue is tougher. have you discussed this with your piercer yet?
    They can advice about the angle but unless your nipples are perfectly symmetrical your surgeon hopefully
    will reattach them without rotation.
    I hope it helps and I send you all my best wishes for the surgery and recovery.
  6. kinkykay

    kinkykay New Member

    thank you
  7. kinkykay

    kinkykay New Member

    First an update is in order, I had my operation last year and it went very well, both with regards to the cancer and the aesthetic aspect of the reconstruction.

    The surgeon that performed the operation said that she does not think there is any issue with re-piercing at this point, as long as whoever performs the piercing is very careful not to damage the implants.

    Two questions:
    1. My original piercings were 14g later stretched to 12g. I like 12g, is there a reason not to go directly for 12g?
    2. I have very little feeling in my nipples, but it's starting to come back. Is there a reason to wait? my thoughts are that it's better not to feel it. what is your opinion?


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