So, think of a breast reduction as a breast lift in which your breasts are also made smaller.
During your breast surgery, your nipples will be moved to a higher position on your breasts. This is usually accomplished WITHOUT removing your nipples and putting them back on. The technique plastic surgeons use to accomplish this is called transposition, in which the nipple stays fully attached to the breast - only the surrounding skin is moved. Because the nipple preserves its attachment, most women retain (or improve) nipple sensation, the ability to attain an erect nipple, and the ability to breast feed.
Women who have such markedly large breasts that attempted preservation of the nipple can threaten the entire operation may be advised to have a free-nipple breast reduction. In this operation, the nipple IS actually removed at the beginning of the operation and placed on at the end of the operation as a graft. Nipple sensation, appearance, and function (breast feeding) will be forever altered, but this is sometimes the best option for women whose breasts are so large that other operations would pose too great of a risk. Once again, this technique of free-nipple grafting is not nearly as common as the techniques which involve preservation of the nipple.
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