Over the course of his extensive career as a board certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Larry Schlesinger has helped thousands of women fall in love with their curves. Whether you have been uncomfortable with your breasts for years, noticed changes after pregnancy, or simply want to improve your breast shape, breast enhancement surgery can be a life-changing experience?especially for those patients who have agonized for years over the unusual shape of their breasts and didn’t know what the issue was. Dr. Schlesinger has corrected hundreds of tuberous breast deformities, giving patients more natural-looking breasts.
- What is the tuberous breast deformity?
- What causes tuberous breasts?
- Do I have tuberous breasts?
- How do you treat tuberous breasts?
- Who should perform tuberous breast surgery?
What is the tuberous breast deformity?
Colloquially known as “snoopy breasts” or “tubular breasts,” tuberous breasts are not just small, underdeveloped breasts. Rather, they have developed abnormally during puberty, resulting in three different types of constricted breast tissue?and the conical appearance can become a point of self-consciousness for those with this condition.
The tuberous breast deformity, known as parenchymal maldistribution, is a congenital abnormality that impedes full, normal breast development. There are three different distinct types of tuberous breasts that can occur in breasts of all sizes and present in varying degrees of severity. Either one or both breasts can be impacted, and breast asymmetry is a common symptom of the condition.
Tuberous breasts are typically widely separated, often presenting with what can be described as “pouty nipples” where the breast tissue herniates into the areola. Correctly identifying and diagnosing this condition is crucial, as standard breast augmentation techniques rarely allow normalization of the deformity.
What causes tuberous breasts?
The tubular breast deformity was first described in 1976, though we are still not sure exactly what causes this condition. Researchers have not yet confirmed a genetic link or statistically valid connection between tubular breasts and other breast problems, though research continues and observation of two male twins suggests a genetic component may yet be discovered.
Some research has suggested that an excess of collagen in the connective components in the breast can result in abnormal gland development that greatly impacts the shape of the breast.
Do I have tuberous breasts?
Women who have tuberous breasts may note one or more of the following visual symptoms:
- Elongated, conical or tubular shape
- Large or protruding nipples or “puffy” areolas (areolar herniation)
- Very narrow breast base
- High natural fold under the breast (inframammary fold)
- Deflated breast appearance
- Downward pointing nipples
- Widely separated breasts
In Dr. Schlesinger’s experience, the tuberous breast deformity is much more common than most assume; many patients think they simply have small breasts?and many surgeons will move forward with a standard breast augmentation. However, diagnosing the condition and adapting treatment accordingly is paramount to achieving an optimal result.
That’s why the best way to determine if you have tuberous breasts is to consult with a plastic surgeon who has specialized in treating this condition.
How do you treat tuberous breasts?
While some may think a traditional breast augmentation can correct tuberous breasts, it is not that simple. Remember, the tuberous breast deformity results from constriction of breast tissue?and this constriction must be released before an implant can be placed. Depending on the severity of the deformity, Dr. Schlesinger will use a number of advanced surgical techniques to reshape and fill out the breasts while creating a more natural breast mound. This may include tissue expansion, fibrous tissue release, or excision of excess areolar skin in addition to breast implant placement.
Tubular breasts can range in severity from minor constriction with a slightly enlarged areola and minimal conical shape to severe constriction with extremely herniated areolas, deficiency in breast tissue, and lack of breast fold?and the right treatment for you will depend on your unique needs and anatomy.
During your consultation, Dr. Schlesinger will examine your breasts to determine the best course of action for helping correct your tuberous breast deformity and create a symmetrical, shapely breast mound.
Correcting mild tuberous breast deformity
For patients with a mild case of tuberous breast deformity, Dr. Schlesinger may be able to achieve great results by releasing the constricted tissue and placing breast implants alone. In most cases, some asymmetry is present, so Dr. Schlesinger will carefully choose the right implant style and size to ensure a more even result.
In some mild cases, breast lifting techniques can be used to re-anchor the breast to a more natural position and improve breast shape. However, Dr. Schlesinger has found that most patients with tuberous breast deformity do not have enough natural breast tissue for this to create an optimal result.
Correcting moderate to severe tuberous breast deformity
In cases of more severe tuberous breast deformity, it is highly likely that a reduction and/or repositioning of the nipple-areolar complex will be needed to provide a natural, beautiful outcome. While some women find that the largeness of the areola is less problematic once breast size has increased, those with extremely herniated areolas benefit from areola reduction.
Who should perform tuberous breast surgery?
Because the tuberous breast deformity is often misdiagnosed?and thus not treated correctly?it’s crucial to work with a board certified plastic surgeon who has years of experience diagnosing and correcting tuberous breasts. When looking for a surgeon, consider the following:
- Is the surgeon certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery?
- Does the surgeon have positive reviews related to tuberous breast correction?
- Do the surgeon’s before and after photos reflect consistent, aesthetically pleasing results?
- How many tuberous breast correction procedures has the surgeon performed?
- What is the surgeon’s plan of action? Will he or she be employing advanced techniques? Or do they only recommend a breast augmentation?
Properly correcting the tuberous breast deformity is paramount to achieving a beautiful, natural-looking outcome. Patients who have been misdiagnosed or treated improperly may experience noticeable asymmetry, continued constriction of the breast mound around breast implants, downward-facing nipples, and “double bubble,” a complication that results in a breast implant dropping below and behind the natural inframammary crease.
Your Honolulu tuberous breast surgery
Dr. Schlesinger uses a variety of techniques and a diverse range of breast implant sizes and styles to customize your surgical experience to create the attractive, natural breasts for each patient. If you would like to learn more about this procedure or schedule a consultation to explore your options, please contact us today to get started!