Total skin-sparing mastectomy without preservation of the nipple-areola complex

Aaron G. Margulies, Julio Hochberg, Julie Kepple, Ronda S. Henry-Tillman, Kent Westbrook, V. Suzanne Klimberg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

117 Scopus citations


Background: We hypothesized that total skin-sparing mastectomy (TSM) including where the skin overlying the nipple and areola is preserved would be oncologically safe and facilitate improved cosmetic reconstruction. Methods: A review (May 2003 through January 2005) was completed on all procedures that were performed through an inframammary incision or a previous scar with reconstruction using Botox, AlloDerm, and a subpectoral tissue implant. Results: Thirty-one patients had 50 TSMs. Twelve percent (6/50) of TSMs had the skin of the nipple and areola resected: 4 (14% of tumors) because of tumor involvement and 2 (4%) because of skin necrosis. Fourteen percent of patients had other complications: 4% (2/50) had infection and/or flap necrosis and 10% (5/50) had superficial epidermolysis requiring no intervention, for a total complication rate of 18%. Average cosmetic score was 8.5 (range 4 to 10). No recurrences are evident after mean follow-up of 7.9 ± 5.4 months. Conlusion: Our short-term experience suggests that TSM has an acceptable complication rate, is theoretically oncologically safe, and facilitates an improved cosmetic result.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)920-926
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal of Surgery
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • AlloDerm
  • Botox
  • Breast reconstruction
  • Nipple involvement
  • Nipple-areolar complex
  • Skin-sparing mastectomy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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