Tubular Breasts (Tuberous Breasts): Cause, Prevention, and Treatment | PreferredMD
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Tubular Breasts (Tuberous Breasts): Cause, Prevention, and Treatment

Condition • By Biraj Patel

Tubular breasts, also known as tuberous breasts or tubular breast deformity, is a relatively uncommon breast condition that can affect both men and women. Read on to explore what tubular breasts are, their features, causes, associated conditions, types, treatment options, risk factors, and preventive measures.

What are tubular breasts?

Tubular breasts is a congenital condition characterized by the underdevelopment of breast tissue. This results in breasts that have a narrow base, a constricted appearance, and a higher than usual inframammary fold. The condition may impact one or both breasts and can lead to various cosmetic and functional concerns.

Tubular breasts features

Tubular breasts exhibit distinctive features, which may include:

  • Constricted base: Tubular breasts often have a narrow base, causing the breasts to appear elongated or tube-like in shape.
  • Enlarged areolas: The areolas (pigmented areas surrounding the nipples) may appear larger and more puffy than normal.
  • Herniation of breast tissue: Breast tissue may herniate into the areolar area, causing a bulging or domed appearance.
  • Sparse breast tissue: Insufficient breast tissue can result in smaller breast size and less fullness.

Are tubular breasts always small?

While tubular breasts typically result in smaller breast size, this is not always the case. The size of tubular breasts can vary, and some individuals may have larger breasts with tubular characteristics.

What causes tubular breasts?

The exact cause of tubular breasts is not fully understood, but a few factors are believed to contribute to the condition.

  • Family history and genetic predisposition may play a role in the development of tubular breasts.
  • Hormonal fluctuations during puberty may disrupt normal breast development, leading to tubular breasts.
  • Connective tissue abnormalities may affect breast growth and development.

Tubular breasts and PCOS

Tubular breasts are not typically considered symptoms of Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS). However, hormonal imbalances associated with PCOS could potentially contribute to breast development issues.

Types of tubular breasts

Tubular breasts can manifest in various ways, leading to different types.

Type I

Mild tubular breasts with minimal constriction and slight areolar puffiness. In this type, the breasts may appear slightly narrow at the base, and the areolas could be slightly enlarged or puffy.

Type II

Moderate constriction, larger areolas, and more pronounced breast tissue herniation. Individuals with Type II tubular breasts may have more noticeable breast tissue herniation into the areolar area, resulting in a more pronounced bulging appearance.

Type III

Severe constriction, significant herniation, and substantial breast asymmetry. Type III tubular breasts are characterized by severe constriction of the base, significant bulging of breast tissue into the areolas, and notable breast asymmetry.

Early detection of tuberous breasts

While tubular breasts are primarily a congenital condition, early detection and intervention can help minimize the impact. Regular breast self-exams and clinical breast examinations can aid in identifying any developmental abnormalities.

Tubular breast correction

Addressing tubular breasts often involves a combination of surgical and non-surgical approaches to achieve the desired cosmetic and functional outcomes. Consulting with a board-certified plastic surgeon or a qualified medical professional is crucial to determine the most suitable treatment plan based on individual needs and preferences.

Tubular breast correction surgery

Tubular breast correction surgery, also known as tubular breast reconstruction, is the primary approach to treat tubular breasts. This surgical procedure aims to reshape and reconstruct the breasts to achieve a more natural and balanced appearance. The surgery typically involves the following components:

  • Breast augmentation: Breast implants are typically used to enhance breast volume and improve shape. The choice of implant type, size, and placement will be determined based on the patient's unique anatomy and desired outcome.
  • Areolar reduction: The size and shape of enlarged areolas can be addressed through areolar reduction surgery. This procedure helps create a more proportionate and aesthetically pleasing appearance.
  • Breast tissue redistribution: In cases where breast tissue herniation is prominent, the surgeon may reposition and redistribute the breast tissue to achieve a more natural breast contour.

Tubular breast augmentation

Tubular breast augmentation involves the placement of breast implants to enhance breast size and shape. This approach can be suitable for individuals with milder forms of tubular breasts who primarily desire increased volume.

Tubular breast lift

A tubular breast lift, or mastopexy, may be recommended to lift and reshape sagging breasts, improve nipple position, and achieve a more youthful appearance. This procedure is often combined with breast augmentation or performed as a standalone treatment.

Non-surgical options

While surgical intervention is the primary treatment for tubular breasts, non-surgical options such as fat grafting or injectable fillers may be considered in select cases to achieve subtle enhancements. These options are generally best suited for individuals with minimal tubular breast deformity.

Discuss tubular breast deformity with plastic surgeons in PreferredMD network

Tubular breasts, also known as tuberous breasts or tubular breast deformity, are a unique breast condition that can impact individuals' self-esteem and confidence. While the exact cause is not fully understood, various treatment options, including surgery, can help address the aesthetic and functional concerns associated with tubular breasts. 

Consultation with a qualified medical professional is essential for individuals seeking to understand and manage this condition.

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