Tuberous Breast Deformity is a type of congenital breast deformity which manifests for the first time in young girls when the breasts are fully developed by the age of 18-20years. It has been called by various other names like Tubular breasts, snoopy breasts, weird boobs, tube boobs etc.
The deformity can seriously affect these young women with body shame and self-hate.
I was moved by one such patient who walked into my clinic and described her suffering due to the tubular breasts, “I’d always believed that my breasts were weird but only realised they were so weird when I happened to glance at my cousins’ whilst she was changing in my room! She had a perfect pair, full, pear shaped and equal. My Breasts looked nothing like that. Mine were small, pointy, shaped like a tube and puffy like a snout at the end and on top of that they were unequal! Doctor can you fix them because my life depends on them!”
Tuberous Breast deformity which occurs due to abnormal or deficient proliferation of the breasts during puberty is not uncommon and is only correctable with plastic surgery procedures. Figure shows comparison of abnormal tuberous breast deformity with a normal breast.
It has been said that no other condition of the breast presents the same type of surgical challenge as the tubular breast deformity. All the deformity and deficiencies need redressal with a combination of plastic surgery techniques which can involve breast implant, breast expanders; reducing the size of nipple areola, breast lifting or reduction procedures etc. An experienced plastic surgeon will make a judicious customised choice to correct this deformity in single or sometimes 2-3 stages to reshape the breast in all its glory. The results are usually excellent and permanent in the hands of an experienced plastic surgeon.
Early correction of these breast and other such deformities like extra(accessory) armpit breasts, extra nipples, small or flat breasts or even very large breasts which are all a spectrum of congenital and developmental breast deformities give gratifying results and an increased awareness in these young women and their parents is essential to help them.