Sometimes surgeons have difficulty preserving blood supply to the nipple during oncoplastic surgery. In these cases, a "free nipple graft" is the only way the nipple may be preserved. This involves removing the nipple and replacing it after the breast reduction or lift is complete. The disadvantages of this part of the procedure include the resulting nipple numbness and inability to lactate, or breastfeed a baby. This technique is used only as a last resort if your surgeon feels that the nipple may not be saved otherwise. You should talk to your surgeon about this prior to the procedure.