Breast reduction surgery is one of the most common requests for plastic surgery procedures. Safe for woman of all ages, although it is typically not done on those under the age 18 since the breasts are most likely still growing. One of the known risks of this procedure is the inability to breastfeed, so this should be considered for those in their childbearing years. The goal of breast reduction is not only to ease certain symptoms such as back and neck pain but also to accomplish the desired size and look of the breasts.
How big is too big?
There is no guideline on how big is too big. However when thinking in terms of insurance, it is typically required that the woman display symptoms of Macromastia (the medical term for large breasts). Symptoms can include neck, back, and shoulder pain, trouble sleeping, etc.
About the procedure
Dr. Griner will perform your breast reduction surgery using general anesthesia. He’ll make an incision around the areola which extends downward along the fold beneath your breast. The excess skin and fatty tissue will then be removed.
During the procedure, your nipple and areola will be re-positioned to provide a more youthful result. In most cases, this is done without completely separating the nipple from the milk ducts however in some rare circumstances the nipple has to be completely separated from the ducts. In these cases, it’s possible that you might experience a loss of nipple/areolar sensation. It’s also likely that you will be unable to breast feed in the future.
WHAT TO EXPECT
Because surgery can possibly alter your mammogram it’s a good idea and often required by the doctor to get a mamogram prior to your surgery. You will be provided a set of pre-operative instructions describing how you should prepare for surgery. It’s possible in rare situations that a blood transfusion is necessary so it may be advised to donate a unit of your own blood several weeks prior to surgery. This is typically only recommended for patients with very large breasts.
It’s important to arrange for a responsible adult to be available to take you home after the surgery and stay with you the first night.
Day of Surgery
You’ll meet with Dr. Griner and the anesthesiologist prior to surgery. This is a good chance for any last minute questions. The actual surgery typically takes less than 3 hours. Afterwards, you’ll be moved into your recovery room which will typically last 1 to 1 1/2 hours before you’ll be discharged.
After surgery, you’ll need to restrict certain activities that involve heavy lifting or vigorous arm movements for up to 4 weeks. Most women return to work approximately 10 – 14 days after surgery. You’ll be provided with a detailed list of activities to avoid and things to be aware of post-surgery.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
WHO ARE CANDIDATES FOR BREAST REDUCTION SURGERY?
It’s a common belief that only women with very large breasts should consider getting a breast reduction surgery. However, any woman in good physical and emotional health, whose breasts are out of proportion to the rest of her body frame are also good candidates for a breast reduction procedure.
WHAT CONDITIONS ARE CORRECTED WITH A BREAST REDUCTION SURGERY?
Aside from achieving a cosmetic look, you might be after, breast reduction surgery can also help with irritating issues most women with overly large breasts deal like with, skin irritation, back pain, and neck pain.
WHAT SHOULD I EXPECT DURING MY RECOVERY FROM A BREAST REDUCTION PROCEDURE?
In most cases, women may feel uncomfortable and sore after the surgery, as well as experience swelling of the breasts. The recovery period varies from case to case, depending on the level of correction needed and the surgical method used in the breast reduction procedure. After surgery, you’ll need to restrict certain activities that involve heavy lifting or vigorous arm movements for up to 4 weeks. Most women return to work approximately 10 – 14 days after surgery.
ARE BREAST REDUCTION RESULTS PERMANENT?
Breast reduction is a permanent procedure, however, your breasts will still be affected by factors such as aging and gravity over time.