For patients with excessive breast size, Breast Reduction Surgery can help relieve the physical symptoms caused by the size and weight of your breasts. Breast reduction surgery will change both the size and position of your breasts. After surgery, your breasts will be in better proportion to the rest of your body.
Who is a candidate for surgery?
If you experience one (or more) of the following complaints, you may be a good candidate for surgery:
Breast size out of proportion to your body
Pain due to your breast size, usually involving your back, neck, and/or your shoulders
Shoulder grooving from your brassiere straps
Skin irritation beneath your breasts
Restrictions in activity due to your breast size
Dissatisfaction and self-consciousness about your breast size
Pain from dense, fibrous breast (even if not extremely large breasted)
Breast size varies significantly from side to side
During your free consultation, your plastic surgeon will discuss your breast concerns, including any history of previous breast surgery. He will examine you, often taking measurements and photographs for your medical record. Since your weight can affect breast size, if you plan to lose a large amount of weight, be sure to discuss your plans with your surgeon.
In addition to concerns about your breasts, be prepared to discuss your medical history, both for medical treatments and any surgeries you may have had. Bring a list of your current medications. Any allergies, particularly to medications, can be important to your care.
Typically, incisions are made from your nipple down to your chest wall, and side to side under your breast. Excess breast tissue and skin is removed, with the remaining breast tissue moved to its new position, and the skin closed around your new breast mound.
Images provided by Amreican Society of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeons.
Pregnancy, childbirth, and nursing can have unpredictable effects on your breasts. The decision to have surgery before or after you have children is a very personal decision. The ability to nurse after reduction surgery is unpredictable. If you nurse after surgery, you will likely experience areas of temporary engorgement. If children are a part of your future plans, be sure to discuss your concerns with your plastic surgeon.
Risks associated with breast surgery are the same as any other surgery. Common risks include bleeding, infection, scarring, change in sensation, and loss of tissue. Temporary changes in sensation are common. Changes that are present one year after surgery will be permanent. Although complications are uncommon, you should share any concerns with your surgeon.
Unless you have a job that requires heavy lifting, you can expect to return to work within 7-10 days of surgery. Return to "normal" activity requires 4-6 weeks. Complete healing requires up to one year after surgery. The appearance of your breasts will change with time. Three months or longer may be needed to achieve a more natural "look & feel" for you chest.
Does insurance cover the costs of surgery?
While most insurance companies provide coverage, many factors can influence your eligibility. A letter of predetermination is usually sent to your insurance company. Some companies require a photo as part of their determination process. **Insurance check.