Debora Ma, MD - Blue Aspen Plastic Surgery

Breast Reduction

Overly large breasts are a commonly overlooked cause of chronic neck and upper back pain. Typically women with excessively large breasts will experience pain at the base of the neck and between the shoulder blades. The pain is daily and worse at the end of the day. Shoulder grooving from bra straps, skin irritation beneath the breasts, restricted physical activity and difficulty finding clothing are some of the discomforts caused by breasts that are too large.

Breast reduction surgery can effectively alleviate all these problems by removing the excess breast tissue and creating a lifted, smaller breast that is proportionate to your figure. The new breast is smaller, comfortable, portable as well as being lifted and aesthetically shaped. Inherent in a breast reduction is a breast lift.

Women who undergo a breast reduction are extremely satisfied with their results. Their chronic back pain is resolved and they experience much more physical freedom. They are able to lead active healthy lives, and are no longer limited in the type of clothing they can wear. Many women wish they had had the procedure done years ago.Typically women are so pleased with the results, that they wish they had had the procedure done years ago. Overall, women feel better, have more energy and able to move more comfortably. There have even been reports of sleep apnea resolving after breast reduction.

Breast reduction surgery may be covered by your insurance company. We will make every attempt to obtain insurance approval for your breast reduction. For minor reductions, or if your insurance approval is not obtained, breast reduction surgery is available as a cosmetic (self-pay) procedure.

The results of breast reduction surgery can be compromised with pregnancy and weight fluctuations. For this reason, it is advisable to seek a breast reduction once your breasts are fully developed, or stable after pregnancy.

The breast reduction procedure

Breast reduction is done as an outpatient procedure in a surgicenter. During surgery, the excess breast tissue and skin are removed and the breast is reduced to a size that is befitting your body. The breasts are lifted so that they are positioned higher on the chest wall, eliminating all breast droop.

Depending on the amount of tissue to be removed, there are varying types of incisions that will be made. Possible incision types include a "lollipop" incision around the areola and down from the areola to the breast crease, or additionally an incision underneath the breast along the crease. Although the scars may be permanent, they commonly fade with time. The incisions are typically placed discretely so they are not visible under clothing or bathing suits. In rare instances of extremely droopy breasts, the nipple and areola may need to be removed and repositioned during surgery.

The acute recovery is typically about 2-3 weeks. During this recovery period, it is recommended that you do not participate in any activity that increases your heart rate or blood pressure. It is also important that the incisions are protected against mechanical strain. For 6-8 weeks after surgery, it is advisable to continue to guard against any mechanical pulling on the incisions. Depending on the physical demands of your job, it may be necessary to take 2-6 weeks off from work.

The incisions are large and it is not uncommon for there to be small areas along the incision that need topical care during the healing period. These restrictions will help minimize the chance of post-operative complications.

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