BREAST REDUCTION SURGERY
For most women, the size, shape, and framing of their breasts are integral aspects of their appearance. Large breasts may cause a range of physical, psychological, and social problems. From unwanted attention and comments that result in low self-esteem, to back and shoulder pain and difficulty finding well-fitted clothes, you may desire breast reduction for many reasons. As a qualified plastic surgeon I’m equipped to help you by addressing your specific needs with discretion and professionalism.
Breast Reduction: What Types of Surgery Exist?
There are many variations in breast reduction procedures. The technique used will vary according to:
- The Amount of Breast Tissue Removed
- The Shape of Skin Excision and Resulting Scars (Periareolar, Vertical, Short Inverted T, or Wise-Pattern Inverted T)
- Nipple and Areola Blood Supply (Inferior Pedicle, Superior Pedicle, Free Nipple Areola Grafting)
Several factors must be considered and discussed with you to ensure the best option is selected to meet your needs and expectations.
Am I Suitable for Breast Reduction Surgery?
Breast reduction is an excellent and safe option for achieving a smaller breast size and relieving the problems associated with large or heavy breasts.
The technique may be adjusted to control the size of the reduction. However, a specific final cup size can never be guaranteed.
When there is a history of breast cancer within your family, or you are older than 40, it is strongly recommended to have a mammogram (breast X-ray) before undergoing any breast surgery.
If you are concerned about the aesthetic and physical shape of your breasts and considering reduction surgery book a consultation to have an expert and honest opinion.
What Happens During the Consultation?
I will take a detailed history to explore your concerns and requirements.
I will examine your breasts for asymmetries, lumps, and abnormalities and take some measurements.
Then, I will discuss the suitability of the procedure with you, the reduction technique to be used, and the expected outcome. I will also go over any alternative options.
If you are a good candidate for surgery, I will explain the procedure in detail, as well as the recovery process, and possible risks and complications.
What Happens on the Day of Surgery?
The procedure will be a day case surgery, meaning you’ll be able to return home the same day. I will see you before surgery to draw some markings on your skin. Then, the anaesthetist will see you to begin the anaesthesia.
During the surgery, you will be given a dose of antibiotic to reduce the risk of infection. I will infiltrate the breasts with plenty of local anaesthetic to numb the skin and deep tissue.
When you wake up after surgery, you may feel some tightness. You are not expected to feel any significant pain thanks to the local anaesthetic. You will be given strong painkillers to take home, which should control all pain and discomfort.
What is the Recovery Process?
You will experience swelling, bruising, and discomfort for the first few days. The pain will be controlled by taking the painkillers on a regular basis.
It usually takes one to two weeks to return to day-to-day activities. It may take up to four weeks to return to full physical activities.
You should wear a well-fitted support bra and refrain from upper-body exercise, or sleeping on your chest, for 6 weeks after surgery.
What Follow-up Do I Get?
I will see you one week after surgery to check the condition of the wounds, 6-8 weeks later to assess the condition of the scars., and after 6 months to check the shape of the breasts.
Are There Any Alternatives?
That would depend on your aims and expectations, which are better measured and discussed during the consultation. For example, a mastopexy (breast uplift) alone might be the best option if the shape, rather than the size, of your breasts is your main concern. For small amounts of reduction, liposuction might be a reasonable alternative.