What is a Breast Reduction?
A breast reduction, also referred to as reduction mammaplasty, is a surgery done to decrease your breast size and weight. This surgery can be considered both cosmetic and reconstructive. Many women with very large and heavy breasts suffer from neck pain, shoulder pain, tension headaches, rashes and infections under their breasts. Very large breasts may also affect self-confidence, possibly starting from puberty and having long-lasting effects on self-confidence. Some women are very self-conscious about the size of their breasts and are restricted from wearing certain clothing as well as exercises. Breast reduction can be a life-changing surgery. It dramatically improves quality of life and appearance.
Am I A Candidate For Breast Reduction?
Women with large breasts often suffer from medical problems, low self-esteem, and/or physical discomfort. If you are pregnant or breastfeeding you are not a candidate for breast reduction surgery. Reduction mammaplasty, usually using liposuction, is also used on men whose breasts are enlarged. This is known as Gynecomastia Surgery.
Breast Reduction Surgery
Breast Reduction surgery is performed under general anesthesia and takes between 2 to 5 hours to perform. There are three different incisions techniques that are often used and vary based on the individual patient. Dr. Fisher will review these options with you during your consultation.
- Two rings, one larger than the other, around the areola
- A keyhole shape, around the areola and down to the breast crease
- An anchor shape, beginning in the breast crease and extending up to and around the areola
Liposuction may also be used to reduce the breast size. Dr. Fisher will evaluate your fatty tissue and glandular tissue to see if this is an option, as you must have more fatty tissue for Liposuction to be effective. This technique leaves little-to-no scarring but is not an option for everyone.
Breast Reduction with Implants
A breast reduction may be desired if a patient once had breast augmentation surgery and now wants the implants removed or changed for a smaller size. Dr. Fisher can discuss your options during your consultation and choose the best implant size for your what your desire.
Breast Reduction and Lift
A breast lift is also commonly combined with reduction mammaplasty and may include a possible skin graft. If you are choosing to have implants removed, a breast lift in combination with the reduction will give you the best post-op results without the need for additional surgery later on.
Breast Reduction Before and After
Recovery After Reduction Mammaplasty
Soreness, swelling and bruising are common side effects after breast reduction surgery. After 2 days, the bandages are removed and replaced with a surgical bra. Light activity may be resumed 1 to 2 weeks after surgery. After 2 to 3 weeks, stitches are removed and you may return to work and other regular activity, however, exercise and strenuous activity should be avoided for at least 4 weeks.
You will notice results immediately after surgery and improved results after the swelling and bruising subside. As with all surgery, there will be scarring which will fade over time. The benefits of breast reduction scars are that they usually cannot be seen when wearing a bathing suit or low-cut clothing.
Are There Any Risks To Breast Reduction Surgery?
As with all surgery, there are certain risks associated breast reduction. These risks include:
- Loss of sensation in the nipple
- Undesirable Scarring
- Asymmetry between the breasts
- Inability to breast-feed
- Partial or total loss of areola and nipple
It is important to remember that although the results are long-lasting, the breasts are still subject to the effects of aging.
Request a Consultation
Schedule a Consultation
If you are interested in finding out more about breast reduction surgery, contact our office located in Palo Alto, CA at 650.321.2629. Our practice serves the San Francisco Bay Area.