Not all women desire overly large and full breasts. In fact, for some women, enlarged breasts are more of a burden than an asset. Breasts that are disproportionate to the rest of the body can be heavy to move around, and cause embarrassment or emotional discomfort due to unwanted attention or clothes not fitting properly. If you are feeling physical and/or emotional distress due to the size of your overly large breasts, it may be time to consider breast reduction surgery. Breast reduction resizes the breasts and areola-nipple complex to create a smaller bust that is more proportionate with the rest of the body.
Let True Beauty San Diego Aesthetic Surgery & Medicine help you live confidently with lighter and proportionately sized breasts. Continue reading to learn about how breast reduction can relieve you of the physical and emotional weight that comes with enlarged breasts.
The Benefits of Breast Reduction
Breast reduction is one of the most gratifying plastic surgery procedures as the benefits can be life changing. Chronic back, neck and shoulder pain substantially decreases as the breasts are no longer too heavy to hold up. Skin chafing and shoulder grooves caused by bra straps digging into the skin are no longer an issue. Mobility is easier and exercise becomes more comfortable and enjoyable.
Breast reduction also relieves emotional discomfort caused by enlarged breasts. With a more proportionate breast size and balanced figure, your self-confidence will soar. You can feel confident wearing flattering clothing and meeting others, without worrying about garnering unwanted attention because of the size of your breasts.
Breast reduction is performed as an outpatient procedure under general anesthesia to ensure your comfort at all times. In standard breast reduction, the surgical incisions are made around the edge of the areola and extending vertically down the front of the breast. The size of the incisions depends on the desired amount of reduction. Excess fat, tissue and skin are removed from the breast to achieve the desired size and shape. If there is a significant degree of sagging (ptosis), we can perform a lift to elevate your smaller, more proportionate breasts higher on the chest. If necessary, the areola-nipple complex will be resized and shifted higher on the breast mound. Incisions are closed with sutures and a compression garment is placed over the breasts to support the tissues as they heal. Over time, the resulting scars will heal and can be concealed with most bras and bathing suit tops.
Breast Reduction Recovery
Recovery time from breast reduction varies from patient to patient, but most require one to two weeks off from their normal routines (i.e., work, bending, lifting, exercise). Our team will monitor your healing progress, meet with you for follow-up appointments and advise you on when to resume your regular activities.
Brian Reagan, MD, FACS
Dr. Brian Reagan is a board-certified plastic surgeon and founder of True Beauty San Diego Aesthetic Surgery & Medicine. Dr. Reagan is renowned for his surgical skills and commitment to patient satisfaction. Dr. Reagan has been featured on local media outlets, including ABC 10, and recognized as one of the “Best Plastic Surgeons in San Diego” by San Diego Magazine, and “Best Plastic Surgeons in La Jolla” by La Jolla Light Newspaper.
Breast Reduction FAQs
When will the final breast reduction results become visible?
You may notice your breasts are smaller immediately after breast reduction surgery. However, it make take up to a year for your breasts to stabilize, residual swelling to subside and the final results to become visible.
How long do breast reduction results last?
The results of breast reduction can last many years. Be advised that weight fluctuations after breast reduction can alter the size, shape and position of the breasts. The best way to prolong your results is to follow a healthy lifestyle (e.g., diet and exercise) and maintain a stable weight.
Is breast reduction scarring visible?
Breast reduction does leave some scarring. However, a highly trained and skilled plastic surgeon like Dr. Reagan knows how to create and place incisions to produce the least amount of visible scarring. In addition, your scars will fade over time. Our team will provide you with a list of instructions on how to take care of your post-op scars so they can heal and fade quickly and properly.
When can I start exercising after breast reduction surgery?
Exercising and other activities that raise the heart rate will be off limits for at least two weeks after surgery. However, we recommend you take short, leisurely walks as soon as you feel ready, as this encourages good circulation. Light-impact exercises may be safe to resume approximately four weeks after surgery, while high-impact exercises may require a six- to eight-week wait period. Ultimately, you should not resume exercise until our doctor clears you to do so. Our team will provide you with guidelines on how to gradually resume your normal exercise routine.
What are the potential side effects and risks associated with breast reduction surgery?
Normal and temporary side effects of breast reduction include swelling, bruising, soreness and tenderness. Potential risks and complications include infection, bleeding, asymmetry, skin discoloration and unfavorable scarring. The True Beauty team will review all possible risks and complications with you prior to surgery.
Do I need a breast lift, too?
Many women who undergo breast reduction also have a breast lift. Breast lift raises the breast mound higher on the chest wall for a more youthful and perkier appearance. The nipple is also relocated to a higher and normal position on the breast mound. True Beauty can discuss the possibility of incorporating a lift in your breast reduction surgery during the pre-op consultation phase.
How much does breast reduction cost?
The final cost of breast reduction surgery varies based on the complexity of the procedure, including whether a breast lift is included, as well as your anatomical needs and cosmetic objectives. We can provide you with a cost estimate upon meeting with you for a consultation.
Is breast reduction covered by health insurance?
Your insurance may cover a portion or all of the cost of breast reduction if the procedure is deemed medically necessary. Breast reduction is deemed a medical necessity if it’s performed to reduce chronic back pain, neck pain and other health-related problems due to heavy, overly large breasts. Our True Beauty team can assist you in filing the necessary claims to your insurance company.
Can breast reduction reshape the breast while decreasing size?
Yes, in addition to reducing volume, breast reduction surgery can sculpt the breasts and make them more symmetrical for a more appealing shape.
The procedure can also adjust the nipple, compress the size of the areola and create a perkier, more elegant profile. If there is sagging, Dr. Reagan can also lift each breast to renew the natural contour.
I’m not sure which cup size is optimal for me — how do I decide?
Dr. Reagan works hard to match results with expectations, and that is why it is so important to share your vision and hopes with him. During your personal consultation, he will be happy to answer every question and provide additional resources that will help you make your decision.
The best choice is usually a size that dovetails with your body frame. It is best to avoid choosing a size that you may later feel is too small.
Is breast reduction the same as breast revision?
Breast revision surgery usually involves removal of breast implants, so in that way it does reduce size. Women choose the procedure for a variety of reasons, ranging from aesthetic to medical:
Sometimes it is a matter of preference: a patient simply does not like the look or feel of implants, or the goals she was hoping to achieve were not met.
Sometimes patients have health conditions, such as autoimmune diseases, that may be aggravated by the presence of implants.
In other cases, the initial surgery may have gone wrong, or there were side effects that were not sufficiently anticipated by the surgeon. For example, implants may have lost integrity, drifted or even damaged surrounding tissue.
Will I experience changes with breastfeeding and nipple sensation?
Some patients do find it harder to breastfeed after breast reduction surgery. Dr. Reagan takes care to preserve breast gland function, to the fullest extent possible.
Although it is very uncommon, some patients can lose nipple sensation. As part of your surgery, the nipple typically will be reduced in size to match the size of the smaller breasts.
Learn More about Breast Reduction
True Beauty is committed to making your breast enhancement journey safe, comfortable and successful. To learn more about breast lift, schedule an in-office consultation. Contact us by calling (858) 454-SKIN (7546) or sending us an email today.