Cosmetic or Medical Surgical Procedure
Women can experience neck and back pain, skin irritation, a feeling of heaviness or fatigue. Aesthetic issues such as the breasts look to low or out of proportion to their body size. Breast reduction (reduction mammoplasty) removes excess skin, fat and breast tissue and lifts the breasts to look more youthful.
Types of Breast Reduction
Depending on technique it lasts two to four hours. It is performed under general anesthesia administered by an anesthesiologist at the surgical center or outpatient at the hospital.
What Is the Recovery Like?
You will initially have dressings and a surgical bra. Drains are used infrequently. Pain is moderate but reduced by nerve blocks and local anesthesia. Appropriate pain medicine is prescribed to keep you comfortable. Most of the sutures are self absorbing but a few are removed at two weeks. Strenuous arm and chest exercises are avoided for six weeks. Most women can return to office type work in one week.
Can I Breast Feed After Breast Reduction?
Ability is reduced in some women depending on which technique. Some women wait until after planned pregnancies to have the procedure.
Is There Scarring?
Other than liposuction only, the scars are more apparent than in breast augmentation. Meticulous surgical technique and postoperative creams help minimize the scars.
Will I Lose Nipple Sensation?
A small percentage of women have reduced sensation.
This is best for removal of only a small to moderate amount of breast tissue when there is minimal sagging. The advantages are smaller incisions and faster recovery.
Vertical Scar (Lollypop technique)
This uses an incision around the areola, usually making it smaller, and a second incision from the bottom of the areola to the crease at the bottom of the breast. This is shaped like a lollipop or tennis racket. Through these incisions excess breast tissue, fat and skin are removed and the remaining tissues are tightened and lifted. This is used to remove a moderate amount of breast tissue in a woman at or near her ideal weight. It avoids an incision in the crease below the breast
Standard Breast Reduction (Anchor technique)
This uses the incisions in the vertical technique and adds a variable length incision in the crease below the breast. A larger amount of tissue removal and lifting and tightening can be achieved.
Free Nipple Graft
This removes the nipple and areola as a skin graft and repositions it at the end of the procedure. This allows for more tissues to be safely removed in larger breasts. Disadvantages include inability to breastfeed, loss of nipple sensation, flattening of the nipple and irregular color. It is best for larger breasts and women with circulation problems from diabetes, smoking and vascular disease.