Breast Reduction (Reduction Mammoplasty)

Breast Reduction

Why have Breast Reduction (Reduction Mammoplasty)? Overly large breasts can cause some women to have both health and self-image issues, as they also are associated with significant droopiness. The excess weight of the breast tissue can impair your ability to lead an active life and cause you to experience physical pain and discomfort.

Breast reduction surgery has a very high level of patient satisfaction, not least because large and heavy breasts can be painful to live with, causing shoulder and back pain, and limit the ability to wear fashionable clothing and engage in sports. The breast reduction procedure removes fat, glandular tissue and skin to create smaller, lighter, firmer and better shaped lifted breasts. It can also reduce the size of the areola, the darker skin surrounding the nipple. The goal is beautiful breasts that are in proportion to the rest of your body.

Breast Reduction Consultation: What to Expect

The success and safety of your breast surgery procedure depends very much on a candid discussion of your goals during your consultation. Only with clear communication and careful planning will your surgeon be able to meet your particular aims and desires.

You will be asked some questions about your health, desires and lifestyle.

Be prepared to discuss:

  • Why you want the surgery, your expectations and desired outcomes
  • Medical conditions, drug allergies and medical treatments
  • Use of current medications, alcohol, tobacco and drugs
  • Previous surgeries
  • Any family history of breast cancer and results of any mammograms

Your consultant will also:

  • Evaluate your general health status and any pre-existing health conditions or risks factors
  • Examine your breasts, take detailed measurements of their shape and size, skin quality, and placement of your nipples
  • Take photographs for your medical records
  • Discuss your options and recommend a course of action.
  • Discuss any likely outcomes of breast reduction surgery, any risks or potential complications and what to expect during your recovery.
  • Discuss the use of anaesthesia during your surgery

Reduction Procedure

Breast reduction is performed through incisions on your breasts with surgical removal of excess fat, glandular tissue and skin. In some cases, excess fat is removed through liposuction in conjunction with the excision techniques described below.

The techniques used to reduce the size of your breasts will be determined by your individual condition, body composition, the amount of breast reduction desired, your personal preferences and the surgeon’s advice.

The incision options include:

  • A circular pattern around the areola
  • A keyhole or racket-shaped pattern with an incision around the areola and vertically down the breast crease
  • An inverted T or anchor shaped pattern
  • After the incision is made the nipple is repositioned and, if necessary, the areola is reduced by excising skin at the perimeter. The underlying breast tissue is reduced, lifted and shaped.
  • The incisions are brought together to reshape your new breast. The Sutures are layered deep in the breast tissue to create and support your breasts.

What to Expect from the Surgery

Most patients are pleased with the outcome and find they have smaller, lighter, and firmer breasts. The results of your breast surgery will be long lasting. And your new breast size should help relieve you from the pain and physical discomfort/limitations you were experiencing before the surgery.

You will have a better-proportioned figure most likely enhancing your self-image and confidence. However, over time your breasts can change due to age, weight fluctuations, hormonal factors and gravity.

To achieve smaller attractive breasts, the breast reduction operation does leave scars, around the nipple and under the breast. These are not visible even when wearing a bikini or evening dress and fade within 18 months (although never entirely invisible).

The breast reduction operation is performed under a general anaesthetic, usually, takes about 2 to 3 hours depending on each patient and the extent of surgery and usually only requires an overnight stay in the hospital.

Further Reading:

Breast Uplift (Mastopexy)

British Association of Plastic Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons

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