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Breast Reduction Surgery (Reduction Mammoplasty)

Women who choose to have breast reduction surgery usually have extremely large breasts. Often the size of their breasts is out of proportion to the rest of their body. This unbalance can result in back and spinal issues, poor posture, poor body image and often pain.

Breast reduction surgery is a procedure whereby the excess fat, glandular tissue and skin is removed, resulting in smaller and firmer breasts, that are naturally supported by the body. In addition, the procedure helps ensures that the individual has a more symmetrical breast. The outcome of breast reduction surgery is an appropriate and desirable size, shape and symmetry of the breasts. If you want to know about breast reduction cost, just go to the FAQ section where you will find some information about breast reduction cost.

Prior to having the surgery you will be shown photos, showing all of the shapes and sizes of breasts imaginable. You will then go through a consultation with the plastic surgeon of your choice and you can then choose which shape and size is best suited to your body. This is not a decision to be made lightly as these are the breasts you will have ideally for a long time, so it is important to familiarize yourself with what is possible and appropriate for you.

The breast reduction surgery procedure varies with each individual plastic surgeon. Some will make an incision around the nipple and areola. Usually, plastic surgeons follow a specific pattern when removing the fat, skin and glandular tissue of the breast. Depending on the size of the original breast, the surgeon may need to move or reposition the nipple a little higher or lower, depending on the new position of the breasts. If there is a large amount of fatty tissue, the surgeon may decide that it is necessary to remove this excess fat using liposuction, which is a small vacuum procedure. If there is little fatty tissue, the surgeon may decide to remove this with a scalpel.

Once the procedure is complete, the surgeon may feel that it is necessary to insert a small plastic tube into one or both of the breasts. This is placed in order to drain any excess fluid buildup around and inside the breasts. This small tube is used to prevent any complications during the healing process and once the breasts are complication free, the tube will be removed. Some plastic surgeons choose not to use drains.

Some surgeons use a low dose of local anaesthetic so that you do not feel the removal of the tube, however, some do not. These tubes do not require surgery or any invasive procedure to be removed and are usually taken away several days after the surgery, in an outpatient appointment in the plastic surgery clinic. Once the tubes have been removed, these may require a few tiny stitches, which can be done during your appointment. These stitches are usually dissolvable, so you will not have to worry about having them removed.

It is completely normal to have minor scarring after breast reduction surgery however; it usually depends on how different the new breasts are in relation to the position and shape of the your breasts before the surgery. The normal places to find scarring is around the nipple, areola, along the crease of the breast and down the crease of the breast. Follow the instructions given to you by the surgeon and be patient, the scars are usually minimal and the results worth it.

Risks and Complications

Generally, modern day surgery is considered safe.

There are a number of potential complications and risks associated with a breast reduction procedure. These complications and risks can be both physical and mental and need to be considered prior to having the surgery. It is completely normal to be advised about the ‘general anesthetic,’ as this is the law. There are issues that can arise, when under a general anesthetic, these include; suppressed breathing, heart failure and even death. Approximately one-third of patients who receive an anaesthetic during surgery will experience “anaesthesia sickness” or post-operative nausea and vomiting (POVN).

There are also complications and risks that can arise with the procedure itself these include infection, bleeding, bruising, potential loss of feeling all over the breast and the nipple.

Having a breast reduction procedure can also reduce the chance of being able to breast feed, limit movement of your shoulder, neck and arms. Delayed wound healing is another risk and complication and can result in keloid scarring which is where the scar becomes red and raised. This kind of scarring is not aesthetically pleasing and can result in a further surgery to remove the scaring. In addition, if the blood does not manage to get around certain parts of the breast, once the breast has been reduced, this could result in parts of the breasts dying and being lost. You will need to discuss these issues with your surgeon.

There are some factors which can increase the risk of experiencing these complications and these include if the patient smokes, is obese, has poor nutrition and if the individual has undergone any surgery or radiation in the breast area prior to the breast reduction.

Q. Does my insurance cover breast reduction cost of having a breast reduction?

A. If you are going for Breast Reduction surgery, consult your insurance company as most insurance companies will pay your breast reduction cost if you can prove that it is affecting you both physically and mentally.

Q. How long will I have to stay in hospital after the surgery?

A. The normal stay is around 4 days, however if there are any complications, this may result in your hospital stay being increased.

Q. How long does the surgery take?

A. Normally, the surgery will take approximately 2 to 4 hours.

Q. Will I be in pain after the procedure?

A. Normally, individuals will experience discomfort after undergoing this procedure, however the surgeon will prescribe pain relief for you to take home.

Q. How long after the surgery will I need to have my stitches out?

A. Normally, the stitches from your breast reduction procedure will be taken approximately 7 to 10 days after the surgery.

Angela's Story The ins and outs of Angela’s Breast Reduction and Tummy Tuck with Dr Justin Perron, Brisbane November 4, 2016 - Trish Hammond: Great, well I’m here today with Angela, who’s in Brisbane. Angela just recently had a tummy tuck, which is abdominoplasty, and a breast reduction with Dr. Justin Perron up in Brisbane who operated from the Mater Hospital. We’re going to have a bit of a chat about it today. Thanks Angela, thanks for taking the time. Angela: No worries at all. Thank you. Trish Hammond: Lovely. Angie, tell us, first of all, why did you decide to have these 2 procedures done? What was it that made you think it was time? Angela: I’m a 40-year-old mum of twin boys that are now 19. After having the twins, I carried them at roughly … I was about 50 kilos at the time when I was carrying boys. Basically, they just wrecked my abdomen. I procrastinated for 19 years and decided that I would finally do something about it. It’s not great when you’re getting told that your boys are 19, and are you still pregnant? That’s not a great thing to be getting every day, so my abdomen was split roughly 10 to 11 centimetres and brought up underneath my solar plexus. Although everyone normally gets a little […]
Breast Augmentation, Pregnancy and Breastfeeding Breast Augmentation, Pregnancy and Breastfeeding July 11, 2016 - With more women than ever undergoing breast augmentations and having breast implants; and the age of women undergoing such surgery including those of a much younger age, a frequent concern is whether or not you will be able to breastfeed after breast surgery, and what your implants and breasts might look like after breastfeeding if you’ve had an augmentation. Dr Craig Rubinstein from the Cosmetic Surgery for Women helps us to know what to be aware of when breastfeeding with implants. If you are young and considering a breast augmentation, breast reduction or implants, and want to have children in the future, you should definitely inform your surgeon of your desire to breastfeed. You’ll want to thoroughly discuss the various options in order to reduce the chances of your ability to breastfeed being compromised. Dr Rubinstein says, “Even without breast surgery, some women are simply unable to breastfeed. It is important to recognise that there’s no guarantee for breastfeeding capacity, but a great Surgeon will take every surgical precaution to not significantly impact the area of the breasts that are relevant to breastfeeding.” You can find various sources of information on the internet advising that breast augmentations and implants will […]
Karen's Real Story Are multiple procedures for you? Check out Karen’s real story April 27, 2016 - I want to introduce another woman who has overcome many obstacles in life, and come out the other end intact, happy, and inspiring! I met Karen online one of our closed social media groups when I was having my own abdominoplasty surgery recently. She was a couple of weeks post-op; I was reaching out and sharing my surgery and experiences and so was she – we connected immediately. You know what it’s like – when you meet someone and they just ‘fit’, they feel like they’re part of your tribe. You’ve shared a similar journey. So let me share Karen’s story. At 125kg and at 36yrs old, Karen tried to lose weight with diet, exercise and obsessive compulsive bingeing (mmmmm I feel like I’m looking in a mirror here!). In 2010 she had a lapband, however because it was making her life a misery by not being able to eat, she had it removed in November 2013. She then had a gastric sleeve in March 2014. Over 6 years Karen lost about 35kgs (22kgs lost after the sleeve) and maintained a weight of about 89kgs for around 18 months. Although she still had a way to go, Karen decided she […]
Breast Reduction Issues with Big Boobs – Dr Mark Hanikeri discusses How a Breast Reduction Can Help March 29, 2016 - The majority of discussions on cosmetic breast plastic surgery seem to focus on women who want implants or augmentation: types of implants, improved implants or replacement implants. Basically, for those women who want bigger breasts, so they can feel more comfortable with their femininity. What about those of us who struggle with naturally big (in some cases, really big!) breasts though? Those who have spent a lifetime trying to accommodate them and who, as opposed to the majority of breast surgery patients, would prefer not to attract the unwanted attention usually afforded to those with a big bosom! Don’t we deserve the opportunity to feel comfortable with our sense of femininity too? We referred to Dr Mark Hanikeri, Specialist Plastic Surgeon from Western Australia to contribute his knowledge on the benefits of a breast reduction and what other issues can be associated with having breasts too large for our frame. Dr Hanikeri says, “Many women suffer from symptoms that they do not even realise are related to having large breasts. Symptoms include neck ache, back ache, shoulder pain, problems with bra straps which cut into the soft tissues of the shoulders and neck, rash underneath the breasts and social embarrassment.” […]
Karen's Breast Reduction Karen’s Breast Burden – Breast Reduction Story March 10, 2016 - For many women, it’s a dream or desire to have bigger breasts. Whether it is to fill out bras or clothes better and have that cleavage that makes us feel more womanly or to attract the guys. However, for many other women, they have the completely opposite issue. Their breasts are too large and cause all sorts of issues that can be debilitating and affect their life to the point where they are revolving their physical activities and capabilities around managing the pain and burden. Karen was one of those women with the second issue – and the other women in her family were the same. They had all inherited extra large breasts, and with it came a whole range of physical problems that made Karen’s everyday life a struggle. “I had back problems, constant headaches and neck pain. Because of the chronic pain, I couldn’t stand up for too long, so I spent my life looking for the next place to sit down.” We ask Karen what finally prompted her to get her breast reduction. “My sister and niece had had it done years ago. For me, it was a matter of waiting until I was financial. I went […]
Dr John Newton on Breast Reduction Dr John Newton discusses Breast Reduction March 3, 2016 - Trish: I’m here today with Dr. John Newton, who’s a plastic surgeon from the Newcastle area. Thank you so much for taking the time to talk to me today. Dr. John Newton: My pleasure, Trish. Thank you for having me. Trish: Lovely. I just want to have a chat to you about some of the procedures that you do in your surgery. Today particularly I want to talk to you about breast reduction. Can you tell us a little bit about what the procedure involves and how long it takes and just what someone would like to know? Dr. John Newton: I think the first thing is having a breast reduction, is it’s a fantastic operation. Big bossums, which I like to call them, which have troubled them sometimes since they were young teenagers. Its a really troublesome thing for some women and even for some really young women. A breast reduction, I think is really almost a no-lose operation for most patients. First thing is to know is that breast reduction is great surgery. It can change their lives and make them much, much more comfortable physically, it relieves shoulder and neck pain, back pain, reduce the sweating they […]
Big Breasts The Burden of Big Breasts January 20, 2015 - Bigger boobs are something that many of us dream about and consider surgery for at some point in our lives. The International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ISAPS) reports that 1,773,584 women underwent Breast Augmentation in 2013. This compares with 641,189 having breast reductions (although this figure includes men having breast reductions also). Whilst some women dream of having larger breasts, others already carry the burden and it causes more issues and pain than most of us realise. Having too large breasts can affect your quality of life. It can be debilitating and incapacitating enough to cause not only physical issues, but emotional ones. There are many health problems that arise from having larger breasts: Neck, back and shoulder pain; Chafing/rashes (from the breasts rubbing against the skin); Poor posture; Discomfort (unable to sit, stand or sleep without some form of constant adjustment); Breathing issues (from the large weight bearing down on the chest); Migraines/headaches; Nerve damage. There are also emotional issues associated with being extra well endowed in the breast area. These stem from: Self Consciousness/Paranoia; Undesired attention; Low Self-Esteem; Limitation in everyday tasks and activities; Discrimination (not always for the better); Inability to find clothes/bras that fit; Isolation; […]
Jeanette's Breast Reduction Jeanette’s Breast Reduction, “I Felt Like a Freak” January 20, 2015 - Jeanette’s story is one all too familiar for women who naturally grow larger than average breasts. Whilst many women dream of having bigger breasts, there are those that have them too large. Having really large breasts can cause a range of physical and emotional issues. Jeanette has been brave enough to give us an honest account of her experience and tell it as it really is. Q: Jeanette, what prompted you to have plastic surgery? Neck and Back pain were the physical problems I endured but the deepest and most sinister problems were self-esteem. Meeting new people, going to the shops – anything social – became unbearable. I would grocery shop very early in the morning and be exiting before any crowds started. I would always wear a black knitted vest over my work shirt that was way too big but I felt it covered me and hide the pulled shirt buttons, it didn’t matter how hot the day was my vest stayed on. Going for job interviews was exceptionally difficult; anything out of my normal routine was hard as I felt that everyone was looking at the woman with the huge breasts. They were not looking at my resume, […]
Bigger isn’t Always Better: Breast Reduction and Why it’s Helping Women’s Self Esteem Bigger isn’t Always Better: Breast Reduction and Why it’s Helping Women’s Self Esteem March 19, 2014 - In such an image driven society big breasts may be admired. For those that possess them however, it can be comfortably agreed that bigger is not always better. With the physical and emotional issues that come with women having large breasts – from difficulty sleeping, chronic pain and low self-esteem, breast reduction is the answer for many women suffering. In the US, there is one reduction performed for every two augmentations. The surgery involves the removal of glandular tissue, fat and skin to reduce the size of the breasts. The actual reduction size is determined by the amount of breast tissue that can be safely removed, whilst still preserving blood flow to the nipple and areola area. The general aim is for the breast size to be in proportion with the rest of the women’s body. Women with large breasts typically experience neck and back pain from the weight of the breasts. They can have poor posture, suffer from indentations from the bra straps or develop rashes and painful chafing under the breasts. We look into why bigger isn’t always better and the top reasons why women love their smaller breasts. Pain Relief Having extra weight strapped to the front […]
Bilateral Breast Reduction Tory’s Story – Bilateral Breast Reduction – Real Story May 9, 2013 - “At the time of the surgery I was unhappy with the result because the surgeon didn’t take out as much as I asked. He also didn’t listen when we talked about post op procedure. I mentioned I was allergic to tapes, ending up not being able to use them and having horrible keloid scars. 10 year later I still have very visible scars.”

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