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Breast reduction (reduction mammoplasty) is a surgical procedure to reduce breast volume in order to alleviate pain and self-consciousness caused by heavy breasts. If you have large breasts, you may experience neck, shoulder, and back pain, as well as rashes under the breasts and grooves in your shoulders from bra straps. If so, a breast reduction may relieve these symptoms.
Breast reduction surgery can also correct breast asymmetries, and it can provide better proportion with your figure. Many women find that it is easier to find clothes to fit them. Women who have breast reduction are usually very satisfied with the results. Most insurance companies cover this procedure, so check with your carrier to see if it is part of your benefits.
Dr. Beale will examine you during your consultation and ask you a number of questions about what symptoms you are having related to your breasts and how you would like them to look after your breast reduction. He will then discuss the different options with you in detail so that you know what to expect from your surgery. He has many years of experience providing successful breasts reductions for his patients. He approaches every patient as an individual, customizing his approach to your needs, goals, and anatomy.
The Breast Reduction Procedure
In a breast reduction, excess skin, fat, and glandular tissue are removed, making the breasts smaller, tighter, and lifted in appearance. The breasts are reshaped and lifted to a youthful position on the chest, and the areolas and nipples are repositioned to an ideal central location. The areolas may be reduced in size as well to better match the smaller breast size.
There are multiple techniques for this surgery, so Dr. Beale will collaborate with you to determine the best surgical plan for your needs. Most options involve incisions around the nipple or areola that extends vertically down to the breast fold, as well as horizontally along the breast crease.
The surgery is performed in a hospital or surgery center under general anesthesia, and lasts two to three hours. You may be able to go home the same day, depending on your overall general health.
Recovery from a Breast Reduction
Most sutures used in breast reduction are placed below the skin and dissolve on their own, so they do not have to be removed. Incisions are usually dressed with skin glue as well, and you will be given a surgical bra for comfort and support during your recovery period.
You will need to limit your activities for 48 hours to reduce any discomfort, but you will be provided with medications to control any pain you experience. Drains are frequently placed below the skin to capture any post-surgical fluids, but these are removed the morning after surgery.
You may shower the next morning, and you can resume normal activities within a few days. You should avoid strenuous activities for a few weeks. The scars will become less visible over a period of months following your surgery.
Some bruising and swelling is to be expected, but this will go away within a few weeks. We will ask you to be careful during sleep and will provide you with detailed post-operative instructions. You will see Dr. Beale for follow-up examinations to make sure you are healing well and that you are happy with your results.
Call us for an appointment to discuss how breast reduction can relieve the pain and self-consciousness of heavy breasts.