For women bothered by their large breast size and the associated discomfort, breast reduction can be a very satisfying and life changing procedure. This procedure has both cosmetic and therapeutic benefits: reduction surgery reduces, tightens, lifts and reshapes the breasts while providing relief from the physical strain of heavy breasts.
Who Should Consider Breast Reduction?
If you meet the conditions below, breast reduction may be right for you:
- Large breasts that cause physical discomfort
- Body image issues related to large breasts
- Within 10-15 pounds of your ideal body weight
- Non-smoker and physically healthy
- Realistic expectations and capable of understanding surgery risks
How Breast Reduction Works
During breast reduction surgery, Dr. Rand removes excess tissue, fat and skin that cause the breasts to become heavy and droop. The procedure reduces breast size while sculpting and lifting the breasts to improve their shape, much like a breast lift.
Breast reduction requires surgical incisions that facilitate the reduction of excess tissue and the lifting of the remaining breast tissue. Surgery scars should be expected after breast reduction. The patient who truly benefits from this procedure should be willing to accept scars in order to improve their breast size and shape and related symptoms.
After Breast Reduction: What to Expect
Most patients can return to their normal work routine within a week of surgery, but exercise and rigorous activity will need to be postponed for three weeks. Dr. Rand will prescribe pain medication to control discomfort and provide a special surgical bra that will need to be worn day and night during the initial 3 months of the recovery period.
Breast Reduction FAQ
Will my health insurance provider cover breast reduction?
Health insurance companies will sometimes cover breast reduction but they have specific criteria you must meet. Dr. Rand is not contracted with any insurance so all fees are paid by the patients prior to surgery.
Can you reduce breast size with exercise?
Breast size can be reduced with exercise an weight loss to some extent, but unfortunately, breast shape and position will usually suffer as a result. A nipple already at or below the breast crease will stay there or even go a little lower as you lose weight.
How long does the procedure take?
Breast reduction may require 2.5 to 3 hours of operating time.
What type of anesthesia is used?
Is this an inpatient or outpatient procedure?
Breast reduction is typically outpatient. Inpatient would be an option only if necessitated by certain medical issues.
What are the possible side effects?
Temporary bruising, swelling, discomfort, numbness, dry breast skin. Permanent scars.
What are the risks?
Thick, wide scars; skin loss; infection; delayed healing. Unevenly positioned nipples. Permanent loss of feeling in nipples or breast.
How long is recovery?
Back to work: 1 week or more. Strenuous activities: 3 weeks. Fading of scars: several months to a year.
Dr. Richard Rand is a Board Certified plastic surgeon who performs breast reductions for women in the greater Seattle area and beyond. Along with his expert staff at the Northwest Center for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, Dr. Rand works closely with every patient to ensure a positive cosmetic surgery experience and a safe and secure surgical outcome.
If you’d like to learn more about the benefits of breast reduction, please don’t hesitate to contact our office in Bellevue today for more details.