Patients who desire a breast reduction are usually attempting to diminish the symptoms that are caused by excessively large and heavy breasts such as neck, back, and shoulder pain. The goal of breast reduction surgery is not only to improve or eliminate these symptoms but also to improve the size and shape of the breasts.
Breast reduction can be performed at any age, but it is usually recommended to wait until breast development is complete. Pregnancy and breastfeeding may have significant effects on the size and shape of your breasts. Some women may elect to have breast surgery prior to having children. Breast lift surgery may affect your ability to breastfeed; this point will be discussed at your consultation.
Your breast reduction Surgical Experience
Dr. Reubin and his office staff will make your surgical experience as easy and comfortable for you as possible.
Breast reduction may be performed on an outpatient basis or with an overnight stay in the hospital.
Usually, a general anesthetic is administered, so that you will be asleep throughout the procedure. When surgery is completed, you will be taken into a recovery area where you will continue to be closely monitored. In many instances, small drain tubes will have been placed in your breasts to help avoid the accumulation of fluids. Gauze dressings will be placed on your breasts and covered with an elastic bandage or surgical bra.
If you are a smoker, you will be asked to stop smoking well in advance of surgery. Aspirin and certain anti-inflammatory drugs can cause increased bleeding, so you should avoid taking these medications for a period of time before surgery. Your surgeon will provide you with additional preoperative instructions.
Good Candidates for Breast Reduction
- breasts that are too large and out of proportion to your body
- heavy, pendulous breasts with nipples and areolas that are too low
- significant asymmetry (one breast larger than the other)
- back, neck or shoulder pain caused by the weight of your breasts
- skin irritation beneath your breasts
- indentations in your shoulders from tight bra straps (shoulder grooving)
- your physical activity is restricted due to the size and weight of your breasts
- dissatisfaction or self-consciousness about the largeness of your breasts
The most common method of reducing the breasts involves three incisions. One incision is made around the areola. Another runs vertically from the bottom edge of the areola to the crease underneath the breast. The third incision follows the natural curve of the breast crease. Dr. Reubin commonly performs breast reductions without the horizontal scar, in addition, he utilizes the latest techniques of internal breast reshaping to give the best possible postoperative breast contour and most long lasting result.
The Consultation Process
During the consultation, you will be asked about your desired breast shape and size. Dr. Reubin will discuss your options regarding different techniques, the placement of incisions. Dr. Reubin will spend as much time as necessary to make you feel completely comfortable about your decision and answer all of your questions.
Dr. Reubin will examine you, taking measurements and perhaps photographs for your medical record. The size and shape of your breasts, the quality of your skin, and the placement of the nipples and areola' s will be carefully evaluated.
What to Expect After breast reduction Surgery
There will be some associated swelling and bruising secondary to the breast reduction surgery. The breasts will take some time to settle and relax into a more natural position. This process takes several weeks and it is important to understand that you will only be able to assess your results after this healing period. Dr. Reubin will recommend appropriate scar treatments. Dr. Reubin typically places all sutures internally which has several benefits for his patients. The scars are of the best quality possible and there is less discomfort as there is no need for painful suture removal.
Post-op Activity Restrictions
Dr. Reubin’s breast reduction patients typically return to their normal daily activities within a few days after breast reduction surgery. However, you will need to restrict any strenuous activity for a week and there will be no lifting anything over 5-10 lbs for the first 2 weeks. Activities and exercise that involve the chest muscles, running, and jumping is restricted for 4-6 weeks. You may be instructed to wear a surgical bra for several weeks. Patients typically return to work within 1-2 weeks.
Nipple sensation may be altered postoperatively and this may take weeks to months to return to normal.
Risks after breast reduction surgery
The subject of risks and potential complications of breast reduction surgery is best discussed on a personal basis between you and Dr. Reubin at the time of your consultation.
Some of the potential complications that may be discussed with you include bleeding, infection and reactions to anesthesia. Following a breast lift, sometimes the breasts may not be perfectly symmetrical or the nipple height may vary slightly. Minor adjustments often can be made at a later time. Permanent loss of sensation in the nipples or areas of breast skin may occur rarely.
The goal of breast reduction surgery is to reduce the size of the breasts in addition to improving the contour. The position of your areola's and nipples will be enhanced, and the size of your areola's will be aesthetically pleasing.
The incisions from your breast lift surgery will heal and fade over time. It is important to realize, however, that the incision lines will be permanently visible. In some instances, they will eventually be only faint lines. Certain individuals may have incision lines that are more noticeable. Fortunately, the incisions for your breast lift are in locations easily concealed by clothing, even low-cut necklines.
Unless you gain or lose a significant amount of weight or become pregnant, your new breast shape should remain fairly constant. However, gravity and the effects of aging will eventually alter the size and shape of virtually every woman’s breasts. If, after a period of years, you again become dissatisfied with the appearance of your breasts, you may choose to undergo a second breast lift procedure to restore their more youthful contour and appearance.