Am I a candidate for breast reduction?

You may benefit from breast reduction if you have enlarged, heavy breasts and any combination of the following symptoms: neck pain, back pain, breast pain, shoulder pain, shoulder grooving, rash under the breasts, and numbness or tingling of the arms or hands. You may have tried specialty fitted bras, physical therapy, and chiropractic care without relief of your symptoms.

What does breast reduction surgery accomplish?

Patients seek relief from their back pain, the ability to exercise, fit in clothes better, and be proportional to their body. Surgeons must adequately reduce the breast volume (to meet the patient’s goals) and preserve the nipples, balanced with creating an aesthetic shape and limiting the scars.

Do all options involve extensive scars?

The traditional approach, also known as the Anchor scar, inverted-T, keyhole, or Wise pattern, has the most extensive scars but is still the gold standard because it reliably reduces the breast in all types of patients. The shape of the breasts may deteriorate with time as well as the appearance of the scars.

Liposuction reduction is an excellent option for younger patients with minimal enlargement. This technique does not address stretched out skin or sagginess.

The vertical scar techniques definitely limit the amount of scars involved. However, the final shape is sometimes unpredictable and may require revisional surgery.

We prefer the SPAIR (Short scar Peri-Areolar Reduction Mammaplasty) because it effectively reduces the breast while also limiting the scars and creating a predictable aesthetic shape. Most importantly, the result lasts.

Breast Reduction for Women

What should I expect at surgery?

You should be at a stable weight, not have breast fed for at least 6 months, and should not be smoking.

  • The Day Before: Extensive markings delineating the surgical plan
  • The Big Day: Surgery, go home the same day, with or without drains
  • Day One: You may shower, even with drains, over your waterproof dressings
  • Week One: Dressings and drains removed, begin scar care
  • Month One: No heavy lifting over 10 pounds or aerobic activity
  • Year One: Regular followup for any post surgical changes, resume mammograms

Are there any postsurgical effects I should be concerned about?

Complications that may require additional surgery include a blood collection in the breast (hematoma), nipple death, fat necrosis, and tethering from excessive internal scar formation. Other minor complications that may occur include delayed wound healing, infection, a fluid collection in the breast (seroma), numbness, and areolar wrinkling. Most of these will resolve without any surgical intervention.