What Can I Expect After Breast Reduction Surgery?
It’s been described as having the weight of the world being lifted – not from the shoulder, but from the chest – both literally and figuratively. I’m talking about reduction mammoplasty, more commonly called breast reduction surgery.
Women undergo breast reduction for many reasons – addressing both medical concerns and aesthetics. These may include chronic back, neck, and shoulder pain, restricted physical activity, skin irritation, inability to fit into bras and other clothing, and in some cases loss of self-confidence. No doubt – having breast reduction surgery can be a big decision. But after they’ve had it done and their breasts have settled nicely into place, most women are pleased that they went forward with the surgery and regret not having done it sooner. In fact, this surgery is consistently cited as one of the highest patient satisfaction in cosmetic procedures. That’s certainly the case among my patients.
Benefits of Breast Reduction Surgery
Whether you’re planning to get the surgery or you’re still on the fence, you’ll obviously need to know what to expect after breast reduction surgery. The procedure involves reducing both the size and the weight of the breasts, by removing excess fat, breast tissue, and skin from the breasts. Depending on breast-size and technique, the surgery itself takes about two-and-a-half hours. A breast reduction includes a breast lift. Now – let’s talk post-surgery.
After Breast Reduction Surgery
Immediately after surgery, you will be wearing either a surgical bra or elasticated bandage, which you will need to wear for about a week. Most patients will then wear a gently compressive sports bra for about six weeks. All sutures are dissolvable. If necessary you may need to go home with drainage tubes, though I generally don’t use them. Breast reduction recovery time will vary, but you will need help for a few days afterward. You should also avoid any strenuous activity for at least three weeks. Your breasts will continue shaping, which you and I will watch together for six months. And if we’re happy with the results – excellent! Otherwise, we can make adjustments.
Many of my patients ask about nipple sensation after breast reduction surgery. If it’s a standard breast reduction in which we leave the nipple attached, then – yes, it’s possible to maintain nipple sensation, though it is not guaranteed. Another common question I get – will I be able to breastfeed after breast reduction surgery? Again, like the nipple sensation question, with standard surgery, breastfeeding is possible, but not a guarantee. Scarring after breast reduction surgery is another concern. I take great strides to minimize the cosmetic impact of the scars, but they will be present. And genetics play a crucial role in the healing process.
Benefits of Breast Reduction Surgery
Now – here are some of the many reasons for high satisfaction rates after breast reduction surgery:
- Better proportioned breasts, giving you a more balanced look
- Lifted and firmer breasts will give you a more youthful look
- Strong evidence suggests reducing the weight of the breasts helps alleviate neck, back, and shoulder pain
- Your bras and other clothing will fit better and may help to boost your self-confidence
And by the way, breast reduction isn’t only for women. Breast reduction surgery for men is called gynecomastia. It helps men whose breasts are abnormally enlarged.
Come in For a Consultation for Breast Reduction Surgery
I would love the opportunity to talk with you further about breast reduction surgery and the recovery process, along with the approach I take to each cosmetic procedure. Call my office at 301-656-6398 and make an appointment for an hour-long consultation. I have three locations, two in Maryland and a location in Virginia. I hope to see you soon!