Having breasts that are exceptionally large can lead to numerous problems, both physically and psychologically. Large breasts sometimes cause pain in the shoulders, back and neck. They can also cause poor posture. When they draw unwelcome attention, large breasts can make women feel self-conscious. For these reasons, many women opt for breast reduction surgery.
Breast reduction is a procedure in which excess fat, skin and glandular tissue is removed from the breasts. The breasts are modified to a size that is proportionate to your body. The procedure is intended to correct a number of problems including chronic pain, irritation under the breasts, poor posture, limited activity, poor self-esteem and difficulties fitting into clothing.
“At 45 years old, I was forced with the daunting task of having a medically necessary breast reduction. At my initial consult, Dr. Schlechter encouraged me and reassured me I would be okay! He also would be able to make my quality of life improve. Surgery went well and surpassed my expectations! I could not be happier!!! Dr. Schlechter is a brilliant and compassionate surgeon!” – Karen
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How is a Breast Reduction Performed?
Prior to beginning the operation, measurements are carefully made and marks and lines are placed on the breasts. You are given general anesthesia so you are not awake during the procedure. Incisions are made around the areola and vertically down the breast. Excess tissue is carefully removed from these incisions. The nipple and areola commonly remain attached, but they are sometimes removed and relocated to a higher position on the breast known as nipple grafting. The incisions are closed using sutures that dissolve, and the breasts are covered with bandages that are secured with a soft bra.
Am I a Candidate for a Breast Reduction?
If you have excessively large breasts and you are in good overall health, you may be a candidate for the breast reduction procedure. Let your surgeon know about any illnesses and disorders as well as any medications you are currently taking. If you are in pain or suffering from psychological distress due to your breast size, your insurance may cover the cost of the procedure. Patients who smoke are very poor candidates for the procedure given the increased risk of complications with smokers.
Recovery from Breast Reduction
Following your breast reduction procedure, your breasts will be bandaged and a soft bra is used to secure the bandages. Drainage tubes are typically not used. Your surgeon will give you detailed instruction on how to care for your bandages. During the first few days of recovery, your breasts are likely to feel sore and sensitive. Bruising and swelling are also common. Your surgeon will prescribe medication to manage discomfort and decrease the risk of infection. You will need to avoid strenuous physical activities for up to six weeks while your breasts heal. Depending on the nature of your job, you may be able to return to in as little as five days.