After researching the basics about breast reduction, many patients want to know what to expect before breast reduction surgery.
Prior to breast reduction surgery, you may be asked to:
- Get lab testing or a medical evaluation
- Take certain medications or adjust your current medications
- Get a baseline mammogram before surgery and another one after surgery to help detect any future changes in your breast tissue
- Stop smoking well in advance of breast reduction surgery
- Avoid taking aspirin, anti-inflammatory drugs and herbal supplements as they can increase bleeding
Special instructions you receive will cover:
- What to do on the day of surgery
- Post-operative care and follow-up
Your plastic surgeon will also discuss where your procedure will be performed. Breast reduction surgery may be performed in an accredited office-based surgical center, outpatient/ambulatory surgical center, or a hospital.
You’ll need help
If your breast reduction procedure is performed on an outpatient basis, be sure to arrange for someone to drive you to and from surgery, and to stay with you the following night.
Choose a breast reduction surgeon you can trust
Breast reduction surgery involves many choices. The first and most important is selecting a board-certified plastic surgeon you can trust.
Choosing a Cosmetic Surgeon
If you’re considering having a breast reduction, choosing a cosmetic surgeon is the most important decision you’ll make. While some in the plastic surgery field consider breast reduction to be a reconstructive procedure, a patient’s goal is rarely to solely correct physical symptoms without any consideration for aesthetic improvements. You should feel confident that your cosmetic surgeon can both reduce your breasts to the right size to alleviate any discomfort caused by large breasts and create a more beautiful breast shape that looks natural with your body.
When you visit potential surgeons, ask how frequently he/she performs breast reduction surgery and how many total procedures that surgeon has performed. View before and after photos, not just on a surgeon’s website but also during your consultation, paying close attention to the results of patients whose “before” photos look similar to you and whose breasts in the “after” photos look good to you—this will help you understand a cosmetic surgeon’s aesthetic style, which will play a significant role in how your breasts will look after surgery.
Search for cosmetic surgeon
Make sure your cosmetic surgeon is board certified; this ensures that he or she is specifically trained and experienced in cosmetic surgery and that your procedure will take place in an accredited facility, which is essential for your safety. Finally, don’t choose a cosmetic surgeon based on price alone. Your safety & results are too important. Most cosmetic surgeons offer financing options to help patient’s budget procedure costs.
Breast Reduction Options
Cosmetic surgeons can use one of several different surgical techniques when performing breast reduction; which technique a surgeon will use for any given patient depends on the patient’s existing breast anatomy, the type and amount of tissue to be removed, and the patient’s desired outcome.
Liposuction for Breast Reduction
In certain cases, breast reduction can be performed using liposuction alone.
The advantages of liposuction for breast reduction are a shorter, less invasive procedure, virtually undetectable scars on the breast, and lasting results. However, this technique will only achieve optimal results in certain patients. The best candidates are those who need or desire a slight to moderate reduction in breast size, have good skin elasticity and little to no sagging to correct, and whose excess breast size is largely due to excess fatty tissue.
If you have sagging, asymmetrical breasts, stretched skin, or a more significant amount of tissue to remove, one of the next breast reduction techniques will probably benefit you the most.\
Vertical or “Lollipop” Breast Reduction
Patients who need a moderate reduction in breast size and have more noticeable sagging are often good candidates for a vertical breast reduction. This involves two incision sites: one is around the edge of the areola, and a second incision running vertically from the bottom of the areola to the inframammary fold, or the crease beneath the breast. This incision pattern allows a cosmetic surgeon to remove excess fat, skin and breast tissue, reshape the new smaller breast internally, and lift the breast into a more youthful position.
While a vertical breast reduction leaves some scarring on the breast, it is limited to the area below the nipple and therefore can be easily hidden beneath a bra or bikini top.
Inverted-T or “Anchor” Breast Reduction
The inverted-T breast reduction involves 3 incisions: one around the edge of the areola, one vertically from the areola to the breast crease, and one made along the crease underneath the breast. Because this technique allows for the maximum degree of tissue removal and reshaping, cosmetic surgeons will typically use this approach if a patient needs a more significant breast size reduction and/or has considerable sagging or asymmetry to correct.
The scars resulting from an inverted-T or anchor breast reduction are similar to those from a vertical reduction, with one additional, thin scar running along the crease beneath the breast. With proper care, scars typically fade considerably over the first year or so after surgery and are easily concealed by clothing, even a bikini top.
Your breast will be lifted and firmer, helping you look more youthful, Bras will fit more comfortably and attractively, with better proportioned breasts, your overall silhouette will be more balanced and attractive, Swimsuits, sports bras, and form-fitting clothes will look and feel better, helping boost your confidence during activity.