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FAQ - Breast Reduction

  • What is a breast reduction?

    Breast reduction surgery, also called reduction mammaplasty, is a procedure designed to reduce the size of, reshape and reposition the breasts. The goals are to improve symptoms (such as back pain), to improve body proportions, and to improve the aesthetics of the breasts.

  • Who is a candidate for a breast reduction?

    The best candidates for breast reduction surgery are healthy, non-smoking women whose breasts have fully developed and who are experiencing physical and/or emotional discomfort due to their breast size.

  • What is the difference between a breast reduction and a breast lift?

    A breast lift (mastopexy) and a breast reduction often have the same incision patterns. The difference between the two procedures is the removal of breast tissue. A breast lift is only the removal of excess skin, where as a breast reduction involves the removal of excess skin, fat, and breast tissue.

  • Is a mammogram required before breast reduction surgery?

    For all women 30 years of age and older a mammogram is required before surgery.

  • What should I expect after my breast reduction surgery?

    After surgery, your breasts will be dressed in gauze and a surgical bra. For a few weeks after breast reduction surgery, you can expect to experience soreness and swelling while your breasts heal. Patients can usually resume work and most activities between 7-14 days after surgery, depending on the individual and her occupation. After breast reduction, the appearance of your breasts will change with time. Three months or longer may be needed to achieve a natural "look and feel" for your breasts.

  • Will I have drains after surgery?

    Maybe. For small breast reductions we usually do not use drains. For large breast reductions we usually place drains. The drains are typically removed 2-3 days after surgery.

  • What are my restrictions after breast reduction surgery?

    We recommend that you do not elevate your heart rate or blood pressure for 3 weeks after surgery and to avoid heavy lifting (over 20 pounds) for the first 6 weeks after breast reduction. Underwire bras should be avoided for the first 6 to 8 weeks following surgery.

  • When will I be able to return to work after my breast reduction?

    Most people are back to work within 1 to 2 weeks.

  • How long does it take for the breasts to heal after breast reduction surgery?

    It takes 6 weeks to be mostly healed and to be ready to return to full activity. However, complete settling of the breast shape and maturation of the scars can take up to one year from surgery.

  • Can I breast-feed after breast reduction surgery?

    Probably. Studies have shown that breast-feeding success is similar between women that have had breast reduction surgery and those that have not had reduction surgery. The chance of being able to successfully breast feed is about 60-70% for women that have and have not had breast reduction surgery.

  • How long will my breast reduction results last?

    Your breasts will remain small, unless other changes occur to your body. Namely, the breasts will get bigger if you gain weight or become pregnant. In addition, the breasts will continue to age so they may loosen and sag more over time.

  • Will I go home the same day as my surgery?

    Breast reduction surgery is performed as an outpatient procedure, allowing you to go home within hours of your operation. However, if you desire some assistance the night after surgery we recommend you stay overnight at the Temporary Living Center (TLC) at Legacy Meridian Park Hospital. Our staff will take care of those arrangements for you.

  • If I have symptoms from my large breasts, will I feel better after breast reduction surgery?

    The majority of women report substantial improvements in physical functioning and pain following breast reduction.

  • Will future weight gain affect my breast size?

    Probably. If you have your breasts reduced and then experience significant weight gain, your breasts will likely increase in size.

  • My daughter is 16 and wants to get breast reduction surgery. Is that too young?

    We generally require that candidates for breast reduction surgery be at least 18 years old. However, in some cases young women do develop fully and can have very large breasts at an early age. In such cases, the typical physical symptoms caused by very large breasts may occur. In addition, adolescent girls with very large breasts sometimes feel very self conscious and suffer from severe social pressure. If the above situations are occurring, then breast reduction surgery may be indicated. Parental consent is required, of course.

  • Does medical insurance pay for breast reduction surgery?

    It may. You should check with your insurance carrier to see if they pay for breast reduction surgery. Typically, a documented course of symptoms related to large breasts (such as neck and back pain) is required before an insurance company would pay for breast reduction surgery.

  • Does Connall Cosmetic Surgery take insurance for breast reduction surgery?

    No. We are not contracted providers for any insurance companies. Payment for surgery is handled like any other cosmetic procedure. That is, the patient pays all fees directly. If insurance is available, then we can assist you with filing a claim with your insurance carrier and they then pay you directly.