What is breast reduction?
Technically known as Reduction Mammoplasty, this is one of the most popular cosmetic procedure in the UK. Excess skin, and breast tissue is removed largely from below. The scars are hidden in the bra. The reshaped breast is not only more attractive but totally natural looking.
Many women are happy to have large breasts but others regard them as a nuisance, attracting unwanted attention. Large breasts can also be extremely uncomfortable and physically restricting. Breast reduction can solve these problems, bringing psychological relief and eliminating physical distress. The procedure aims to remove excess breast tissue making the breasts smaller and improving their shape. The nipple is repositioned and the lower part of the breast removed to make it smaller. The skin is then tightened to form the new breast. There is visible scarring, but this becomes less noticeable with time and should not be visible if a swimming bra is worn.
The recovery period
Surprisingly there is very little discomfort, although there may be some post operative swelling. You will be advised to wear a properly fitted support bra night and day for six weeks, which will support the breasts and aid the healing process.
The procedure takes approximately three hours. It is normally carried out under general anaesthesia to make you sleep through the entire procedure. There are several different methods used, and preferences can be discussed with your surgeon at the time of consultation, and your consultant anaesthetist will be present throughout surgery to be certain you are comfortable and pain free.
Before and after
The recovery period
You will be in hospital one to two nights in general. Surprisingly there is little discomfort, although there may be some post operative swelling. You will be advised to wear a properly fitted support bra night and day for six weeks, which will support the breasts and aid the healing process. Although you will be up and about on the day after surgery your surgeon will advise you when you can resume your daily routine. To permit proper healing you should avoid overhead lifting for six weeks. The decision regarding when you should return to work and fully resume normal activities depends on how fast you heal and how you feel. However, most patients return to work within two weeks. You can attend the gym and participate in sports after approximately six weeks.
How will I look?
The eventual size of the breasts is discussed between yourself and your surgeon during the initial consultation, achieving the appearance you have planned together.
Your new breasts should look and feel completely improved- They will not affect fertility, pregnancy but may affect your ability to breastfeed. However, if you have nursed a baby within the year prior to surgery you should delay surgery until one year after stopping lactating (milk production).
After the procedure, most women adapt instantly to their new shape and rarely give a second thought to their scars.
As the purpose of the procedure is to make breasts as attractive as possible, the scars are kept as small as possible and made either around the nipple, under the crease of the breast, or in the armpit.
The scars are generally around the nipple, vertical down, and then across. They generally start off red and then fade to white. Rarely you can get a thickened scar or keloid scar, which can be treated with injections if it is a problem.
Will I experience any problems?
Sometimes nipple sensation can change, very rarely there can be partial or complete nipple loss (particularly in smokers). There is a small chance of haematoma, or infection after any operation. There are risks related to general anesthesia, such as DVT (deep vein thrombosis) or PE(pulmonary embolus). Precautions such as heparin, TED stockings and Flowtrons will be used to minimise these risks.
Are there any long-term risks?
Cancer of the breast has been extensively researched. Results of this research show that there is some evidence that breast reduction reduces the chance of future development of breast cancer.
Other cosmetic enhancements for breasts
Breast uplift – Breast feeding and weight loss can lead to breasts sagging and an uplift is designed to restore breasts to their former, more youthful shape and tone, without altering their size. The procedure involves repositioning the nipple and removing excess skin caused by stretching, this can be combined with an implant to enhance shape.
How much will it cost?
Your best investment is an individual consultation with a surgeon you trust. Cosmetic Surgery is usually a life-time investment. Cheaper is not necessarily better or even as good. Our patients are treated as individuals, and costs do vary from person to person dependant on their individual needs. However, the total cost of your procedure will be quoted at the consultation, fully inclusive with no hidden extras.
We have negotiated some remarkably low prices at UK hospitals for patients who are able to travel, and flexible on date of surgery.
Should I have breast surgery?
Breast reduction can reduce neck and back pain, and can help with chronic infection below the breasts. The vast majority of patients who have this procedure are delighted, and wondered why they ever delayed.