About Breast Reduction
Women who require breast reduction surgery are usually troubled by breasts that restrict their activities, cause them discomfort and often leave them feeling self-conscious.
Whilst the reduction procedure does result in scarring of the breast skin, most patients are very satisfied with their result – as they no longer need to live with discomfort and can start to enjoy improved posture and confidence to go about a wider range of physical activity.
The reduction of breast size involves the removal of excess skin and breast tissue from around the nipple/areola.
The “inferior pedicle” or the “vertical scar” technique is used depending on your size, shape and their preferences in breast reduction. In both breast reduction techniques, the nipple/areola is left attached to the chest wall maintaining its blood and nerve supply. The excess skin and breast tissue is excised from around the nipple/areola mound.
The inferior pedicle technique is suitable for most patients. This results in an inverted T shaped scar with a horizontal scar along the line below the breast.
Patients for small to moderate breast reductions may be appropriate for the vertical scar technique which limits the scar to the curve of the breast below the nipple. There is no horizontal component. This technique can give a better breast shape, but there is a higher chance of minor revision surgery being required.
When is breast reduction surgery desirable?
Pain and discomfort from large breasts often occurs in the shoulders, lower neck and/or back and can be at its worst during physical activity. A breast reduction reduces, and usually eliminates this pain whilst helping to enhance posture, overall appearance and self-esteem.
Is it important that I am not overweight for breast reduction surgery to succeed ?
Yes. There is evidence that obese women (BMI* over 30) who undergo breast reduction surgery have higher complication rates and wound healing problems.
*BMI is a ratio of weight in kg over height squared. Ideal female BMI is 20-25.
What results can I expect?
The goal of surgery is to reduce your breasts to a size that is in better proportion to your physique and makes you feel more comfortable.
Will breast reduction surgery leave any scars ?
Although scars will be present, most patients believe they are worth it due to the significant health and lifestyle benefits of having breasts that are in proportion to their physique. The scars are situated around the areolae of the nipple and under the breasts and usually become less visible over 6-12 months, especially if you comply with post surgery scar management instructions. There are however a small number of patients that have a tendency to develop thick scars which will not fade as well over time.
Will my breasts be exactly equal in size after breast reduction surgery ?
There is normally a slight difference in size between the breasts and this may persist following your procedure.
Will my nipples be affected by the breast reduction surgery ?
There will be some alteration in sensation of the nipples post surgery, but this often improves with time.
Will I be able to breastfeed after breast reduction surgery ?
Possibly. There is still significant breast tissue remaining post surgery so it is possible for most women. A lot of large breasted women struggle to breastfeed. The evidence suggests 1/3 of women breast feed fully, 1/3 partially and 1/3 not at all and that these figures are similar after breast reduction surgery.
How long is my surgery post recovery?
Breast reduction surgery is performed under general anaesthetic with a 1-3 night hospital stay followed by 1-2 weeks off work to recover. Vigorous exercise can usually be resumed after about 6 weeks.
Mammoplasty: plastic surgery of the breast
Reduction mammoplasty: Breast reduction surgery
Inferior pedicle / Anchor / Inverted T technique: 3 different names for the breast reduction technique that results in an inverted “T” scar down from the nipple to the underside of the breast
Vertical scar technique: The breast reduction technique possible for some small to medium breast reductions that results in a scar from the underside of the nipple down to under the breast but which does not result in a horizontal scar under the breast
For patients with private health insurance, total fees for a breast reduction usually fall in the range of $7500-$9500.
Following your consultation, a tailored quote for your planned procedure will be provided to you.
For more information on fees and rebates click here.