Breast Reduction: 5 Important Facts You Should Know

Women graphic walkingThere are five most important facts every woman should know about breast reduction surgery. Breast reduction surgery removes excess skin and breast tissue to achieve a breast appearance in proportion with your body and to alleviate the discomfort associated with overly large breasts. During the procedure, once the skin and breast tissue is removed, the nipple is repositioned higher on the chest.

In our recent blogs, we discussed insurance coverage for breast reduction surgery and how a woman’s weight can be a factor in the coverage decision made by your insurance carrier.  We want you to be as informed as possible before you choose to have breast reduction surgery at the Bashioum Cosmetic Surgery Center, Ltd., so if you or a loved one is considering it, continue reading this blog! We hope these quick facts will help you better prepare for a consultation with your board certified plastic surgeon.

1.  Will there be scars after surgery?

Scars are a product of all surgeries, but it is important to understand where breast reduction scars will appear.. Our breast reduction scars are located around the nipple, straight down to the fold beneath the breast and in the fold itself. They are the shape of a keyhole or anchor. They are inconspicuous and can be easily covered with clothing. However, when your breasts are uncovered, the scars will be visible. There are procedures which leave shorter or less scars, but in my opinion, these do not give as natural a breast shape once healed.

2.  Will I lose feeling in my nipples?

Although rare, complete loss of nipple feeling can occur due to nerve injury. This may interfere with sexual arousal and breast-feeding. Ten to fifteen percent of patients experience some change in breast feeling. This can include loss of nipple sensation.

There are risks with any surgery. Infection, excessive bleeding, abnormal scarring, poor healing, slow healing, skin loss, changes in skin sensation, muscle or nerve injury, although uncommon, can occur. Although rare, loss of a nipple is possible. Fortunately, most problems resulting from such complications are correctable with additional surgery. You must completely understand your risk of complications before you choose to have breast reduction surgery.

3.  How old do I have to be to have this surgery?

Breast development can continue into the early twenties. When breast reduction surgery is done before this time, there is a chance the surgery will have to be repeated. In addition, it may be emotionally difficult to adjust to the surgery during teen years. For these reasons, many insurance carriers will not cover the cost of a breast reduction if a woman is younger than eighteen years of age.

4.  How long must I wait after breast-feeding before I can have breast reduction surgery?

You must wait for three to six months after breast-feeding before you can proceed with breast reduction surgery. This is due to an increased risk of blood and/or milk collections. In addition, it is impossible to predict what the size of your breasts will be until all the milk formation has passed.

5.  Will breast reduction surgery increase my risks of breast cancer?

Breast reduction does not increase your risk of developing breast cancer. However, all women are at risk for breast cancer and one in eight women in the US will be diagnosed with a new breast cancer. If you have family members who have had breast cancer, your risk is increased. Examine your breasts monthly and have mammograms as suggested by your primary care physician. Remember that breast cancer can occur at any age and a physician must properly evaluate all breast lumps.

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