Breast Reduction

Breast reduction can be an ideal operation for women affected by large, cumbersome breasts that are too big for their body frame. This procedure can also be performed for men who are suffering from gynecomastia. Breast reduction can be of considerable benefit from both cosmetic and physiological perspectives, as the results can bring one’s body into more balanced proportions while reducing the physical discomforts that overly large breasts can cause. Dr. Semira Bayati, our experienced plastic surgeon in Newport Beach, can develop a customized treatment plan designed to help you reduce the size of your breasts with results that look both natural and beautiful.

What is Breast Reduction?

Sometimes, during the course of development, the breasts naturally hypertrophy (enlarge) to excessive sizes, regardless of an individual’s weight. In other cases, pregnancy and breastfeeding can lead to irreversible enlargement of the breasts to undesirable sizes. Breast reduction is a surgical procedure that can remove excess skin and/or fat from the breasts to make them more proportionate to a patient’s size and body type. The treatment ultimately eliminates the excess and reshapes the breasts for a more balanced and comfortable result. In addition, natural asymmetry of large breasts is not uncommon and can be corrected at the time of surgery.

What Can Breast Reduction Surgery Do for Me?

Some of the many benefits offered by breast reduction surgery include:

  • Smaller breasts that provide more balanced aesthetic proportions
  • Relief from pain in the shoulders, neck, and back that is often caused by overly large breasts
  • Reduction in skin rashes that may be occurring under the breasts
  • Reduction in breast ptosis (sagging)
  • The freedom to engage in exercises without being inhibited by large, pendulous breasts
  • Less self-consciousness in social situations
  • Reduction in the likelihood of bra-strap indentations
  • Greater ability to fit into desired clothing

Who is a Candidate for Breast Reduction?

Candidates for breast reduction are typically those who want to address the cosmetic and physical effects caused by breasts that are simply too large for their bodies. Ideal candidates should be in reasonably good general health and have realistic expectations for the outcome of breast reduction surgery. Dr. Bayati will meet with you for an initial consultation and perform a comprehensive evaluation. She will listen to your concerns, talk with you about your goals, and help you determine if this procedure is the best option for your needs. Dr. Bayati can also advise what size is proportional to your height and weight without making you “too small.” It is better if you close to your ideal weight at the time of this operation because if you lose weight after surgery, your newly-sized breasts can get smaller and looser. However, in reality, most patients have difficulty exercising with larger breasts and as a result they find it difficult to maintain an ideal weight.

Breast reduction can be performed on its own or as part of a comprehensive Mommy Makeover procedure for women who want to restore their pre-pregnancy figures. Dr. Bayati will thoroughly discuss your needs and goals during the initial consultation.

How is Breast Reduction Surgery Performed?

Breast reduction surgery is typically completed in about three to four hours, and can be performed on an outpatient basis under general anesthesia. Techniques vary depending on each patient’s unique needs. In some cases, liposuction alone may be all that’s necessary to reach one’s goals; however, many patients will require a more traditional breast reduction. In most breast reduction procedures, an incision is made around the areola and then extended down to where the breast meets the chest wall. Excess glandular tissue, fat, and/or skin will be removed, and Dr. Bayati will then reshape and recontour the breasts for the most balanced, symmetrical appearance possible.

What Can I Expect During Breast Reduction Recovery?

Most individuals need about one to two weeks to recover from breast reduction surgery. A surgical bra will likely need to be worn for several days to encourage healing. Some degree of bruising and swelling in the breasts can be expected in the weeks following surgery, but any discomfort can be alleviated with medication. Strenuous exercises and heavy lifting should be avoided for at least four weeks after breast reduction surgery. It’s important to note that weight gain and future pregnancies can result in recurrence of breast hypertrophy even after breast reduction surgery. With that in mind, maintaining a healthy weight and waiting to have this procedure until after you have completed your family is often recommended for the best long-term results.

Will the Scars from Breast Reduction be Visible?

There will be noticeable scars following a breast reduction procedure; however, Dr. Bayati takes great care with her incision techniques to make residual scarring as minimal as possible. Over time, the scars should fade to some degree. With proper scar management, products, and occasional laser fading, they are typically very well-hidden and acceptable.

How Much Does Breast Reduction Surgery Cost?

Depending on the size of the reduction, insurance might cover at least part of the cost of surgery. Small reductions that are mostly to lift the breasts and reduce the volume slightly are considered a cosmetic operation and are not covered by most insurance carriers. The total cost of breast reduction surgery typically includes factors such as the surgeon’s fee, the facility fee, anesthesiologist’s fee, the complexity of the operation, and other components. The price will also depend on whether any adjunctive procedures were included in the treatment plan. Liposuction of the love handles, pubic region, the upper back (for excess fat that hangs over the bra strap), and/or the underarm areas is a common option that patients may wish to include. After you have been evaluated and a customized treatment plan has been created, a member of our team will present you with a total estimate of the cost of breast reduction surgery. Our practice offers a number of payment options and we work with Alphaeon™ Credit and CareCredit®, two of the most reputable plastic surgery financing companies in the nation who offer flexible payment plans to qualified applicants. We will be happy to assist you with finding the most financially convenient method of payment for your treatment.

Additional Frequently Asked Questions About Breast Reduction

Will my insurance cover breast reduction?

Medical insurance policies may offer coverage for some of the costs relating to breast reduction surgery as long as the procedure is considered medically necessary. As noted in the section above, reductions that are smaller in nature and primarily performed to create a “lifting” effect are typically not covered.

Does a breast reduction also provide a breast lift?

Breast reduction surgery often produces a certain degree of lifting if the technique involves the removal of excess skin. In these cases, the breasts are reshaped and repositioned following skin excision, which often yields results similar to that of a breast lift. For patients who are generally satisfied with the size of their breasts but would like to address breast ptosis (sagging), a breast lift may actually be a more ideal treatment.

How painful is breast reduction?

Most patients feel a relief from the weight of the large breasts almost immediately. However, there will be some discomfort in the days following breast reduction surgery due to swelling and soreness around the incisions; however, this can often be well-managed with medication. Plenty of rest and close adherence to post-operative instructions can also help ensure the healing process is as smooth as possible.

How can I reduce swelling after breast reduction?

Swelling is a common side effect of breast reduction surgery and can be expected to peak within the first week, followed by a gradual dissipation. During that time, swelling can often be controlled and potentially reduced at a quicker pace by wearing any prescribed surgical garments as recommended, eating a healthy diet rich in proteins and antioxidants (leafy greens, fish, and fruits are typically good options), and minimizing salt intake.

When can I wear a bra after breast reduction?

Loose-fitting bras that are not equipped with an underwire can typically be worn approximately three weeks following breast augmentation surgery. Dr. Bayati may advise you to wait for an even longer period just to be sure that healing is not compromised.

What about male breast reduction?

Dr. Bayati can perform advanced male breast reduction surgery for men who are experiencing gynecomastia. Liposuction or tissue excision have proven very successful for many patients who suffer from this common concern. With male breast reduction surgery, Dr. Bayati can eliminate excess skin, glandular tissue, and/or fat in the breasts to create a flatter-looking chest.

Learn more about male breast reduction options.

For more information on breast reduction surgery, or to schedule a consultation with Dr. Bayati, please contact us today.

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