Women who have breasts which are proportionately too large for their bodies may face medical problems as well as aesthetic concerns. Dr. Ramin Behmand can help to relieve some of these issues by performing breast reduction, also known as reduction mammaplasty. This surgery is designed to decrease the size of the breasts and make them more proportional to the rest of the body.
Who Is a Good Candidate for Breast Reduction?
As with any other plastic surgery procedure, such as breast augmentation, breast reduction requires careful consideration of your medical and aesthetic goals before surgery.
In general, if you experience any of the following symptoms, you may benefit from breast reduction surgery:
- Persistent back or neck pain
- Frequent headaches
- Indentations in your shoulders caused by bra straps
- Redness and chafing caused by tight bra straps
- Reluctance to participate in athletics due to discomfort or embarrassment
- Difficulty finding clothes that fit well
- Trouble breathing at night or sleeping on your stomach
Dr. Behmand was the principal author of an extensive patient study conducted at the University of Michigan to evaluate the outcomes of breast reduction surgery. The findings of the study confirmed the therapeutic role of breast reduction surgery in alleviation of symptoms associated with disproportionately large breasts and in restoration of normal physical and emotional functioning. The results of this study were published in the Annals of Plastic Surgery in the year 2000.
- I’m having neck and back pain; will insurance cover my breast reduction?
- In some situations, breast reduction can be covered by your insurance. Your insurance will have many requirements in order for this to be approved. These requirements usually include several years of documented “conservative” treatments before electing to have surgery, such as rashes and skin irritations under or around the breasts, a large enough volume of tissue estimated to be removed, shoulder grooving, and/or back pain. Every insurance policy has different requirements. During your consultation, Dr. Behmand will determine if you meet most of these requirements, and we will then submit for authorization, prior to your surgery, with your insurance. This process can take 2-3 weeks or more.
- What does the incision look like for a breast reduction?
- The two main types of incisions used can look like either a lollipop or an anchor. The lollipop incision, also known as “vertical breast reduction,” goes around the areola and down the front of the breast. In most patients, this method is the ideal approach. Alternatively, an anchor-like incision may be used in breasts with greater drooping. This incision goes around the areola, down the lower front of the breast, and along the crease beneath the breast. These incisions typically are easily covered by your undergarments or bathing suit top.
- Can my breast reduction be combined with other procedures?
- Absolutely! A breast reduction can be combined with almost any other procedure. Some patients prefer to have other procedures done at the same time to optimize the healing and recovery time. Many patients will frequently combine their breast reduction with an abdominoplasty or liposuction.
The Breast Reduction Procedure
Since the goal of reduction mammaplasty is to remove excess skin and tissue, more incisions are needed than for other breast surgery, such as augmentation. Dr. Behmand will create an incision that goes around the areola, down the lower front of the breast, and in cases of very large breasts, along the crease beneath the breast. After removing the desired amount of tissue, Dr. Behmand will tighten up and remove any excess skin, reposition the nipple to its new location, lift the breasts, and close the incisions.
As with any surgery, the scars from breast reduction will never go away completely; however, since they are located on the lower areas of the breasts you will be able to wear a variety of lingerie, swimsuits, or low-cut gowns typically with no scars showing at all.
After the Breast Reduction Procedure
Immediately after surgery, you will be asked to spend at least one to two weeks to recover in the comfort of your home. During this time, it is important that you rest and minimize your arm movements as much as possible. You will be given post-operative instructions prior to surgery, and it is crucial that you follow these instructions.
Most patients can return to normal, non-strenuous daily activities after one to two weeks. For more strenuous activities, such as exercise, it is important to wait at least 6 weeks or until given clearance by Dr. Behmand.
To schedule a consultation with Dr. Behmand regarding breast reduction, please contact our office today. This procedure is an opportunity to relieve long standing pain and discomfort as well as pursue new activities and clothing styles.