Introduction to Breast Reduction
Breast reduction is a major surgery that can have incredible results. Designed to enhance self-esteem and relieve the physical symptoms that often come with large breasts, this procedure has been performed for decades by our experienced consultant plastic surgeons, delivering fantastic results each time.
Who is suitable?
Many of our patients come to us as they are unhappy about the size of their breasts. A large chest can often be a source of embarrassment or in some cases physical back, neck or shoulder pain; all of which can be easily alleviated by surgical reduction. In order to ensure your health and happiness, we require all of our patients to be medically fit and psychologically stable.
Before your breast reduction surgery
Here at Sthetix, we like to get to know you and your aims and expectations to ensure that we can work together to achieve realistic results. Before booking the surgery, we will arrange a consultation with an experienced consultant plastic surgeon so that you are fully informed about the procedure and what to expect.
Before surgery we ask that all patients stop smoking; this is because smoking introduces toxins into the blood, which increases the risk of healing problems, nipple and skin loss as well as anaesthetic complications. It’s therefore essential that smokers stop well before the surgery date (at least 6 weeks) and don’t start again until their wounds have completely healed.
We also ask that patients stop taking oral contraceptive pills (alternative methods are fine), aspirin or anti-inflammatory drugs as they increase the risk of bleeding. In addition, we also ask patients to stop taking off the shelf herbal medicines or nutrition supplements.
Before operating, we will arrange a medical examination (pre-operative assessment) where certain tests may be carried out to ensure your safety during anaesthesia and surgery. We may also ask you to have a mammogram prior to this surgery.
The procedure and risks
You will be under general anaesthetic (you are asleep) during the operation. It takes approximately 2 to 3 hours and requires an overnight hospital stay.
During the surgery, your surgeon will remove excess fat, skin and tissue from the breast. The incision lines are very discreet and there will be an anchor shaped scar running around the areola (the coloured skin around the nipple), down to and along the infra-mammary fold (crease line under the breast). We may leave in tubes to drain any excess fluids after the surgery but they are removed before you go home.
As breast reduction is a major operation, some bleeding, bruising, swelling and discomfort is inevitable after the operation. You can also expect scars on the breast after this procedure. Patients are most commonly dissatisfied if what they imagined does not line up with their results and for this reason, we always talk you through what is realistically and safely achievable. We can only estimate the specific size outcome and cannot guarantee a certain cup size.
Potential risks include: infection, haematoma, delayed healing, fatty lumps, prolonged pain, loss of sensation, asymmetry, loss of skin or nipple areola, DVT (deep vein thrombosis) and PE (pulmonary embolism). Although breast shape and size can be altered and improved with this procedure, after surgery the position, shape and size of the breast will continue to change over time as a result of gravity, weight changes and ageing.
As your wellbeing is our number one priority we offer a comprehensive and personalised aftercare package, all included in your treatment.
After you are discharged, will we give you post-operative care instructions and you will have 24-hour access to trained staff who will be on hand to advise you should you have any questions or concerns.
After the surgery, we will arrange appointments for follow-up examinations with your surgeon to monitor your progress and check that you are recovering well (it usually takes 3-4 weeks to recover and heal from this procedure).
2 weeks after surgery, one of our trained staff will see you and check your wounds. Your surgeon will see you after 6 weeks for a follow-up and again after that until you are fully recovered. These follow-ups are standard and will be provided at no extra cost.
In the unlikely event of a problem, we will make arrangements for you to be seen by trained staff and (if needed), by the surgeon who performed the procedure. As all our surgeons live and work in the local area, it is possible to see your surgeon at relatively short notice. Our surgeons don’t leave the country or the local area after performing the surgery. If, on a rare occasion, a surgeon leaves the local area for other commitments, we will ensure that there will always be another trained plastic surgeon from our team available to provide you with comprehensive care.
In the unlikely event of a complication directly related to your surgery, we will provide or arrange further surgery and/or treatment at no extra cost for up to 1 year.
Will I have scars?
Yes but the scars will be as discreet as possible; you can expect an anchor shaped scar running around the areola (the coloured skin around the nipple), down to and along the crease line under the breast.
When can I go back to work?
The recovery period varies but we recommend you take at least 2 to 3 weeks off work.
When can I drive a car?
We recommend that you don’t drive for at least 2 weeks after this procedure.
When can I exercise?
Mild activity (such as short walks) are fine as soon as you are comfortable. Vigorous exercise should be avoided in the early weeks after the surgery.
Can I breast feed?
In most cases, breastfeeding is possible after breast reduction. However it’s important to note that generally in the population, some women are naturally unable to breastfeed. We recommend that you discuss this further with your surgeon during the consultation stage.