Breast reduction surgery is performed primarily to alter the size and volume of the breast whilst lifting the breast and adjusting the overall shape.
Women with large breasts may suffer from physical and psychosocial discomfort due to the weight and position of large breasts. This may include neck and back pain, painful shoulder indentation from their bra straps, skin irritation underneath the breast, and difficulty finding well-fitting clothes, undergarments, and swimwear. Breast reduction surgery may help to improve these physical and lifestyle factors.
Dr Taylor will conduct a thorough preoperative assessment and discuss surgery’s potential risks and benefits and all the considerations relevant to your unique situation.
Breast reduction surgery is appropriate for any woman experiencing upper back and neck pain, rashes under the breasts, bra strap indentation, and general difficulty managing life with breasts that are too large for their shape. However, like any significant surgical procedure, being as healthy as possible is crucial. Being overweight and smoking increases the risk of complications for breast reduction surgery. As always with surgery, nutrition is essential, so patients must follow a healthy diet and ideally participate in regular exercise.
Breast reduction surgery is performed in an accredited hospital under general anaesthetic.
The surgery takes approximately 3hrs and involves an overnight stay. The breast volume is reduced, during the surgery and excess skin is removed. The breast mound and nipple are repositioned to achieve a well-proportioned and positioned breast on the chest wall. Dr Taylor uses a technique that minimises the wound and scar burden whilst creating a natural and attractive shape. This can be achieved in most patients via a short scar or “lollipop” incision instead of the more commonly used “anchor” scar.
Risks and Complications
All surgery causes side effects such as bruising, swelling, oozing or bleeding from wounds, new scars, infection and wound healing problems. General anaesthesia carries a risk of wound infection and wound healing problems. Risks associated with known anaesthesia include cardiac/respiratory issues and DVT.
Some risks and complications specific to breast reduction surgery include:
- Postoperative bleeding requiring a return to theatre
- Nipple-areola complex changes
- Changes in sensation which may be temporary or permanent
- Rarely poor healing or loss (necrosis) of part or all of the nipple
- Change in shape and size of the nipple-areola complex
- Seroma – accumulation of fluid within the breast which may become infected
- Small lumps due to fat necrosis
- Wound infection, which may require antibiotics, ongoing dressings and occasionally surgical management
- Poor scarring, including hypertrophic and keloid scars
- The ability to breastfeed may be affected
- Need for revision surgery