What to Expect From Your Breast Reduction Surgery

While many women wish for bigger breasts, women who are large-busted know that it’s not always all that it’s cracked up to be. Larger breasts are heavier, which means that you often experience more back and shoulder pain just carrying their weight. 

Many women with large breasts, especially those who suffer from related pain, opt for a surgical procedure that reduces their breasts’ size. These breast reduction surgeries can make you look better proportioned and feel more confident about your body. However, the recovery from this procedure requires some special care. The providers at Advanced Plastic Surgery Center explain more about what you can expect after breast reduction surgery.

The ultimate outcome

Breast reduction surgery begins with your chosen breast size. Most women have a target cup size that they wish to be following the procedure, although this is not always attainable. The surgeon will help you choose the right size and shape so that your breasts are proportionate to your frame size.

However, it’s important to note that you may want to postpone breast reduction surgery if you have more than 25 to 30 pounds to lose. You only lose about two pounds of breast tissue in the procedure, though the effect on your appearance is often dramatic. But because losing more than 30 pounds can cause your breasts to “deflate” or sag, it’s best to try to lose weight before having the procedure.

What to expect from the procedure itself

Breast reduction surgery is an outpatient procedure, meaning that you can go home the same day after the anesthesia has worn off. During the procedure itself, the doctor will make incisions in each breast below the nipple and remove excess tissue. After removing the extra tissue, he will reposition your nipples so that they are correctly placed in proportion to the rest of your breasts.

One thing that many women sometimes find surprising is that breast reduction surgery also includes a breast lift. The weight of larger breasts means that you may be used to them sagging or even having nipples that point downward. During the breast reduction procedure, the process of repositioning your nipples lifts your breasts, making them perkier as well as lighter.

What to expect after you go home

Even though a breast reduction procedure allows you to go home after the anesthesia wears off, you should still expect a couple of weeks of recovery time. In the first week or two after surgery, you will experience a fair amount of pain and need assistance from someone else. 

You’ll likely be sent home with thin tubes inserted into your breast tissue to drain the blood and prevent infection. These surgical drains are temporary and will be removed within a couple of days. Your chest will also be wrapped in surgical dressings, again, to prevent infection. 

These surgical dressings will be removed at the same time that we remove the drains. You shouldn’t shower until after we remove the drains and dressings, usually on day 2-3 after the procedure.

You’ll also be given a special support bra to wear after the procedure. You should wear this at all times during the healing period and avoid wearing any bras with underwire at this time. 

Inspect your incisions at least once a day to make sure they don’t show any signs of redness, which could indicate infection. You should avoid lifting anything heavier than five pounds during the first two weeks after the procedure.

Even though you should avoid lifting anything heavier than five pounds during this period, you should still resume light physical activity as soon as possible. Exercise will help your body to recover more quickly.

Getting back to normal

You’ll generally be cleared to return to work two weeks after the surgery, though this may depend on what type of work you do. You’ll still be advised to avoid heavy lifting for about the first six weeks. You also may still experience some soreness two weeks after the procedure, though it will be much less than in the beginning.

Some women experience less nipple sensitivity after having a breast reduction, though in most cases, this goes away within a couple of months. Once the nerves in your breasts recover, your feeling of sensitivity should return.

Your insurance may cover your breast reduction surgery, especially if you’ve previously visited the doctor with complaints about back or neck pain or skin issues on or under your breasts. 

Once you’ve recovered from the breast reduction procedure, you’re likely to wonder why you waited so long to have it done. You’ll enjoy both the freedom from pain and the self-confidence boost of having a more well-proportioned figure. If you’re interested in breast reduction surgery, talk to us. We would love to answer any questions you might have. To schedule a consultation, call our office or request an appointment online

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