Women with large breasts who are unhappy with their appearance and/or want to treat symptoms such as back pain, breathing problems and poor posture may benefit from breast reduction surgery. This procedure removes fat and glandular tissue from the breast, while tightening skin to produce smaller breasts that are more comfortable and in healthier proportion to the rest of the body.
In addition to physical pain and other symptoms, large breasts may also draw unwanted attention that can affect a woman’s self-esteem and make her uncomfortable with her appearance. Breast reduction can help patients regain confidence and enjoy a renewed self-image by creating a body contour they are proud of. Prior to your procedure, Dr. Kurtzman will meet with you to discuss your goals and expectations for surgery; and will inform you of the details of your chosen procedure. This discussion is important in helping patients achieve the precise results they desire. Each procedure is fully customized for each individual patient.
Ideal candidates for breast reduction surgery are women with oversized breasts that cause medical problems, low self-esteem, physical or social discomfort, or frustrations with the size of their breast. Women must not be pregnant or breastfeeding while undergoing this procedure. It is important for patients to understand the details and risks associated with this procedure and to have realistic expectations in order to be satisfied with the results of their surgery.
The breast reduction procedure is performed under general anesthesia and takes about two to four hours, depending on the techniques used and each patient’s individual case. The following are several different types of surgical incisions which Dr. Kurtzman will determine after evaluating your breasts:
Traditional Breast Reduction Surgery: This technique involves an anchor-shaped incision and is ideal for women with extremely large breasts, although scarring is usually more apparent. Skin, fat and tissue can be removed from the lower breast and the nipples and areolas may be repositioned.
Vertical Incision Breast Reduction: Known as short-scar, this technique involves incisions that extend around the areola and down to the breast crease for a lollipop shape. Vertical incision is ideal for women with moderately large breasts and creates shapelier results with less scarring for women who do not require extensive tissue removal.
Scar-less breast reduction: Liposuction techniques are used to reduce the size of the breast with little to no scarring. Since liposuction only removes fatty tissue in the breast, patients should have more fatty tissue than glandular tissue. This technique is also commonly used on men with enlarged breasts.
After the breast reduction procedure, patients will likely experience soreness, swelling and bruising for several days. Bandages are removed after two days and replaced with a surgical bra. Physical activity should be limited for one to two weeks, while exercise and other strenuous activity should be avoided for at least four weeks.
Patients will return to the doctor to have stitches removed after approximately two to three weeks, at which time most patients are able to return to work and other regular activities. It is important to see Dr. Kurtzman for regular follow-up visits to ensure that your breasts are healing properly. The results of the breast reduction procedure are noticeable immediately after surgery and will continue to improve as swelling and bruising subside. Scars will continue to fade with time and can usually be concealed by a bra, bathing suit or low-cut top.
Although breast reduction is considered safe for most patients, there are certain risks associated with any surgical procedure. Some of these risks may include loss of sensation, scarring and asymmetry. There are also general surgical risks such as infection, bleeding and reaction to anesthesia. However, most patients undergo this procedure with no serious complications. Dr. Kurtzman will discuss the risks with you prior to surgery and will answer any questions you may have about your procedure.