Breast reduction surgery, AKA reduction mammoplasty, is performed to help reduce the size of the breasts on a female patient. The procedure is performed by a plastic surgeon and the doctor makes incisions on the underside of the breasts in order to remove extra tissue, fat, and skin.
There are a number of reasons that female patients want to have breast reduction surgery at some point in their lives. For example, some women can have a negative self-image or simply feel self-conscious about the appearance of their overly large breasts. They might feel everyone is staring at them or judging them due to the size of their breasts.
Another reason is the sometimes painful physical symptoms that can occur due to the weight of the breasts and the physical strain it can place on areas of the body such as the back, neck, and shoulders. Overly large breasts can also cause poor posture and even make it difficult to take part in certain sporting activities or wear certain clothing.
The first step in the breast reduction process is the administering of anesthesia to the patient in order to keep the person comfortable during the surgery. Then, the surgeon creates an incision that begins at the areola (which is the area around the nipple that is pigmented). The incision will continue to go in a downwards direction to the underside of the breast.
Once the incision is created, the surgeon will remove the designated amount of skin and fatty tissue so the breast will be reduced in size. There are many times when the surgeon is able to leave the nipple in place. However, there are some patient cases where the nipple will need to be repositioned by the surgeon.
Once the pre-planned amount of fatty tissue and skin has been removed by the surgeon, the breasts will be wrapped in bandages made of gauze. The surgeon might need to attach drainage tubes to the breasts in order to remove excess fluids from the body during the recovery process. The bandages will need to stay in place until instructed otherwise by the surgeon.
It can take about a week for the patient to be able to wear a bra again. Once the person is able to wear a bra, it will need to be a special soft bra that will be worn for several weeks.
After the patient returns home following the surgery, they will need to be prepared to relax as they will need plenty of rest and downtime for proper recuperation. This includes not lifting anything over five pounds as heavy lifting can result in straining the muscles for several weeks after the surgery.
During the initial post-procedure recovery period, the breasts will be sore and even painful if someone tries to touch them. Pain medication should be able to help control the discomfort during the healing process. In addition, there is a chance of some common side effects including itching and a numb feeling.
The doctor will monitor the recovery process and will let the patient know when it is safe to resume normal daily activities including returning to work and exercising.
A breast reduction surgery has some risks involved in its performance including scarring, asymmetrical results in the appearance of the breasts, a decrease in the amount of sensation in the breasts or nipples, and problems with breast feeding in the future.
Each patient will not experience all of these risks and a person might not experience any of them. The doctor who will perform the surgery needs to discuss the possible risks with the patient so the person will have a better idea about the possibility of them occurring after the procedure.
The final results of breast reduction surgery include more than the physical and aesthetic changes to the breasts that are seen by the patient. Smaller breasts can give a person a more positive attitude about their appearance and make them feel more confident when interacting with others.
It can take some time to mentally adjust to the new appearance of the breasts and the person might also need to purchase new clothing to fit the improved shape and contour of the body. The new shape of the breasts will not be seen right away, and the final results do not appear overnight. It can take several months for any swelling to resolve on its own which means a person should not worry if the breasts do not have an immediate, smaller look to them. If the patient has any questions or concerns about the healing process of the breasts, they should contact the doctor who performed the surgery for advice and guidance.