One is the most frequently performed operations in plastic surgery is breast reduction, also known as reduction mammoplasty. Women with extremely large breasts often have symptoms affecting their activities of daily living. These can include back pain, shoulder pain from bra straps digging into their shoulders, rashes from skin irritation and tight bras, and upper neck upper back and neck discomfort and poor posture. Removal of excess breast tissue and fat and reshaping the breasts in general to bring the nipple and areola to a more aesthetically pleasing position generally results in improved ability to exercise, perform at normal activities, purchase clothing, and look more proportion to the rest of the body. Surgery to reduce breast should not be performed until approximately one year after completion of breastfeeding.
The Breast Reduction Procedure
Breast reduction is usually performed under general anesthesia as an outpatient procedure. Depending on the size of the breasts and the technique used it can take, on average, 2 to 5 hours. In general, the technique will leave scars either bullet around the (usually smaller) areola with:
- Two rings, one larger than the other, around the areola
- A keyhole shape, around the areola and down to the breast crease
- An anchor shape, beginning in the breast crease, and extending up to and around the areola
- A lollipop types scars with scars around the areola in the vertical incision down to the crease under the breast
- An inverted open “T” with the vertical portion of the T in the crease under the breast and the vertical portion extending from greased up to the nipple areola complex with a circle circular scar around the areola.
Liposuction alone is sometimes used to reduce your breast size. At times, liposuction alone may be all that is necessary. Although the advantage of liposuction is that it leaves a little to no scarring, it only removes fatty tissue and does not by itself hello for repositioning of the nipple areola complex and removing the excess skin.
Recovery From Breast Reduction
After breast reduction, patients generally have soreness swelling and bruising for several days. The bandages and post-operative bra may be removed, generally in the plastic surgeon’s office, within the first week or so after surgery. Physical activity is limited for several weeks and strenuous activity for at least 4 weeks. Stitches are often very tender absorbable although any left on the skin or removed after 2 or 3 weeks.
The results aren’t noticeable immediately, but over the first 6 months to a year following surgery, and swelling and bruising subside and gravity and normal healing take place, the breast appearance improves. Scars generally fade over time and usually cannot be seen when wearing swimsuit or low-cut top.
Risks Of Breast Reduction
In addition to the risks associated with any surgery, risks related to breast reduction, depending on the technique used, include the following:
- Loss of sensation
- Excessive firmness
- Inability to breast-feed
- Loss of skin/tissue where incisions meet
- Partial or total loss of the nipple and areola complex
- Delayed wound healing
Although breast reduction provides long-lasting results, breasts are still subject to the effects of aging and gravity.
Male Breast Reduction
Gynecomastia, which is the overdevelopment of male breasts, affects an estimated 40 to 60 percent of men. It can be the result of hormonal imbalance, obesity, certain drugs or heredity, and can affect one or both breasts.
Candidates for breast reduction are men who have large or sagging breasts that make them feel physically and/or emotionally uncomfortable. Breast reduction can be performed on men whose breast development is complete; are in good health, both physically and emotionally; do not smoke; and are not overweight. Ideally, candidates have firm, elastic skin that will reshape itself to fit the contours of their breasts postsurgery.
Male Breast Reduction Procedure
Male breast reduction is usually performed under general anesthesia on an outpatient and typically takes one to three hours. It can sometimes be performed using liposuction or liposuction alone, but in many cases it may be a combination of skin excision, breast excision, and liposuction.
If the breast enlargement is caused primarily by excess fatty tissue, the tissue might be removed with liposuction with a thin Hollow tube inserted through extremely small incisions and the fatty tissue being removed through suction through section. Incisions are generally in inconspicuous areas around the lower portions of the breast, at the border of the areola and more likely colored skin or in the underarms.
If breast enlargement is caused by excess tissue, direct excision is generally required with incisions in order for the tissue to be removed. Often, the nipples/areolas may be re-positioned by excising excess skin. Stitches are used closing incisions. They may be buried and absorbable. Sometimes they may be on the skin and and those cases are removed approximately two weeks after surgery.
Recovery From Male Breast Reduction Surgery
Following gynecomastia surgery, there is bruising swelling and discomfort which usually dissipates after few days. Pain medication is prescribed as needed. At times, a compression garment may be recommended for several weeks.
Progressive patients are generally told to remain at light activities for the first one to two weeks and to avoid strenuous activities for 4 to 6 weeks.
Risks Of Male Breast Reduction
In addition to the risks associated with surgery and anesthesia, those related to male breast reduction include the following:
- Asymmetrical breasts or position of the nipples
- Asymmetric size of the areolas
- Loss of skin
- Loss of sensation
The results of gynecomastia surgery are usually permanent if the patient’s weight remains stable. If the condition was the cause was caused by drugs, use of these drugs may lead to recurrent problems.