Sunday, 25 October 2015

When Less is More: Everything You Need to Know About Breast Reduction Surgery



So many women dream of having larger breasts, that we often have little sympathy for those bothered by a chest that’s too ample.

Although they might seem lucky to have natural curves, having big boobs is sometimes more of a curse than a blessing. In addition to causing back, neck and shoulder pain, large breasts can make exercise difficult or uncomfortable, cause poor posture and skin irritations beneath the breast.

In addition, the weight of large breasts can cause them to sag and make the nipples point downwards – a condition that’s often advanced by pregnancy, weight loss and ageing.

Here at Ocean Clinic Marbella, we often speak to patients who feel very self-conscious about their large breasts. They frequently tell us that they do not feel confident about getting undressed or being seen in swimwear and they have problems finding flattering clothing.

Having a breast reduction can give women a feeling of freedom and confidence like they've never known before. Read on to find out more about this life changing surgery…

How is breast reduction surgery performed?


A Breast reduction (also called reduction mammoplasty) is usually performed in one of two ways:

The Lejour

This technique involves making an incision vertically from the base of the breast, up to and around the nipple (it mimics the shape of a lollypop). We use this technique for moderately heavy breasts.


Hall-Findlay

This technique uses three incisions; one around the areola, another running vertically from the nipple to the breast crease, and the third following the natural curve of the breast crease (it mimics the shape of an anchor). This technique is suitable for very heavy breasts or those with pronounced sagging.

With both techniques, the surgeon then removes excess breast tissue, fat and skin and reshapes the breast. The nipple and areola are moved to a higher position, and reduced in size to suit the new breast dimensions.

If the patient has one breast larger than the other, the asymmetry will be corrected. Liposuction is also sometimes employed to shape and sculpt the breast.

The whole procedure takes between two to four hours, depending on how extensive it is.

Are there any side effects from breast reduction surgery?


In some cases, where breasts are greatly reduced in size, it might not be possible to breastfeed afterwards. This is because the nipples and areolas may need to be completely detached before they are shifted to a higher level.

Usually, the nipples and areolas remain attached to underlying mounds of tissue, however, even if this is the case, the ability to breastfeed is not guaranteed.

It is also important to note that pregnancy and breastfeeding can result in a loss of breast tissue and skin stretching, which can change the shape of your breasts.

For these reasons we usually advise to postpone having breast reduction surgery until after you have had children, especially if you plan to breastfeed.

Breast reduction can also result in a loss of sensation to the breast or nipple, although this is rarely permanent.


How long is recovery?


After surgery you will stay overnight in one of our comfortable bedrooms. Depending on how extensive the surgery, you should be able to go home the following day.  

You will be given a special surgical bra to wear, which will help to support your breasts as they assume their new shape and should be worn for three weeks, day and night.

The stitches used are generally of the dissolvable variety, meaning you won’t have to return to have them removed. After two weeks you will be able to return to work, providing your job does not involve any heavy lifting or strenuous activity. You will be able to resume exercise after one month.

Your breasts will be swollen for a few weeks post surgery and this may give them a slightly unnatural appearance, but it will settle down. Scarring will be pink for a number of months but should eventually fade to become unnoticeable.

Are the results permanent?


Although breast reduction removes both glandular and fatty tissue, some fatty tissue will still remain. If you gain weight after the operation, your breasts may increase in size.

Similarly, if you lose weight, you should see a reduction in the size of the breasts which may be accompanied by sagging, depending on the extent of the decrease and the laxity of your skin.

You should tell your surgeon if you plan to lose a significant amount of weight, as you may be advised to stabilise your weight before having surgery.

For most people, however, the results of a breast reduction are permanent, giving them long-term relief from the pain, inconvenience and embarrassment that over-sized breasts can cause.

If you are considering breast reduction surgery, take a look at this video of Dr. Kaye, Head Surgeon of Ocean Clinic Marbella, carrying out the procedure. To book a consultation please call the clinic or fill out our contact form.

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