For many women, breast hypertrophy is not only an aesthetic issue but also a functional one. Degenerative spine disease with a chronic pain syndrome developed in the neck, shoulders and bac, recurring skin irritations and infections as well as limitation of motion are the main issues patients with breast hypertrophy face every day. It is believed that the main reasons include hormonal disturbances, obesity and genetic factors. The only effective form of therapy is the breast reduction procedure.
The procedure aims at breast reduction and shaping. There are many surgical techniques. However, all of them involve resection of excess skin and a fragment of the breast tissue as well as reduction and upward displacement of the nipple-areola complex. In case of a significant breast ptosis, it is necessary to displace the nipple-areola complex in the form of a graft which results in decreased sensation in its region. The surgery is performed under general anaesthesia.
The procedure is recommended for females with large breasts, especially in cases of concomitant neck, back and shoulder pain as well as recurring inflammatory fold.
During the consultation, I perform a physical examination, taking into account the degree of excess skin, its laxity, positioning and size of the nipple-areola complexes or volume of the breast tissue. On the basis of the examination results and after familiarisation with the patient's expectations and preferences, I present the available options to proceed with and the expected treatment results. When planning the target size of the breasts, the need to preserve proper body proportions must be considered.
After the procedure, the patient remains under care of qualified medical personnel. The patient is usually discharged on the next day. Tenderness, pain and sensation of distension often persist for several days. In this period, it is recommended to use the indicated pain relievers. Some patients experience sensation impairment in the nipple region. Nevertheless, it is transient and subsides after several months.
It is necessary to wear an elastic bra for at least 6-8 weeks. Massage of the breasts operated on is also recommended.
Office work can usually be resumed after ca. 2-3 weeks from the surgery. Cardio type sport activity can be resumed after ca. 4-6 weeks from the procedure. Whereas, returning to more intensive exercise, especially with additional load, is possible not sooner than after 3 months.
The shape and size of the skin scarring depends on the applied surgical method. The post-operative scar can be located only
around the areola or stretched downwards and cover or not the breast fold. Observance of post-operative indications regarding scare care allows to achieve its satisfying and aesthetic appearance over time.
The change in the breast appearance is noticeable already after the surgery but, due to persisting swelling and healing process, the end result is achieved after several dozen weeks from the procedure. The effect of the surgery is long-term, but does not eliminate the impact of the aging process, body mass fluctuations and hormonal changes on the appearance of breasts.
Breast reduction is not a contraindication for pregnancy. In most cases, breastfeeding is also possible. An exception is the necessity to transfer the nipple-areola complex in the form of a graft. When making decision on the procedure, the patient has to bear in mind that pregnancy and breastfeeding may result in change of appearance, including ptosis, of the breasts. Therefore, it is recommended for the woman to consider breast reduction after final family expansion. Otherwise, repeating the procedure might be necessary.