5 Things You Should Know If You’re Considering Breast Reduction

Patients are often curious about what to know before having a breast reduction. Our Vancouver area practice believes that this surgery can be beneficial for many patients. Breast reduction involves reducing the size and weight of the breasts to make them smaller. Some individuals choose to undergo breast reduction for cosmetic reasons, such as wanting lighter breasts that are more proportionate to their body while others may want relief from physical discomfort caused by very large breasts. Breast reduction is often recommended for women who are experiencing problems such as feelings of self-consciousness or embarrassment, pain in the neck, shoulders, or back, headaches, deep bra grooves on their shoulders, rashes or skin infections, posture problems, and challenges with finding clothing that fits properly or participating in physical activities. Regardless of your reason for wanting this surgery, it can be helpful to know what to expect.

  1. It Will Be Difficult to Predict Your Eventual Cup Size

Although you may have an idea of what you want to look like and what you hope your new cup size will be, it can be difficult to predict this, and you won't necessarily go down alphabetically. The priority should be achieving symmetrical, balanced new breasts that complement your body shape, regardless of cup size.

  1. You Won't Be Able to Exercise for a While

It's best to work out when your body feels ready; don't assume you can handle a trip to the gym right away even after you've healed. Even when you're ready to exercise again, it can take some time to get used to, especially if you haven't been active for a while due to large breasts. The great thing is that it can feel incredible to get back to activities you used to enjoy.

  1. You'll Feel Better Right Away

Patients will instantly feel lighter after skin and fat have been removed from the chest. Furthermore, some believe this surgery can provide relief from emotional strain as well.

  1. You Might Go Down a Shirt Size or More

Shopping for clothes that fit you can be challenging if you have large breasts, even if you're in great shape otherwise. It's likely that you'll go down at least one shirt size, and your body shape will look more proportional after breast reduction.

  1. Recovery Is Important

You might not think much about how much downtime you'll need for this procedure, but the truth is the recovery time is different for everyone. Give yourself enough time before you go back to your normal activities.

For more advice on what to know before having a breast reduction, contact our Vancouver area-based team at the office of Dr. Owen Reid. Call us at 604-343-9309 or submit a contact form to schedule a consultation.

Can A Breast Reduction Provide Relief for Back Pain?

If your poor posture and back pain are caused by large breasts, a breast reduction from our Vancouver area practice is a safe and effective method to get relief for the discomfort. In fact, many believe that a breast reduction is the only permanent way of relieving certain types of back pain. Many patients combine a breast lift, which involves elevating the breasts to a higher position on the chest to make them perkier, with a breast reduction, to maximize results.

Although upper back pain can also be a result of other factors such as heavy exercise, bad posture, or injuries, large breasts are one of the most frequent causes of pain in the back, shoulders, and neck. This discomfort occurs due to changes in the center of gravity and an abnormal body alignment when large breasts pull the upper body forward, leading to constant tension in the muscles of the upper back and a strain on the ligaments. The excess weight of the breasts is the main cause of the problem, as there may not be enough support from the surrounding muscles, the rib cage, and the rest of the body.

For example, D-Cup breasts would be between sixteen to twenty-four extra pounds that are being carried on the chest. Additionally, large breasts can make it challenging to maintain good posture because it isn’t easy to hold them up, making you more likely to hunch over. Many women may also be self-conscious about large breasts and slouch forward, making the pain worse. This long-term, chronic pain may not only make daily tasks difficult but also have a negative impact on quality of life.

Breast reduction has one of the highest satisfaction rates out of all plastic surgery procedures for good reason. In breast reduction surgery, excess fat, tissue, and skin are removed to make the breasts smaller, then they are reshaped to be more proportional with the patient’s weight and frame. Research has shown that the reduction in back pain is linked to lifting the breasts in addition to removing the extra weight.

For more details about the benefits of a breast reduction, contact our Vancouver area office of Dr. Owen Reid. Call us at 604-343-9309 or submit a contact form to request a consultation to discuss breast reduction surgery and determine what’s the most appropriate surgical option for you.

Breast Reduction Techniques

If you said that there was a different breast reduction technique for every practicing plastic surgeon you wouldn't be far from the truth. Although it's common for each surgeon to have their own innovative surgical tips, the vast majority of surgeons are using a personalized variation of a common technique.

Breast reduction techniques are most commonly classified by their scar pattern, and the two most common patterns are the Vertical Scar Technique and the Inverted "T" or Anchor Technique. However, this is only half the story. Arguably, the more important part of a successful breast reduction is what goes on under the skin, within the breast tissue itself, and the scar pattern doesn't tell us anything about how the surgeon handles this part of the operation. For example, Dr. Reid has to make decisions about which parts of the breast will be preserved, which parts will be resected and how to re-configure the breast to achieve the best possible shape. These variables are all independent of the  scar pattern.

What technique does Dr. Reid use?

Dr. Reid uses the technique that best suits the patient; there is no one best technique nor would it be appropriate to use the same technique for each patient. Breast shape is highly variable and so a surgeon requires expertise with more than one technique and should also be able to adapt these techniques as needed to breasts with varying characteristics.

So will I get the Vertical Scar or the Inverted "T" Scar pattern?

In breast and body contouring surgery, a plastic surgeon chooses to place a scar or lengthen a scar in order to achieve better contour and shape. This holds true for breast reduction surgery. Dr. Reid uses both patterns and although it's always nice to limit scar length, he finds the Inverted "T" scar pattern to be very helpful for those patients who have significant breast ptosis (droop) and skin laxity. In this situation, the 'additional' scar, concealed along the infra-mammary fold, allows Dr. Reid more control over breast size, shape and position. In contrast, those patients who have large breasts without significant ptosis are typically good candidates for the vertical scar technique.

Dr. Owen Reid commonly performs breast reduction surgeries in Vancouver, Richmond and Delta. For more information or to book a consultation, please contact our office at 604-273-1034.