Certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery
If you are a woman with large, pendulous breasts, breast reduction surgery can give you far more than just a smaller, firmer bustline. You can discover a new sense of freedom in your physical activities and find relief from many physical and emotional discomforts. And you'll finally be able to wear many clothing styles you've always dreamed of wearing. Of all plastic surgery procedures, breast reduction rates among the highest in patient satisfaction.
See our before and after photo gallery for examples.
Is breast reduction right for you?
You may be a good candidate for breast reduction surgery if:
- You suffer from back and neck pain due to the weight of
- Your breasts are too large in proportion to your body frame
- You have heavy, sagging breasts with very low nipples
- Your breasts restrict your activities, such as running
- Your bra straps leave painful indentations in your shoulders
- One breast is much larger than the other
- Your heavy breasts make you feel self-conscious
- The heaviness of your breasts has caused skin irritation, skeletal deformities or breathing problems
- You are mature enough to fully understand the breast reduction procedure and have realistic expectations about the results
You may not be a good candidate
for breast reduction if you:
- Are pregnant or nursing
- Intend to breastfeed in the future
- Have breast cancer, breast disease or other health issues
- Are planning to lose weight
When is the right time for breast reduction surgery?
Breast reduction can be done at any age after your breasts have stopped developing.
What if you plan to have children?
Childbirth and breastfeeding may affect the size and shape of your breasts. If you plan to breastfeed in the future, you should discuss this with Dr. Parungao.
How does breast reduction surgery work?
Breast reduction, or reduction mammoplasty, is a procedure that brings your breasts into better proportion with the rest of your body by removing fat, excess breast tissue and skin. Result: Your breasts will be smaller, lighter and firmer. The areola, or darker skin around the nipple, may be reduced and repositioned as well.
How is breast reduction surgery performed?
Dr. Parungao usually performs breast reduction surgery on an outpatient basis using general anesthesia. The surgery typically lasts 2-4 hours.
The breast-reduction technique Dr. Parungao uses involves two incisions:
- One incision is made around the areola (the dark tissue surrounding the nipple).
- The second is a horizontal incision beneath the breast that follows the natural curve of the breast crease.
After Dr. Parungao has removed the excess breast tissue, fat and skin, the nipple and areola are shifted to a higher position. The areola, which is usually larger than ideal, is also reduced in size. Skin that was formerly located above the areola is brought down and together to reshape the breast. In some cases, liposuction may be used to improve the contour, especially on the sides of the breasts.
The nipples and areola remain attached to the underlying mounds of tissue, allowing for the preservation of sensation. This method may also preserve the ability to breastfeed, although it is not guaranteed.
If you need only fat removed from your breasts, liposuction alone can be used to reduce your breast size, leaving minimal scars.
How fast is the healing process?
Although everyone heals at a different rate, you can expect that your recovery will follow this general time line:
Within the first week
- You will begin to move about more comfortably and perhaps even return to (non-strenuous) work.
- Surgical drains will be removed and dressings will be changed.
After several weeks
- Bruising, swelling, and normal periodic discomfort will diminish.
- You can discontinue wearing a surgical support bra.
- Sensation in the nipple and areola area will gradually improve.
- You may return to most of your normal activities, including mild exercise.
After a few months
- Your breasts will start settling into a more natural shape.
- Incision lines will begin to fade.
- If you haven't felt it sooner, you will notice relief from neck, back and shoulder pain.
What results can you expect from breast reduction?
Without the excessive weight of large breasts, you may find you enjoy life more. Your body will look better proportioned, clothes will fit you better and you'll have greater freedom to enjoy physical activities.
Although the incision lines will be permanently visible, they will fade over time and can be easily concealed under clothing—even most swimsuits and low-cut tops.
Breast reduction typically makes a dramatic change in your body image, and it may take some time to adjust to your new appearance. However, most women soon become comfortable with their smaller, more proportional breasts and feel very pleased with the results of surgery.
You can expect to maintain your new breast size unless you gain or lose a significant amount of weight or become pregnant. If, over time, the effects of gravity and aging cause your breasts to lose their shape or firmness, you may choose to undergo a cosmetic breast lift to help restore a more youthful contour.
Breast reduction FAQs
Q. Will insurance cover breast reduction surgery?
A. Some insurance companies will pay for breast reduction to relieve medical symptoms. However, coverage may depend on a significant amount of breast tissue being removed. Your insurance company may require a letter of predetermination before you have surgery. Dr. Parungao's office staff will be happy to help you with insurance matters related to this surgery. If you are seeking a purely cosmetic change in your breast size, you will be responsible for paying for the procedure yourself.
Q. Can my breasts ever get large again after breast reduction surgery?
A. Yes. Your breasts may enlarge due to pregnancy or weight gain.
Q. Is lifting of the breasts part of breast reduction?
A. Yes. Your breasts will be moved higher on your chest during breast reduction surgery, and your nipples will be repositioned higher as well.
Q. How much scarring does breast reduction involve?
A. Breast reduction surgery produces more noticeable scars than procedures such as breast augmentation. Fortunately, all the scarring will be at the level of the nipples and below, so you don't have to worry about the scars showing, even when you are wearing low-cut clothing.
Q. Can I breastfeed after having a breast reduction?
A. It's definitely not guaranteed. If you plan to breastfeed, you should wait to have breast reduction surgery until you are finished having children.
Newsletters related to “Breast reduction surgery, reduction mamoplasty, Chicago, IL”
Most breast reduction surgery can be covered by insurance - September 2010
950 grams per breast.
This information is merely an introduction to breast reduction surgery. Your next step is to schedule a personal consultation with Dr. Parungao, where he will evaluate you, listen to your goals for breast reduction, evaluate you and advise you on how you can best achieve the outcome you desire.
Questions? Call our office at 312.642.5252
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