Excessively large breasts, also called macromastia, are commonly associated with chronic pain symptoms involving the back, shoulders, neck, and even the breasts themselves. The standing and sitting postures are often affected and the shoulders tend to become thick and rounded. Groove skin develops in the shoulders from the longstanding pulling pressure of the bra straps. Chronic rashes can develop in the area of the lower breast folds called intertriginous rashes that result from the chronic rubbing between the skin surfaces. Other possible symptoms are frequent muscle tension headaches and even tingling and numbness sensations in the fingers. Over time, degenerative arthritis of the spine can develop with worsening of the pain and posture.
Cosmetic & Theraputic Benefits
Reduction mammoplasty is a procedure which reduces the size of the breast and raises the breast higher on the chest. By accomplishing both of these objectives, the excessive pull on the upper trunk, spine, and shoulders is reduced markedly thereby decreasing and often eliminating the chronic pain symptoms. In addition to the therapeutic benefit of reduction mammoplasty, there is the cosmetic benefit of a more aesthetic and youthful appearance of the breast.
In most cases, if not for a history of chronic pain symptoms associated with macromastia is documented to establish medical necessity, the medical insurance companies will authorize the procedure as a covered benefit.
Breast Reduction Scar
Breast reduction creates scars on the breast, which are permanent, but normally fade with time. Like most scars, about a year is required to reach the best appearance. The shape of the breast will change and improve during the initial 6 months after the surgery to achieve a more natural appearance.
The scars are located as a circle around the border of the nipple – areola with a vertical scar extending to the fold below the breast. Depending on the specific reduction technique used, a horizontal scar may be located in the fold or there may be only a vertical scar. The size of the areola is generally reduced to approximately one and three quarters inch diameter.
Surgery at a Glance
The surgery is usually done as an outpatient procedure under general anesthesia, although occasionally patients are admitted for an overnight stay. A soft rubber drain is used on each side, which is easily removed in the office in two to four days after the surgery. The discomfort level reported by most patients is less than they anticipated and readily controlled with oral narcotic pain medications. Most women desire a reduction of the breast down to the C cup range. Most patients can return to work in 7 to 10 days if their job is not physically strenuous or in two to three weeks for more physical jobs.
A Life Changing Reduction
“I have found over the past 20 years of doing breast reduction surgery that a very high percentage of women who have the procedure are extremely happy they had it done. Very often, their only regret is that they did not have it done earlier in life.” ~ Patient Testimonial