Breast reduction is one of the most common breast plastic surgery procedures in Australia. It is an operation that aims to:
- Reduce the size and weight of the breasts
- Reduce or improve the size and appearance of the nipple and areola.
- Improve the overall appearance of the breasts.
Heavy breasts can lead to debilitating problems such as neck and back pain, posture problems and skin rashes in summer. It can also interfere with everyday life particularly with sport activities or cloth fitting.
In general, breast reduction surgery is a safe and effective procedure with a high level of patient satisfaction.
What’s the difference between a traditional and short scar breast reduction?
- Planning the most appropriate surgical technique takes into account the existing breast volume, cup size, nipple position and the desired size and shape of the breasts.
- The traditional breast reduction technique leaves a circular scar around the nipple and areola, with a vertical scar connecting this to a horizontal scar in the natural fold under the breast. This is sometimes known as an inverted “T” or “anchor” scar.
- Many patients, however, are suitable for a “short scar” or “vertical” breast reduction which eliminating (or reduces) the horizontal scar beneath the breast. Not everyone is suitable for this technique and there may be significant trade-offs especially in relation to the contour of the breast immediately after surgery.
Am I suitable for ‘short scar’ breast reduction?
- This would depend on you individual anatomy and what your goals area.
- Most patients aiming for moderate size reduction would be suitable for the short scar technique. There are some patients who may be more suited to traditional techniques, particularly those who require large volume reduction or where there is significant skin excess.
- As a general rule, the short scar technique generally leaves a small amount of skin redundancy or ‘pleating’ along the vertical scar of the breast. In almost all cases, however, this will settle over the first few months following surgery.
- Mr Lin will provide you with an in depth consultation with regards to your suitability for surgery as well as a realistic expectation of results. This often takes place over one or two consultations, allowing you time to process the information provided and to have all your questions addressed.
How is breast reduction surgery performed?
- Breast reduction surgery is performed under general anaesthesia.
- Operation time is typically 2-3 hours.
- During the operation, your safety is our main priority. In this regard, Mr Lin strictly adheres to the highest standards in surgical safety, which includes the use of antibiotics to prevent infection, and compressive stockings / blood thinning medications to prevent clots (DVTs).
- Sometimes, drain tubes may be used which are generally removed the following day.
- At the end of the operation you will be cared for in the post anaesthetic recovery area before being transferred to a specialist surgical ward.
What is the typical recovery following breast reduction surgery?
- Generally we would recommend 1-2 nights in hospital for your comfort and safety.
- We recommend a supportive garment, such as a crop top, for both comfort and support.
- Most women should plan for 2-3 weeks off work and 4-6 weeks of avoiding contact sports or heavy lifting.
- Mr Lin will see you within one week of discharge to check on your recovery and the wound healing.
- Following this, a regular schedule of post-operative consultations will be provided by Mr Lin and his staff.
How do I care for the surgical scars following breast reduction surgery?
- Scar management is an integral part of the recovery process following any surgery.
- Physical therapies is the first, and arguably the most important, step in helping scars mature and fade.
- As a part of our commitment to the highest quality surgery and after-care, we provide a specialist scar management consultation with our in-house dermal therapist, who will recommend a treatment regimen that is tailored to your individual skin type.
*Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding, you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.