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Breast Reduction and Breast Lift Review: Choosing the Right Procedure for You

Published by Dr. Brandon Richland, MD

“Dr. Richland did an amazing breast reduction and breast lift. I never imagined I would have youthful, perky breasts again at age 75! My body not only looks better but feels better! My experience was flawless and the results are one of the highlights of my life. I’m eternally grateful to my extraordinary doctor and his wonderful Staff.”

Read the full Google Review here.

Understanding Breast Reduction and Breast Lift Surgery

Breast reduction and lift procedures aim to improve the appearance and reduce discomfort by altering breast size, shape, and elevation.

Anatomy of the Breast

The female breast consists of glands and ducts, collectively known as breast tissue, surrounded by fatty tissue and covered with skin. It is supported by ligaments and the chest muscles underneath.

What is Breast Reduction Surgery and Breast Lifts?

Breast Reduction: This surgical procedure, also known as a reduction mammoplasty, involves removing excess breast tissue, skin, and fat to decrease breast size for a more proportional body profile and relieve physical discomfort.

Breast Lift: Technically referred to as mastopexy, a breast lift reshapes and elevates the existing breast tissue by excising sagging, excess skin and tightening the surrounding tissue to enhance the breast contour and firmness.

Benefits of Breast Reduction and Lift

  • Reduction: Eases back and neck pain, skin irritation, and the physical limitations often associated with overly large breasts.
  • Lift: Elevates the position of the breasts on the chest wall, creating a more youthful and aesthetically pleasing profile.

Candidates for the Procedures

Ideal candidates for breast reduction are those experiencing physical discomfort or seeking relief from the psychological distress associated with large, pendulous breasts. Breast lift candidates are typically individuals with sagging breasts due to age, pregnancy, or significant weight loss. Both procedures may involve breast augmentation recovery.

For those considering enhancing their breast appearance through either procedure, breast augmentation before and after images can offer insight into potential results.

The Surgical Procedures

Breast surgery procedures require careful planning and precision to ensure successful outcomes. The surgical techniques for breast reduction and breast lift address different concerns but share the focus on aesthetics and alleviating any discomfort due to enlarged or sagging breasts.

Preparation for Surgery

Prior to surgery, patients undergo a thorough evaluation to determine the best course of action. This includes discussing (medical history, medications, and expected outcomes). Pre-operative instructions may involve refraining from smoking and avoiding certain medications. Anesthesia options, such as intravenous sedation or general anesthesia, will be recommended based on the individual’s needs.

Breast Reduction Techniques

Breast reduction, or reduction mammaplasty, involves the removal of excess fat, skin, and breast tissue to alleviate discomfort and achieve a breast size proportionate to the body. Techniques often involve incisions around the areola and sometimes vertically down the breast and along the breast crease. Liposuction may also be employed to remove excess fat. 

Learn more about breast surgery costs and considerations.

Breast Lift Techniques

A breast lift, or mastopexy, repositions the breast tissue and nipple to a more youthful height, often involving incisions around the areola and possibly down the breast to reshape the breast tissue. Scars from the incisions are an expected part of the surgery, which will be strategically placed to minimize visibility. There are nuances of breast augmentation, breast lifts, and breast reduction surgeries.

Recovery and Aftercare

Post-operative care is crucial for both breast reduction and breast lift procedures. Recovery typically involves wearing a support garment, managing swelling with ice, and closely monitoring for signs of infection. Patients may also receive specific instructions regarding care of incisions to minimize scarring and promote healing. It’s important to follow all post-surgery recommendations to reduce the risk of complications like numbness or changes in nipple sensation. 

Each procedure aims to enhance breast appearance and improve quality of life, with breast reduction focusing on reducing physical discomfort and breast lift addressing sagging and shape. It’s important to discuss all risks and expectations with a plastic surgeon before deciding on surgery.

Important Considerations

Before undergoing breast reduction or breast lift surgery, it’s crucial to understand the potential risks and implications, including the physical, emotional, and financial aspects of breast surgery.

Risks and Potential Complications

Breast Reduction and Breast Lift Risks:

  • Scarring: Possible permanent scars; their extent varies by individual and surgical technique.
  • Bleeding and Infection: Although rare, these are potential risks of any major surgery.
  • Breastfeeding: Surgery may affect the ability to breastfeed in some cases.
  • Sensation: Changes in nipple or breast sensation may occur, sometimes temporarily.
  • Contour Irregularities: Slight asymmetries in the shape of the breasts and nipples may result.

Additional potential complications, such as delayed healing, should be discussed with a board-certified plastic surgeon to ensure a clear understanding of what breast surgery entails.

Cost, Insurance, and Making a Decision

Cost and Insurance:

  • Cost: Breast reduction and lift are major surgeries that can be costly; expenses include the surgeon’s fee, anesthesia, operating room facilities, and more.
  • Insurance: Some insurance plans cover breast reduction if medically necessary to alleviate symptoms like back pain or discomfort.

Making a Decision:

Considerations should include:

  • Goals: Clear understanding of what the surgery can achieve.
  • Benefits: Relief from discomfort and improved self-image.
  • Choosing a Surgeon: Ensure the surgeon is board-certified and experienced in breast surgeries.
  • Post-Surgery: Preparedness for the recovery period, postoperative appointments, and following the surgeon’s instructions, including wearing a surgical bra and managing pain with appropriate medication.

Informed decisions require a balance between understanding the benefits, such as weight loss and alleviated back pain, and the risks and costs involved. A consultation with a board-certified plastic surgeon is essential for personalized advice.

Schedule Your First-Class Cosmetic Consultation with Dr. Brandon Richland, MD

Contact Dr. Richland today by visiting RichlandMD.com, scheduling a cosmetic consultation, or by calling 714-844-0398 or 949-997-2958 directly.

Cover Image Illustration by: Dr. Brandon Richland, MD