Is Breast Reduction Surgery Right For You?

There are several factors that can affect your breast size, like your genetics, weight, workout routine, and more. While defined and voluptuous breasts are often desired, disproportionately large breasts can cause a lot of physical and mental distress for patients.

A procedure known as breast reduction, or reduction mammaplasty, is a cosmetic plastic surgery that can help individuals achieve a breast size that is more in line with the proportions of their body.

If you’ve been thinking about going through with a breast reduction procedure, here is everything you need to know.

Good Candidates for Breast Reduction

Having large breasts can actually have impairments on your physical health. For one, it can make it difficult to lead an active life. Plus, it can cause discomfort in the back, neck, and shoulders due to their weight, while also causing irritation beneath the breast crease.

Additionally, emotional distress associated with self-image issues and the inability to wear certain articles of clothing can have its own set of stress and negative impacts.

With this in mind, breast reduction may be right for you if:

  • You’re unhappy with the size of your breasts.

  • The size of breasts causes you physical or emotional discomfort.

  • Your breasts limit your physical activity.

  • You experience body aches and pains because of the size of your breasts.

  • You have a clear, positive goal with realistic expectations.

  • You are physically healthy.

  • You are a nonsmoker.

  • Your breasts are fully developed (not required, but often preferred).

Breast Reduction Procedure

If you’re a good candidate for breast reduction, you may feel many different emotions before getting the procedure done. It’s probably a mix of excitement, relief, anxiety, and fear. 

Regardless of how you feel, let’s walk you through the process so you can have a clear picture of what to expect on the day of your surgery.


Before you can get a breast reduction surgery, you will need to meet with a plastic surgeon for an initial consultation. This is where the surgeon will determine if a breast reduction surgery is right for you.

Be prepared to answer a few questions about why you want the procedure and what you’re hoping to get out of it. Additionally, you’ll be asked about medical history, allergies to medications, and family history of breast cancer or results of previous biopsies. It’s important to be honest at this stage so the surgeon can best assist you in safely achieving your desired look.

Next, the surgeon will evaluate your general health and take some detailed measurements of your breasts. This is to ensure that your skin elasticity remains intact following the surgery.

The consultation period is the time to ask any and all questions that you might have. It’s important to feel comfortable with your decision to move forward before you actually do. Your plastic surgeon is there to help you address any concerns and hesitations.


The specific technique to reduce your breast size will be determined by your surgeon. However, it is usually performed by making incisions on the breasts and surgically removing fat, tissue, and skin.

First, you’ll be sedated through either general anesthesia or intravenous sedation, or an IV, to help you remain comfortable throughout the procedure. Your surgeon will help you decide what the best course of action may be.

Next, the doctor will make an incision on your breast to allow for removal of fat and tissue. 

There are a few different types of incisions they may make:

  • Circular pattern around the areola, or area around the nipple. This is meant for patients who only need a slight reduction in breast size, as the scarring is minimal.

  • Keyhole shape around the areola and vertically down the breast crease. This is common for individuals who need a moderate reduction in breast size.

  • Inverted T with an incision around the areola, one down the breast crease, and one along the crease underneath the breast. This incision allows for maximum tissue removal, so it’s most common for patients that require a larger reduction.

No matter which incision is used, the nipple remains tethered to its original blood and nerve supply. However, it is repositioned to wherever need be. The tissue can be reduced, lifted, and shaped to match you and the surgeon’s ideals. Then, the incisions are brought together and sutured to the breast tissue in order to allow for support of the newly shaped breasts.


The results of your breast reduction will be immediately visible, though you’ll have some dressings, bandages, and sutures for a little while after the surgery is completed. Additionally, the scars that the incisions leave behind are permanent. Though, they fade over time and can be easily covered with a bra or bathing suit.

Your surgeon will give you specific instructions related to caring for your wounds during the healing period. You’ll be able to go home the same day after a period of supervised recovery.

The first couple of days, you may feel a considerable amount of soreness and tenderness while the wounds heal. You can use ice packs to help alleviate discomfort by gently placing them over top of bandages.

Most patients are able to return to work after just one week, but you’ll probably need to wait at least three to four before engaging in exercise besides just walking. It is important to follow your cosmetic surgeon’s specific guidelines following your procedure before you get back to normal activity.

Benefits of Breast Reduction Surgery

Breast reduction can be one of the most rewarding cosmetic procedures because it alleviates physical and emotional discomfort while helping to enhance your appearance. You’ll be able to engage in activities that you haven’t been able to participate in quite some time.

Not to mention, if you’re able to maintain a stable weight and you do not become pregnant, your breasts will remain small and lighter for the rest of your life.

Are Breast Reductions Safe?

Breast augmentations are the fifth most common plastic surgery procedures in the country. This means that plastic surgeons have experience performing this surgery.

Your safety is a top priority, but medicine is not an exact science.

The possible risks involved in breast reduction are similar to any other surgery, including temporary bruising, scarring, loss of sensation around the nipples, difficulty or inability to breastfeed, or differences in the symmetry of surgically altered breasts. Some of these may require further surgery to address.

It’s important to speak with your plastic surgeon about possible risks during and after the surgery. Also, be sure to follow their instructions to reduce your risk of infection post-op.

Breast Reduction Vs. Breast Implant

While both a breast reduction and a breast implant involve shaping the breast to enhance their appearance, the main difference is that breast implants involve the addition of implants or fat transfer to add more volume rather than take away.

There are many different types of breast implants, and your surgeon will be able to make recommendations based on what they believe will work best for you. A breast implant may be right for you if you feel your breasts are too small or if the size of your breasts causes you to feel emotional distress.

Wrap Up

Breast reduction surgery, or reduction mammaplasty, is a common procedure that involves reducing the size of the breasts through removal of fat, skin, and tissue. Oversized breasts can cause both physical and emotional distress for individuals, so breast reduction surgery is often a great way to feel some relief.

Good candidates for breast reduction surgery are generally feeling that physical and emotional distress to a large degree. Additionally, if you’re unable to participate in certain activities, you’re unhappy with the size of your breasts, or they are causing you pain, a reduction mammaplasty may be right for you.

The procedure itself involves an incision on the breast around the nipple. Fat and skin is removed, and the skin is pulled tightly to create a more voluptuous and perky appearance. Larger incisions are made depending on how much fat must be removed.

One of the great things about breast reductions is that the results are permanent, and you can enjoy a more desirable breast size for the rest of your life. At PH-1 Miami, we pride ourselves in seeing our patients lead happier lives after their procedure.

To boost your confidence and enhance your self-image, fill out an inquiry form today.


Breast reduction surgery | The Mayo Clinic

IV Sedation: Definition & Effects | Made for This Moment

2020 Plastic Surgery Statistics | American Society of Plastic Surgeons

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