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breast reduction



Oversized breasts can cause chronic back pain and hunched walking positions.  With the popularity of Breast Augmentation surgery on the rise, it sometimes boggles the minds of some patients that women would want to reduce the size of their breasts.  


Oversized breasts can cause numerous and severe problems including: chronic back pain and hunched walking positions, recurrent skin infections in the infra-mammary fold area, bra strap pain and headaches.  Similarly women with oversized breasts often suffer from ptosis (sagging) and enlarged areolas; both of which are addressed during breast reduction surgery.  The difficulty and added expense of finding suitable bra’s which often have to be custom made, is an ongoing frustration too.


What is breast reduction surgery exactly?


Breast Reduction surgery is the surgical removal of excess breast tissue and the reshaping of oversized breasts. The results of undergoing Breast Reduction surgery are life changing for the patient and within Dr.Schoenfeld’s practice there is a high satisfaction rate post-surgery.


Am I a candidate for Breast reduction surgery?


Do you have large oversized breasts that are making you uncomfortable, embarrassed or causing severe pain? Are you generally fit and healthy enough to undergo a general anaesthetic? Are you at a healthy and sustainable body weight? - If you answered yes, then you are a good candidate for Breast Reduction surgery.  Of course there are surgical considerations to take into account and of course scar implications that might make a patient decide against the procedure.


Tell me about the surgery


The results of undergoing Breast Reduction surgery are life changing.  The surgery is a long procedure and the recovery time is significant. It is done under general anaesthetic and in some cases you may need to spend the night in hospital.


Being comfortable in your skin, and in your clothes is such a benefit to all who require Breast Reduction surgery.


Your surgical approach will depend on a number of factors:


  • Skin quality.

  • Breast tissue to be removed.

  • Skin and breast elasticity.


In most cases your surgery will follow these general guidelines:


The incision is made around the nipple area, down to the inframamary fold and then along the fold in what is described as a key hole incision.  The skin and tissue is then removed from the breast and drains will be inserted. (These are typically removed the day after surgery.)  Once the breasts have been remoulded the key-hole incision edges are sutured together to hold the breast in place.  In most cases the nipple will be repositioned.


All this sounds complicated, but all will be described to you during the consultation with Dr. Schoenfeld and the satisfaction rate is extremely high.


How long is the recovery period?


Dr.Schoenfeld will ask you to take at least one week from work to recover from your breast reduction surgery, but 2 weeks is ideal. You can expect your breasts to be tender and painful for a few days following the surgery but Dr.Schoenfeld will prescribe oral painkillers to keep you comfortable. Most patients report a surprisingly low level of pain after the surgery and tolerate it extremely well.


As with most breast surgery you will need to stop all physical activity for about 4-6 weeks post-surgery. Dr.Schoenfeld will want to see you fairly regularly after the surgery for dressing changes and follow up check-ups, and it is vitally important that you keep these appointments.


What are the risks?


As with all operations the risks include but are not limited to:


  • Bleeding, infection, wound breakdown, transient or permanent sensation changes in the skin and/or the nipple area, skin or nipple loss, deep vein thrombosis and possible pulmonary embolism, as well as fat necrosis. Other complications associated with general anaesthesia may also apply.


  • Studies have shown that breast reduction surgery does NOT increase your risk of possibly developing breast cancer in future. A mammogram to confirm that your breasts are healthy before you undergo the surgery is advised mainly in woman over the age of 40yrs.


  • There is a significantly reduced ability to breast feed after this type of surgery, so if you have not yet had children, you may want to delay the surgery until after you have completed your family.


  • Any significant weight change after the surgery (loss or gain) as well as pregnancy and menopause may cause unpredictable and permanent changes in your breasts despite the reduction surgery, and may compromise your ultimate aesthetic results. It is therefor imperative that you carefully consider the timing of your surgery, taking into account your current and future life plans.


Combination Procedures


In many cases patients opt to mould their bodies to match their new breasts and often undergo Liposuction or Tummy tuck surgery at the same time as Breast Reduction surgery. If you are looking for a body make-over you will need to discuss this option during the consultation as not all procedures are recommended to be performed together.


If you are considering undergoing breast reduction surgery with Dr.Schoenfeld, please call her Howick rooms to make an appointment on 033 3304727 / 4.

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