While many women wish to increase the size of their breasts with breast augmentation, others want to do the opposite. Large, pendulous breasts can cause physical and emotional discomfort. Breast reduction surgery can be performed to provide relief from these concerns and has some of the highest reported rates of patient satisfaction.
The Effects of Overly Large Breasts
If you have large breasts, you are already aware of the discomfort they can cause. You may suffer shoulder dents from bra straps, neck and back pain, skin irritations or infections, and sometimes even breathing trouble due to the weight of your breasts.
Large breasts can also make it difficult to exercise and find clothing that fits properly. All of these issues come together to have a significant negative impact on your quality of life. If you are unhappy with your oversized breasts, and they are interfering with your daily life, you may consider breast reduction surgery.
What Are My Options for Breast Reduction?
The techniques used for your surgery will depend on several factors. During your consultation, your doctor will ask you about your expectations and whether or not you are planning on becoming pregnant. Some patients may decide to undergo breast augmentation after they are finished having children, as the surgery may affect the ability to breastfeed. However, many women have surgery before having children due to the improvements in quality of life that breast reduction can provide.
The location and type of incision will also depend on your goals and the extent of correction needed. There are three incisions that can be used.
- Donut incision: This option is best for patients who only require minimal correction. Concentric incisions are made around the perimeter of the areolas, excess tissue and skin are removed, and the incisions are closed.
- Lollipop incision: This technique is the most commonly used. The incision is made around the edge of the areola and then continues vertically down the underside of the breast.
- Anchor or Wise-pattern incision: This incision is best for patients who require extensive reduction of the breasts. The technique is similar to the lollipop incision with an additional incision made along the inframammary crease, where the bottom the breast meets the chest wall.
A small portion of patients may be able to have the size of their breasts reduced using liposuction.
Can Breast Reduction Address Sagging?
Because the weight of large breasts usually causes sagging, the breasts are lifted during reduction surgery to raise them to a more aesthetically pleasing position. However, some patients may be happy with the volume of their breasts but still be concerned with sagging. In these cases, a breast lift can be performed as a standalone procedure.