Problems Due To Large Breasts
These are chiefly backache, neck pain, grooves in the shoulders from bra straps, rashes under the breasts and the feeling of self consciousness. Because of the sexual nature of breasts the undue prominence may attract unwanted attention from the opposite sex, comments and sexual innuendoes. These can cause psychological distress to many women. One of the commonest complaints of women with large breasts is that it is very difficult to wear fashionable clothes and indulge in active sports, particularly swimming.
Reduction mammaplasty is an operation which removes the excess fat and skin from the breasts, which are reshaped and the nipples repositioned to form newer smaller breasts. This should result in more attractive breasts and reduce many of the problems outlined above. There are several different surgical designs to reshape the breasts. All of them will involve a scar around the areola of the breast. Reduction mammaplasty may be also used to correct asymmetry of the breast. Limited amount of fat without skin excess can be reduced by Liposuction. This procedure is carried out under a general anaesthetic and requires 2-4 days of hospital stay.
It is very important that you discuss thoroughly with your surgeon beforehand the size of breasts you wish to achieve. It is also possible that there may be a degree of asymmetry. This is often less than existed before the surgery. In women with very large breasts the benefits of a significant reduction may outweigh the potential imperfections of poor shape and loss of nipple function and sensitivity. However, in women with breasts which are only slightly larger than normal, a very careful thought must be given to the postoperative scarring and the potential shape and size of the operated breasts before deciding about the surgery.
Apart from the change of shape and reduction in size the most obvious consequences are the scars. These are designed to be invisible whilst wearing normal clothing and as far as possible are designed to lie under the average bra or bikini top. In the initial period following surgery the scars will be red, possibly thick and uncomfortable, but later on they are much more pale and less obvious. However, they will always be present and visible when clothing is not worn and the scars will vary from one woman to another. In some they may be very thin, in others they may stretch and become quite red and possibly ugly.
Very few women are able to breast feed following breast reduction surgery as the nipples are separated from the underlying milk ducts. Breast reduction is no contra- indication to pregnancy but young women may well wish to take the fact that they are unable to breast feed into account before embarking on this procedure. The nipples are likely to be very much less sensitive following surgery due to the nature of the cuts and the nerve supply and it is quite possible that numbness will extend over some parts of the breast as well.
Any major operation with a general anaesthetic carries a small risk of chest infectionparticularly among people who smoke and there is also a small risk of thrombosis in the veins of the leg, particularly for patients who are taking the contraceptive pill.
Occasionally, heavy bleeding can occur after the operation is finished which may need a further operation to remove the blood clot and may need
Occasionally, infection from germs harbouring in the ducts of the breast can be troublesome. Infection can be treated with antibiotics but it will delay the healing process.
Occasionally, skin can become sloughy and form a scab which gradually separates to leave a broad scar. People who smoke are at greater risk of this happening. Usually the scars over this area settle well to end up as white lines but they will always be noticeable.There is no evidence that reduction mammaplasty causes breast cancer Nor does it prevent your breast from being examined for cancer screening in theusual way.
Before The Surgery
It is strongly recommend that you reduce weight if you are overweight and to make alternative arrangements if you are on the contraceptive pill. Smoking does seriously effect the healing of the breast wounds and should be discouraged and attempts to give it up made. Also stop taking Aspirin or NSAID pain killers for two weeks before the operation.
After The Surgery
This procedure is carried out under a general anaesthetic and when you wake at the end of the operation there will be some discomfort which will last for two or three days. You will be given suitable pain killers and antibiotics. Drainage tubes are frequently used and will be removed within 2-3 days. You may need to remain in hospital for three to four days. A well-fitting bra will need to be worn following surgery but because of the post-operative swelling the final size of your breasts may not be obvious for several weeks.