Breast reduction

Overview
Duration: about 1 hour
Anesthesia: general anesthesia
Length of stay: inpatient 1-2 nights
Suture removal: self-dissolving
Healing time: 2 weeks

The breasts are the symbol of femininity, so breasts that are too large or asymmetrical can affect well-being. Some women find breasts that are too large to be unattractive and others suffer from health problems as a result, which are caused by the weight of the breasts. These include back and neck pain, poor posture, inflammation in the underbust crease, but also sleep problems. A professionally performed breast reduction therefore aims to shape a smaller and firmer breast according to your wishes. The choice to have a breast lift is often preceded by a long decision-making process, which is why Dr. Matiasek can offer you assistance to accompany you in your decision.

What are the reasons for a breast reduction?

Many women want large breasts, but large breasts can also be a burden. Therefore, the reasons for a breast reduction can be very diverse. Those affected often suffer from chronic back pain, which is often associated with herniated discs. In addition, the psychological stress caused by the large breasts can be a reason for a breast reduction, as women often feel uncomfortable in their own bodies. Some women also choose the procedure because their breasts are unevenly large or because of severe skin irritation and eczema in the underbust fold. A professionally performed breast reduction is the only treatment option and provides the patient with significant relief.

What do I have to consider before a breast reduction?

Before the breast reduction, a detailed consultation takes place, during which the breast is examined and Dr. Matiasek will discuss the desired result with you. In this way, you can determine exactly what you expect from the procedure and create an individual treatment plan. In addition, he will explain the exact procedure of the breast reduction and you will be informed about the possible risks and complications that are possible during an operation as well as those that are not completely unavoidable from a medical point of view. However, due to the current state of medical research, these are low and do not occur in all patients. The breast reduction takes place under general anesthesia and with good preparation it is possible to reduce the risk of complications. Of course, there is also enough time during the conversation to answer further questions.

In general, it is important to stop taking blood-thinning medication 14 days before surgery. You should also stop taking any sleeping pills about two weeks before the planned surgery date. Ideally, you should also stop consuming alcohol and nicotine. On the day of the breast reduction itself, you should stop eating six hours beforehand. Drinking water or unsweetened tea, on the other hand, is allowed up to two hours before the operation.

How does a breast reduction work?

When it comes to breast reduction, doctors differentiate between different techniques. They all have in common that the fat and glandular tissue is removed from the breasts. The difference, however, is where exactly the cuts are made. Which method is used depends on the nature of the patient’s breasts. However, an inpatient stay of around one to two days is always planned.

If it is necessary to remove a lot of tissue during the breast reduction, a breast lift is usually also carried out. In this context, a nipple correction may also be necessary in order to adapt the nipple to the new breast shape.

 The most common cutting techniques are:

Benelli technique

This method is particularly suitable when only small parts of the breast tissue need to be removed. A circular incision is made along the areola to remove excess skin. In combination with a subsequent slight tightening, the wound healing usually proceeds quickly and does not leave a visible scar.

Lejour technique

With this incision technique, the removal of a large amount of tissue is intended. In this case, however, vertical incisions are dispensed with and the incision runs from the areola vertically in the direction of the underbust crease, as the resulting access is significantly larger and facilitates increased tissue removal. In the vast majority of cases, in addition to the breast reduction, a tightening is also required or desired.

L-cut and T-cut

If the patient’s breast shows significant slackness, an L- or T-cut is usually used. With the L-cut, the cut runs to one side only, with the T-cut, on the other hand, it is placed on both sides in the underbust fold. However, both methods have in common that the incision around the areola is made with a vertical, downward incision. Often the nipple also has to be moved upwards. Depending on the cut, a T- or L-shaped scar is formed.

What are the risks of a breast reduction?

As with any surgical procedure, possible risks and complications cannot be completely ruled out. This can lead to infections, redness or swelling after the operation. However, the side effects usually go away after a few days. In addition, sensory disorders, wound healing disorders, unaesthetic scars and scar growths can occur directly on the nipple. In extremely rare cases, nipple death is possible.

Since the fatty tissue in the breast is connected to the glandular tissue, the glandular tissue is usually also removed during the operation. As a result, the risk of inability to breastfeed cannot be completely ruled out during this procedure, as it can injure the milk cords. Therefore, women who want to have children should ideally only have the breast reduction performed when they have completed their family planning.

What do I have to consider after a breast reduction?

After the operation, it is particularly important to give your body enough rest so that the healing process can proceed without complications. It is also important to wear a special support bra for the first few weeks, both during the day and at night. This supports the healing process and shapes the breasts as desired.

Since there is still an increased risk of wound infection in the first few weeks after the operation, you should avoid going to the sauna and solarium in the first six weeks. The consumption of alcohol also has a negative effect on wound healing, so it should be avoided. In addition, sleeping position has an impact on the result. You should therefore not sleep on your stomach or on your side for the first few weeks postoperatively.

 You are only allowed to shower seven to 14 days after the procedure, because water must not soften the wound too much. In order to additionally support the healing process, cold showers are particularly useful, as they stimulate blood circulation. A full bath, on the other hand, is only recommended after five weeks. Sports activities are allowed again after two weeks. It is best to wait four to six weeks before lifting heavy objects and performing strenuous activities. Depending on your occupation, you will be able to work again after about a week.

After a breast reduction, it is essential to keep the appointments for the follow-up check-up, because in this way the healing process can be continuously monitored.

When can I see the results of the breast reduction surgery?

After the procedure, it may take some time to see the final result. This is because the swelling takes some time to go down. In the vast majority of cases, the new breast shape can be recognized after about six weeks. However, it can take up to six months for the final result to be visible. The result can then be seen permanently. However, the shape and size of the breasts can change again after a breast reduction due to the natural aging process or significant weight gain. In such a case, a new breast reduction is usually possible without any problems.

In his practice, with the help of an examination of your breasts, an individually tailored treatment plan can be created that corresponds to your wishes. Therefore, Dr. Matiasek looks forward to welcoming you to a consultation soon.

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