Breast reduction, or reduction mammoplasty, is a cosmetic surgical procedure designed to reduce the size of either one or both breasts. This is achieved by physically removing breast tissues and the surrounding skin. In the United Kingdom, breast reduction comprises 12.6% (3,566) of all cosmetic surgeries performed.
There are several reasons why women choose to take a reduction mammoplasty procedure to decrease the size of their breasts. Here are several of the common ones.
• Proportion: Having large breasts that are not in proportion to the body’s frame can place a heavy strain on the back, shoulders and neck which could lead to chronic pain. Taking painkillers or going to therapy can reduce the pain, but the long term strain can cause poor posture and even a hunched back. In addition, they can also cause problems sleeping as abnormally-large breasts make it difficult to find a comfortable sleeping position.
• Recreation: Large breasts are very uncomfortable for physically active women; exercising, running and playing sports are extremely difficult. Not only do large breasts limit mobility and agility, they also cause pain and friction.
• Lifestyle: Finding clothes that fit is extremely challenging for women with large breasts. Owing to the small addressable market, stores never stock clothes that fit. The problem is worse for women who are required to wear uniforms such as hotel receptionists, stewardess or even in law enforcement, since such attires are purchased in bulk.
• Sexual Attention: Women with large breasts receive a lot of unwanted attention both socially and professionally. Further, society tends to attach negative labels to women with large breasts, which could create lasting psychological damage.
Reduction mammoplasty can provide instant relief from all the issues noted above. Is it any wonder why so many women are taking the surgical solution to resolve the problem?
There are several methods for the procedure. The most popular option is through the anchor shaped or lollipop incision. These two methods are deemed the safest as they avoid the blood vessel-heavy nipple-areola complex and minimise impairments of the lactational capability of breasts.
Once an incision has been made, your doctor will remove breast tissues and all excess skin. The nipples will then be repositioned to ensure they remain central on the breast. In certain cases, liposuction is performed to shape and contour the breast to keep the mound balanced. Before the incisions are closed with stitches, a small tube may be placed in the wound for about a day or two to facilitate drainage of blood and liquid.
Reduction mammoplasty is a very safe procedure. However, as with all surgeries, there are numerous ways the procedure could go wrong, including, negative reaction to anaesthesia, infection, and heavy bleeding. Furthermore, patients may also experience reduced or complete loss of sensation around the nipple area. Needless to say, there will be permanent scars at the incision points.
Note: Women are pregnant should wait until the pregnancy is over before even contemplating the surgery as the shape and size of breasts change during the period. Moreover, breastfeeding may not be possible for a short period of time following the surgery.