A breast reduction is a surgical procedure that involves removal of excess breast tissue, fat, and skin, in order to provide the patient with more comfort, alleviation of medical issues, and a more proportional body shape. Women with breasts that are very heavy can experience a number of issues, including back pain, headaches, shoulder pain, numbness or tingling in the arms, thoracic nerve compression, and cuts in the skin from bra straps. Large breasts can interfere with exercise, buying off-the-rack clothes, and a number of other daily activities.
Carrying around the extra weight of very large breasts can be a pain both literally and figuratively. Along with the medical issues listed above, you might experience some issues with self-esteem. You might develop skin rashes from your bra digging into your skin. Your center of gravity might be difficult to manage, making some everyday activities difficult. Shopping can be a nightmare. Buying swimsuits or lingerie from a normal store becomes impossible. Some women even report that men dont treat them with as much respect as they should because of their breast size.
A breast reduction will reduce or eliminate these issues. The procedure doesnt take away your hourglass shape. The goal is simply to make your silhouette more proportional and your breast size more manageable in your daily life. Youll be able to wear one sports bra instead of two, buy clothes, swimsuits, and bras from normal stores instead of specialty stores, and take up that running or aerobics class youve wanted to try.
A good candidate for a breast reduction will have realistic expectations of the procedure, and will be doing the surgery for their own reason and not to satisfy anyone else. Good candidates are bothered physically and mentally by the size of their breasts. Many suffer from self-consciousness or shyness because of the unwanted attention their breast size brings them.
Physically, good candidates for breast reduction have large, pendulous breasts with downward-pointing nipples (they might even be below the breast crease). They will have skin irritation from their bra straps digging into their shoulders, and from the elastic of their bra straps around the chest. They will also have skin irritation under the breasts, and have issues operating their daily lives because of their breast size. There might also be associated stretch marks or unusually large nipples.
Finally, good candidates have the medical issues discussed above, caused by the weight of their breasts (back pain, shoulder pain, headaches, etc.). If you meet these requirements, you are probably a good candidate for a breast reduction.
When you come in for your consultation, your surgeon will go over your medical history and give you a physical examination. The weight, size, and position of your breasts will let your doctor know if your back pain or other medical issues will worsen over time. He will discuss the problems your breasts cause you in your daily life. Once he goes over all these factors, the surgeon will let you know if he thinks you are a good candidate for the surgery.
After the breast reduction, you will need a few weeks to recover and let the swelling go down before you can see your final results. However, you will immediately notice how much lighter your chest feels. You will be able to stand up straight without strain, and take deeper breaths. After a few weeks, the compression bra that you were after surgery will be replaced with sports bras and regular bras (that you wont have to special order from a store for women with larger chests). At that point, you will be able to appreciate your new, more balanced silhouette.
And thats how you know if youre a good candidate for a breast reduction! The procedure will improve your life physically, mentally, and improve your aesthetic appearance, as well. Some insurance companies will also cover a breast reduction, if you meet certain medical criteria. Call your insurance company to find out what requirements they have for covering a breast reduction, and what your potential out of pocket expense will be.
If you meet these criteria and want to reduce your breast size, call our Northern Virginia office at (703) 574-2588 to schedule your consultation.