Breast Reduction or Reduction Mammoplasty Surgery

Reduction Mammoplasty Surgery

Overly large and pendulous breasts can be as disturbing to a woman as extremely small breasts. In addition, breast pain and shoulder discomfort are prevalent. Lesser problems relate to the need for special supportive undergarments and difficulty in finding suitable clothing in readily available sizes. Extremely large breasts limit participation in various athletic activities. Surgical correction of this condition is not new. There are many different operations, some conceived fifty to seventy-five years ago, that are still performed today with very little modification.

The basic breast reduction surgery involves reducing breast volume and restoration of normal contour. Enlargement of the breast is associated with varying degrees of sagging and in most cases gradual displacement of the nipple to an inferior position. Restoration of normal contour therefore includes replacement or shifting of the nipple to a new level consistent with the remaining breast. Surgical procedures to relocate the nipple more effectively are extremely varied. Functional and aesthetic considerations also figure in the selection of a specific procedure; among them are the location and degree of postoperative scar tissue which will be present at the site of each separate incision. The scars are sited around the areola, beneath the breast (in the infra-mammary fold), and a short vertical scar joining the above two scars. Scars notable in the first six to twelve months following the breast reduction surgery will gradually fade and improve with time, but will not disappear.

Local risks in this type of surgery are essentially associated with loss of soft tissue and replacement by scar tissue-largely the result of compromised blood circulation. Shifting, partial excision, and manipulation to achieve proper contour necessarily involve partial separation of tissues from their normal blood supply. While every case shows great adaptability, some types of deformities can require large reductions in volume and so extreme change in position that the tissue’s natural limits may be exceeded. When this occurs, the tissues so affected undergo destruction and are replaced by scar tissue. Minor tissue losses may take place. Since the nipple area always requires the greatest displacement, partial or even complete absorption (loss) is conceivable. With present techniques, however, the possibility of loss has become extremely rare.

Partial or complete loss of nipple sensitivity may occur depending upon the type of operation selected. While the loss is a significant consideration, it should be recognized that the over enlarged pendulous breast is less sensitive to begin with. Breast-feeding after the usual breast reduction Mammoplasty generally may be possible. Great care is taken at the pre-operative consultation to decide on the specific size the patient prefers to be. The breast reduction procedure is performed under general anaesthetic. A bra is worn for four weeks after surgery. Sutures are absorbable and do not have to be removed. All efforts are made to keep the infra-mammary scar as short as possible without compromising the aesthetic shape of the breast. The hospital stay is two days and your recovery will take approximately twelve days.

Meticulous attention to the healing scar with taping and moisturisers for several months during the maturation process will usually culminate in very acceptable scarring.

Plastic Surgeon Dr. Saul Braun operates from the Netcare Rosebank Hospital, situated in the up-market Northern Suburbs of Johannesburg.

Back to Breast Plastic Surgery Procedures.