Breast reduction brings relief to the whole body
Big breasts can be a burden. Especially when they lose tone after pregnancy or weight loss. Many patients therefore opt for a breast reduction, or reduction mammoplasty (short: mammary reduction), possibly in conjunction with a breast lift. It is important to us that you are in harmony with your body, so that during the consultation especially the health aspect can be foregrounded. Women with large and heavy breasts often suffer from back pain or tensions. Also aesthetically a breast reduction and breast lift can have positive effects – for body and mind.
Personal advice: For whom is breast reduction an adequate solution and which results are sought?
Each breast reduction in our practice in Berlin is preceded by an individual and personal consultation, in which above all the expectations and goals of our patients are discussed and all arising questions are clarified. In principle, the decision to reduce the size of the breast, regardless of age, has only two prerequisites: Growth must be completed and the breast must be fully developed. In any case, it should be discussed in advance if patients are planning to lose weight or to become pregnant in the near future, because in both cases the breast shape can change significantly and affect the outcome of the operation.
Course of events for a breast reduction surgery in Berlin
In a breast reduction, skin and breast tissue is removed and then a new breast is formed with the remaining tissue. The nipple usually needs to be shifted to fit the newly formed breast. In the frame of a breast reduction we have specialized in a technique to reduce scars: depending on the amount removed, we use the Lejour or Hall Findlay technique. With these methods it is possible to preserve the functions of the nipple. (With the help of a so-called “stalk” the necessary blood vessels, the intercostal nerve which is important for the sensitivity of the breast and the milk ducts are preserved.) Since during the procedure “only” skin and breast tissue are removed, the breast does not lose its natural function. As little skin is removed as necessary. In case of a large excess of skin, a further cut must sometimes be made in the lower breast crease. In the course of surgery, the breast gets a new shape and size. A lasting effect that is only affected by the aging process, weight changes or gravity. When the time comes, you can talk about a re-intervention if necessary.
Breast reduction: preparation and anaesthesia
Patients are usually hospitalized for breast reduction, mostly for two days. Before the procedure, there are preliminary examinations and an advisory discussion with the anaesthetist. About two weeks before the procedure alcohol, nicotine, sleeping pills and painkillers are prohibited. If you need to take certain medications on a regular basis, you should tell us in the course of the preliminary examination to rule out any negative side effects. In addition, in the run-up to breast reduction, a mammogram is expediently carried out in order to detect possible tissue changes that might influence the course of surgery. Overall, the surgery takes two to three hours. It is technically quite demanding, but has been one of the standard procedures in our practice for many years.
Aftercare and healing
The healing process after the breast reduction is usually as good as painless. In the first few days, however, severe swelling and bruising may not be ruled out, but they will gradually decrease in the course of the following days and weeks. After about two days, you can leave the clinic and wear – similar to the breast augmentation – a support bra for about one and a half months. The nipples’ touch sensitivity may be reduced in the subsequent period after breast reduction. A “normal” sensation may not return until a few months after the operation. About six months after the operation, a definitive result can be judged. If parts of the tissue have hardened, full recovery may take up to two years. Scars will disappear over time to the point of inconspicuousness.
Possible risks and complications of a breast reduction
Important for any surgical procedure: if patients are allergic to medication or care products we must be notified in advance. Other illnesses should also be discussed promptly with your surgeon. Conspicuous bruises or persistent bleeding after minor injuries may indicate a coagulation disorder. This should be precluded by a separate examination. If your wounds don’t heal properly, scars, tensions, pain and bruising may occur – in severe cases even infections. If you recognize symptoms of this kind, do contact your surgeon immediately. He will be happy to discuss a possibly necessary aftercare with you. The affected skin and tissue regions in some cases change after surgery. This is due to your individual healing process and can lead to slight differences in the shape of the breasts. Another intervention would correct changes of that kind. If more than 500 grams of tissue have been removed, a loss of sensitivity in the nipples cannot be excluded. Very rarely tissue (also in the area of the nipples) is rejected due to circulatory disorders. If it comes to such symptoms, the corresponding areas are replaced with the body’s own skin.
Regeneration and aftercare
After breast reduction it is important not to take physical efforts too quickly, even if you feel fit again after a week. It usually takes three to four weeks to get back to work, depending on the exact job. Strain on the chest should be largely avoided because it can have a negative effect on the healing of the wounds – this applies to household work as well as sports and sexual intercourse. On the other hand, anything that gently stimulates blood circulation in the tissue, has a positive effect on the healing process. In addition to good skincare, this also includes cold showering, which is allowed after just a few days. For swellings or taut breasts we recommend lymphatic drainage. If in some cases there are problems with wound healing (severe pain, possibly in connection with tensions and bruising), you should contact the practice immediately.