Fit More Comfortably in Your Clothes with this Surgery in Austin, TX
The breasts are often a focal point in cosmetic procedures, as women typically have an idea of how they want their upper-body profile to look. While many women desire more size and fullness in the breasts, others have entirely different goals in mind: breast reduction. The all-female, Austin, TX-based team at Austin Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery understands that women with excessively large breasts often feel self-conscious about their bodies and uncomfortable in their clothes. They may also suffer from physical symptoms caused by the weight of their breasts such as pain in their neck, back, and shoulders, as well as chronic skin rashes from friction underneath their breasts.
For women who have disproportionately large breasts, breast reduction surgery can be truly life altering. In fact, this procedure has one of the highest patient satisfaction rates of any plastic or reconstructive surgery procedure performed today. A common comment from women who have received the procedure is, "I wish I had done this 10 years ago!" With extensive experience and expertise in a wide range of breast enhancement and breast reconstructive procedures, our plastic surgeons are fully qualified to perform your breast reduction surgery. With their eye for beauty and symmetry, they know how to help our patients craft an attractive and more comfortable size and shape that fits their own personal aesthetic and lifestyle goals.
“From my very first interaction all the way through the after appointments, my experience has been top notch. Dr Fisher is not only an amazing doctor, she has also assembled a staff of individuals that are equally caring, kind, and considerate. The staff remembered my name every time I have walked through the door. They have plenty of free parking, so the visit is always a breeze. Dr. Fisher and all of the staff always have a smile and cheerful dispositions, and they always have time to help and to answer all of my many questions and concerns.”
Why Should You Consider Breast Reduction?
Breast reduction surgery offers aesthetic improvement and relief from physical discomfort at the same time. Some of the reasons women may choose breast reduction include:
- Breasts that are disproportionately large in relation to the rest of their body contours
- Inability to wear certain types of clothing due to the size of the breasts
- Avoidance of certain activities due to physical discomfort or embarrassment
- Heavy, pendulous breasts that cause shoulder and neck fatigue
- Skin friction underneath the breasts that leads to recurrent rashes and infections
- Indentations in the shoulder due to the weight of breasts pulling down on bra straps
- Lack of self-confidence and self-esteem due to their appearance
Whether you are seeking breast reduction for purely cosmetic reasons or to relieve chronic pain, we can help. We will listen to your concerns and take the time to fully understand your aesthetic goals, so together you can design the ideal surgical plan for you. You will collaborate to develop a treatment that will bring balance, proportion and harmony to your entire body profile. If another procedure besides breast reduction would be a better fit for you, your surgeon will discuss those options with you.
What is the Appropriate Age for Breast Reduction Surgery?
At Austin Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery, we typically want our breast reduction patients to be at least 18 years old. There are two reasons for this. First, female breast development continues throughout the teenage years, and it may not be fully complete until a woman’s early 20s. If you already have breasts far larger than you’d like, this may seem an arbitrary guideline, but by waiting until age 18 that precludes the possibility of needing a second reduction if your breasts keep growing.
Just as important as physical criteria, young women need to be emotionally ready for this procedure. For most women plagued by the excess weight of their breasts and the unwanted attention they attract, these procedures are truly life-changing. But this involves a significant change in your body shape, and you simply need to have the maturity to handle it.
In extreme cases, exceptions can be made, but generally, our team prefers our breast reduction patients to be at least 18 years old.
Options for Breast Reduction
There is not a one-size-fits-all approach to cosmetic breast reductions. Because every woman's body is different, the techniques and methods used during the surgery must be tailored to the precise needs, proportions and desired outcome of the individual patient.
In most cases, a "lollipop" incision will be used for a "vertical" technique breast reduction, which involves an incision encircling the areola and moving down the lower half of the breast. However, patients who need more extensive correction may also require additional incisions to accommodate the amount of skin and tissue that need to be removed to achieve the appropriate result.
Can I Combine Breast Reduction with Other Procedures?
These are involved procedures, and that needs to be taken into consideration when exploring whether breast reduction can be combined with another procedure. If you choose to have some liposuction on an area such as the flanks or the lower abdomen, that would be an easy extension of your breast reduction. That’s because modern liposuction does not require a difficult recovery.
A mommy makeover combines a tummy tuck, breast lift, and liposuction. Breast reduction is very similar to a breast lift, simply removing more tissue, so that is already a combination of surgeries.
Your Surgery Experience
Breast reduction is completed in a series of steps, giving you and our team ample time to evaluate your personal needs and create the outcome you desire. This is what you can expect from your breast reduction experience:
Your initial consultation is the ideal time to share your concerns and discuss what you want and expect from your breast reduction procedure. Once we understand your goals for the surgery, we will determine the best approach to use to ensure a safe and successful operation and the best possible results. You will have the opportunity to ask questions so that you are comfortable and confident as you prepare for the day of your procedure.
How to Prepare for Breast Reduction Surgery
This is major surgery, so you’ll need to do the same things you would prior to any surgery: stop taking any anti-inflammatory medications, aspirin, blood thinners, and most herbal supplements for at least one week prior to your surgery. These can cause excessive bleeding and increased subsequent bruising and swelling.
If you smoke, you’ll need to stop for at least two weeks prior to and two weeks after your surgery, as smoking constricts the blood vessels, which can impede healing.
You will want to take about one week off work for recovery after surgery. You won’t be able to lift anything heavier than 10 pounds and you also won’t be able to reach above shoulder height for two weeks. You will want to bring things down from shelves so that you can easily grab them without reaching up.
Prepare your recovery nest. It’s important to really rest after reduction surgery, as we excise a fair amount of tissue and reposition remaining tissue, so there is a good amount of tissue trauma. By laying low, you make it easy for your body to start the healing process. Make your nest ultimately comfortable with lots of pillows and blankets. You’ll need to sleep mostly on your back, so pillows can help you stay in place. Have all the entertainment you can want at your fingertips.
The Day of Your Breast Reduction Surgery in Austin
Breast reduction is usually performed with the patient under general anesthesia, so you are asleep for the procedure and do not experience any discomfort. Surgery begins by making a vertical incision down the center of your breast, from the areola to the breast crease, and another around the areola, inside the pigmented area. If additional correction is necessary, she will add another horizontal incision in the crease underneath the breast. Most incisions will be carefully placed where post-operative scarring will be minimal and safely hidden along the fold of the breast, not visible even in undergarments.
Through the incisions, removal of fat, skin, and glandular breast tissue to sculpt smaller, more lifted breasts that are beautifully symmetrical and in better balance with the rest of the body. Depending on the size of your new breasts, we may recommend trimming down the size of the areola so that it remains proportionate to create a natural aesthetic appearance. The nipple and areola may also be re-positioned, restoring them to a more youthful position on your new newly sculpted breasts. Finally, liposuction of the lateral chest can be used as part of a breast reduction procedure to improve the contour of the lateral breast and further improve the aesthetic result.
After reducing, reshaping, and lifting your breasts, the incisions will be closed with layers of absorbable hidden sutures and seal these with surgical tape or medical glue. Your chest will then be placed in a surgical bra to minimize swelling and offer support during the early healing process. In most cases, breast reduction surgery takes between one and three hours to complete. If the procedure is performed in conjunction with other body contouring procedures such as a tummy tuck, you can expect a longer surgical time.
Austin Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery
- Known for natural-looking aesthetic results in breast reconstruction and cosmetic surgery.
- Elected by peers for inclusion in Texas Monthly's Texas Super Doctors®: Rising Stars listing.
- Reconstructed over 6,000 patients, including more than 2,500 DIEP flap reconstructions.
- 4.9-star average rating over hundreds of reviews for reconstructive and cosmetic surgery.
Recovery & Results that Last
Breast reduction surgery is typically done as an outpatient procedure, meaning you can go home a few hours after your surgery. It is essential to have someone with you for the first day or two to ensure you do not experience any complications and you can rest comfortably during that initial recovery period. We will provide instructions on how to minimize swelling, manage discomfort, and care for your incisions while you recover to provide you with a comfortable recuperation and the best possible outcome from your operation.
Most of our breast reduction patients return to work within a week and are able to engage in light exercise, such as gentle walking, after two weeks. More intensive aerobic exercise is strongly discouraged until four weeks after breast reduction surgery to give the breasts ample time to heal. Swelling is common after this procedure but typically subsides within three to six months.
All surgery results in a scar along the incision, and the appearance of the scar ultimately depends on the patient's genetics, race, and skin condition, among other factors. However, careful incision placement, meticulous suturing, and the deployment of evidence-based scar reduction treatments in post-operative care help keep them to a minimum. We employs all these techniques during breast reduction surgery to provide the most aesthetically pleasing results for our patients.
Once you are fully healed from your breast reduction, you should enjoy your smaller, perkier breasts for many years. This procedure is designed to be performed once in a lifetime. However, some women may find that time and the aging process can lead to drooping or sagging in the breasts further down the line, which may prompt them to seek additional treatment to preserve their results. At this time, our surgeons may recommend a breast lift to restore the youthful appearance once again and turn back the clock.
Are the Results from Breast Reduction Permanent?
These surgeries involve the removal of a large amount of loose, hanging, sagging skin along with excess fatty tissue. These are gone for good. Also, reduction is similar to a breast lift in that it elevates the breast mass to a higher, younger position on the chest. Although some future sagging may occur, your breasts will always remain higher and firmer than they were before. The nipple/areola complex usually needs to be relocated to synch with the tissue excision, as well.
These are life-changing procedures for our patients at Austin Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery. The downsizing of their breasts is permanent, and they’re thrilled with that!
Does Insurance Cover Breast Reduction Surgery?
These procedures can be covered by insurance, but they need to be tied to a health issue or issues that your oversized breasts are causing. This could be tingling in your hands, nerve compression in your neck, even chronic rash formation under your sagging breasts. Usually, a primary care physician will need to be behind those diagnoses to gain insurance approval. We’ll discuss this with you during your consultation.
If your reasons for having reduction surgery are more aesthetic than for health reasons, insurance companies may be reluctant to cover the procedure.
Scarring After Breast Reduction Surgery
This procedure involves a sizable incision and thus will create scarring. Your incision scars will be pink for a few weeks, and then they will begin to lighten. They will always be there, but their appearance will continue to improve with time.
What Can I Do to Make My Scars Less Visible?
It's critical that you wear your surgical bra and then your support bra during the first four to six weeks after surgery. This eliminates any stress on the incisions, which keeps the scars as narrow as possible. It also helps reduce some of the redness that naturally occurs while your incisions are healing.
Keep your scars out of the sun. Healing skin is extra sensitive, plus sun exposure makes scars darken. A product called bioCorneum+ SPF 30 is a good topical silicone treatment that doubles as a sunscreen. It creates an invisible protective layer over the scar. This keeps it clean, supported, and shielded from UV rays.
Lightly massaging your scars can also help them heal more smoothly. We will let you know when it is appropriate to incorporate light massage into your recovery regime.
Download Our Cosmetic Surgery Post-Operative Care Guides
We've compiled detailed post-operative care instructions to best equip our cosmetic surgery patients throughout their recovery process. To ensure the best and safest recovery, your plan encompasses appropriate prescriptions and clear directions towards maintaining your comfort to get you back to normal life and activity as soon as possible. Individual patients respond uniquely, and the type of procedure may differ, but these basic guidelines will help you along your journey.
Make the Most of Your Breast Reduction in Austin, TX
Breast reduction offers dramatic, long-lasting results when performed as a stand-alone procedure. However, some patients choose to combine their breast reduction with other treatments to enhance their effects further. Liposuction is frequently added to breast reduction surgery to create a more youthful chest and torso contour in addition to the more proportionate breast size and shape. Some patients may also choose to have additional contouring procedures, such as a tummy tuck, performed at the same time, in order to create their desired total body contour with just a single session spent under anesthesia. This combination approach is particularly attractive to women looking to restore their bodies after weight change or pregnancy, which is why the combination of procedures is often referred to as a "Mommy Makeover." Dr. Fisher prefers to call this approach "post-pregnancy reconstruction" because the goal is restorative as much as cosmetic.
Breast reduction surgery is a popular procedure among women because it can provide dramatic results in terms of appearance and physical comfort levels. With many benefits possible, breast reduction can indeed be a life-changing process that improves a woman's quality of life overall.