What is breast reduction?
Together with the breast lift, a breast reduction is one of the most common breast operations in the Netherlands. Breasts develop during puberty. Their size and shape are often determined by genetic predisposition. Many women struggle with the shape of their breasts, which can be affected by, for example, gaining or losing weight, pregnancy and the condition of the skin and breast tissue. Our specialised doctors will gladly help you to achieve the desired results.
Breasts can easily start to hang when the skin loses its elasticity. Women often consider having a breast reduction done when they frequently suffer neck, shoulder and back problems. Also, from an aesthetic point of view, one can be unhappy with breasts that are too large. A breast reduction operation can help to reduce these problems and can bring the size of the breasts more into proportion with the shape of the body. A breast reduction will also help you to feel better about your breasts again.
How is a breast reduction done?
The surgery takes about two hours, and you will need to stay overnight at the clinic where you will have your operation done. Just before your surgery, the plastic surgeon will draw out the treatment plan on your breasts. You will then be given a general anaesthetic.
A wedge-shaped section of the skin and gland tissue is removed from the bottom of the breasts. Afterwards, the nipple is moved up, and the areola may also be reduced in size. In this way, a smaller breast is created. Once your breast reduction has successfully been completed, the wounds are stitched and dressed in support bandages.
A breast reduction involves moving breast tissue up the chest and removing excess skin and breast tissue. Depending on the new position of the breast, a small incision is made in the skin where the nipple is attached. The breast is sutured from the nipple, straight down to the breast-fold. Sometimes the nipple is also reduced in size. Once the excess skin and tissue have been removed, the breast can be re-built. The wounds are covered with gauzes and a support bandage.
The scars on both breasts will be in the shape of an anchor. The base of the anchor will be in the natural fold of the breast. From the centre of that fold, the scar will then go straight up towards the nipple ending with a circle around the areola. Once the wounds have completely healed, the scars in the breast fold and around the areola will hardly be visible. The part that runs vertically from the breast fold to the nipple will still be visible.
You must remove everything that is loose, in or on, your body just before the operation — for example, dentures or other removable prosthetics in the mouth, contact lenses or a hearing aid. You should report to the reception on the day of your operation.
NB: Payment for your treatment should be paid in full no later than four weeks in advance.
When am I a suitable candidate for a breast reduction?
If you have large breasts, this can cause all sorts of problems. For example, you can experience back pain, pain in the shoulders or neck. Breasts that are too large can be an obstruction when things like sports. Large breasts can also make women feel ashamed. You are a good candidate for a breast reduction when you struggle with physical or psychological problems because of your breasts.
Before the surgery can take place you will consult with one of our consultants. A consultant gives free advice on all the possibilities within the practice. This advice is always personal and formed according to your wishes. During the consultation, you get all the time to ask any questions and indicate what you expect from the facelift. A consultation is always free of obligation. The methods and operating techniques will also be discussed in order to see what suits you best. Moreover, we will discuss what results you can expect, what the possible risks of this operation are and how the aftercare will look like. You always receive honest advice and you will be informed about the treatment and the period that follows.
During the second consultation, the plastic surgeon will also check whether you are a suitable candidate for a breast reduction. The surgeon will ask about your health, medical background and any medication. If you use blood-thinning medication, you must stop at least one week before treatment.
What are the benefits of a breast reduction?
Wear all kinds of clothing again
No more back/neck complaints
What can I expect after having had a breast reduction done?
You will stay in the clinic for one night after you’ve had your breast reduction done. Once your operation has been completed, you will be brought to the recovery room. There, your blood pressure and heartbeat etc. will be monitored. You will be in the recovery room for about half an hour. Then you will be moved to a bed in our outpatient room where you will stay the night. You may not leave until the following morning, and not without supervision.
You may take a shower the day after your operation, but make sure that the wounds stay dry. The bandages are waterproof and can be dabbed dry, and you should leave them on for two weeks. The bandages are placed on top of the sutures. The sutures may also not be removed, as they will dissolve on their own.
Other things you should think about are:
For the first two weeks: do not raise your arms, do not do any sports and avoid direct sunlight.
For the first six weeks: get plenty of rest and avoid physically strenuous activities – such as cleaning the house, vacuuming, cooking or lifting heavy objects. Also, you should not go swimming or visit the sauna.
You should protect the scar from the sun for the first year so that it will not change colour. Should you experience any redness or swelling, or develop a fever or have an open wound, or should you have any concerns, please do not hesitate to contact the Diana Gabriels Practice.