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Breast Reduction Surgery Information

Oct 10, 2007
Women who have over-sized, pendulous breasts often experience not only some of the social stigma of having overly large breasts but also the physical discomfort from the sheer weight of heavy breast tissue. These individuals often have associated neck and back pain, rash and hygiene problems in the fold underneath the breasts, and painful grooving at the shoulders from bra-straps.

A breast reduction can dramatically change the size, shape, and feel of over-sized breasts by taking away the excess breast tissue and repositioning the sagging nipple and areola (the pigmented area surrounding the nipple) to a higher more normal position. A breast reduction not only helps to relieve neck and back pain, it can restore balance to the overall shape of the upper body, enabling you to exercise and wear different sized clothing.

A breast reduction is performed using an incision around the areola, down the middle of the breasts beneath the areola and also underneath the breast fold.

Of all the procedures that plastic surgeons perform, breast reduction ranks among the highest in patient satisfaction.

Your breasts are wrapped with an ACE wrap. Leave the wrap on for 72 hours after you get home. If the wrap is too tight, you can undo the ACE bandage and rewrap it more loosely. But, the ACE bandage should be snug and provide support for your new breasts. Also, the ACE bandage should cover the entire upper, middle, and lower breast. DO not wear it like a tube-top with cleavage showing up top. After 72 hours, you can take the ACE wrap off and shower. There is surgical tape over the incision line and these should stay on even in the shower. After the shower, you should wrap your breasts with the ACE bandage again. Absolutely no baths or swimming for 3 weeks. Showering is OK after 72 hours.

Take medications as directed. Do not take aspirin, anti-inflammatory medications (Motrin, Ibuprofen, Alleve) or Vitamin E supplements for 2 weeks after surgery.

No driving while under narcotic medications for pain.

Ask your plastic surgeon in your first follow-up visit regarding going back to work.

You should sleep on your back for 2 weeks following surgery.

Avoid alcohol or cigarette smoking for at least 3 weeks following surgery.

Call and make a follow-up appointment for 7 days following surgery.

Do not raise your arms over the level of your shoulder for 3 weeks. Do not pick up objects heavier than a phone book.

Bring a sports bra to your first follow-up visit. You will be able to wear a sports bra after your plastic surgeon examines you in the office. NO underwire bras for 3 weeks.

Do not apply a heating pad over your breasts. Portions of your breasts will be numb and you may get a burn from the heating pad. Cold packs in the first 48 hours following surgery is OK and may help to keep the swelling down. Apply cold packs over the ACE wrap, not directly over the breasts and nipples.

Scar therapy for your incisions will start at 2 weeks following surgery. Your plastic surgeon will instruct you regarding scar creams.

Keep your incision out of the sun. Sun exposure will make your scars red, raised, and persistently irritated for a long period of time. Make every effort to avoid the sun for up to 1 year following surgery. You can cover up the incision with sun screen (SPF 15 or above) or clothing.

You may return to normal activity and exercise at 3 weeks following surgery.

You may feel funny, tingling sensations over your breasts a few weeks after surgery. It may affect one breast more than the other. This is normal recovery of some sensory nerves in your breasts.

If you are constipated, take over-the-counter laxatives. You do not want to strain over the toilet. This may lead to your blood pressure rising and cause bleeding.
About the Author
Dave Stringham is the President of LookingYourBest.com, an online resource for plastic surgery. Learn more about breast lifts at NewportCosmeticSurgery.com or LookingYourBest.com.
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