What Happens During a Breast Reduction?

Women pursue breast reduction for all sorts of reasons. Maybe your breasts are naturally large and heavy, causing back pain and making clothes fit poorly. Or maybe you’re unhappy with the ways your breasts have changed after pregnancy and breastfeeding.

Whatever the reason, it’s worth learning more about breast reduction. It’s a popular surgery to change the size and shape of your breasts, and it gives you the opportunity to boost your self-esteem and eliminate discomfort.

Walter D. Gracia, MD, PA, and our surgical team specialize in breast reduction. Read on to learn how the procedure works and what you can expect.

Preparing for breast reduction

If you’re wondering if breast reduction surgery is right for you, start by scheduling a consultation with Dr. Gracia. Your appointment includes a comprehensive exam, and we review your symptoms and your medical history.

Dr. Gracia talks with you about your aesthetic goals. Together, you determine the best target breast size for your figure. There are a few different methods of breast reduction, and Dr. Gracia talks about your incision options to minimize the look of scarring.

Before recommending breast reduction, Dr. Gracia may recommend preoperative testing. You may need to stop smoking and stop taking certain medications before undergoing breast reduction. Our team gives you specific instructions to prepare in the days leading up to your surgery.

Steps of breast reduction surgery

Breast reduction is typically an outpatient procedure, so you probably won’t need to spend the night in the hospital. Be sure to bring someone with you to drive you home after your surgery.

On the day of your breast reduction, our team starts by administering general anesthesia and numbing your breasts. We ensure you’re comfortable in the operating room, and Dr. Gracia makes a few small incisions on each breast.

He removes excess tissue, fat, and skin to reduce the size and weight of your breasts. As the procedure progresses, he reshapes your breasts and relocates your nipples and areolas if needed.

Sometimes, Dr. Gracia places a surgical drain under the skin near your incisions. These drains are temporary and they’re there to drain excess blood or fluid as your body heals.

At the end of your breast reduction procedure, Dr. Gracia closes the incisions with stitches, surgical glue, or a combination of methods. We bandage your breasts, supply a support bra, and you’re then moved to a recovery room.

Recovering from breast reduction

You wake up from the anesthesia and our team continues observing you for a few hours. Once you’re discharged, you’re free to have someone drive you home.

The results of your breast reduction will be visible right away, but it’s normal to feel sore and swollen after the surgery. You will experience limited mobility, and you should avoid vigorous activity and heavy lifting for a few days.

Dr. Gracia prescribes pain medication for the first days of your recovery. As you start healing, he may recommend switching to over-the-counter pain relievers.

Be sure to attend your follow-up appointments as scheduled. Many women find that full recovery takes up to six months, and Dr. Gracia continues monitoring your progress as your breasts heal.

Breast reduction is a safe, effective way to eliminate the discomfort of large or sagging breasts. Find out if you could be a good candidate by scheduling a consultation with Dr. Gracia. Call our office at 817-336-9450 or request an appointment online.

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