Want A Breast Reduction Or Lift? Here’s What To Consider

breast reductionPhoto Credit: Shutterstock

HB: What are some of the main reasons someone would seek breast reduction surgery or breast lift?

Patients seeking breast reduction surgery or reduction mammoplasty typically have a multitude of reasons. These often include the breasts being heavy, causing limitations in physical activity or neck and back pain, inability to find well-fitting bras or clothes, indentations in the shoulders from their bras, otherwise known as “shoulder grooving”, and other reasons can include rashes, skin breakdown or excessive sweating underneath the breasts as well.

Those seeking a breast lift or mastopexy oftentimes do not like the sagginess or ptosis of the breasts, which can be from simple aging, breastfeeding or significant weight loss.

HB: What are the main things you take into consideration when performing a breast reduction surgery or lift?

When performing a reduction, I take into consideration how much breast volume is present and what cup size the patient would like to be, I also consider the patients’ overall body habitus making sure the final result will aesthetically fit with their body frame and finally, I consider the health and weight of the patient as I ask patients to be a body mass index (BMI) of 35 or less and are not tobacco users.

For a lift I consider many of the same things, however, I consider breast volume in a different context, namely if they don’t have enough volume, they may need to add an implant to replenish volume, which is called as augmentation-mastopexy.

breast liftPhoto Credit: Shutterstock

HB: What does recovery look like?

Recovery is actually very straightforward. Most patients are back to normal daily activities or work, depending on what they do, within one to two weeks. However, I require patients to refrain from heavy upper body activity i.e. upper body workouts for about four weeks.

HB: Are there different types of methods to approaching breast reduction surgery/lift?

There are different approaches to breast reductions depending on the volume and sagginess of the breasts. If the breasts have a fairly good shape and mostly consist of fat, we can perform pure liposuction. However, if the nipples are out of position or there is excess skin, an incision typically needs to be made to obtain a good aesthetic result.

In regard to a breast lift, what type of incision is used is highly dependent on how far the nipples need to be raised as well as how much loose or ptotic skin and breast tissue exist.

HB: Are there any complications related to these procedures?

Overall complications are quite low, however, there are a few complications that can occur that patients need to be aware of. The most common issue, although still slight, is there may be a small area of wound breakdown that may take extra time to heal. About 15% of women may lose some or all sensation of the nipple and in child-bearing age women, there may develop an inability to breastfeed. Nipple loss is an extremely rare complication, typically seen only in very large breast reductions.

For more information, visit Dr. Michael P. Ogilvie, MD, MBA's social media: