Breast Reduction (Reduction Mammaplasty)

What is Breast Reduction Surgery?

Breast Reduction

Also known as reduction mammaplasty, breast reduction surgery removes excess breast fat, glandular tissue and skin to achieve a breast size in proportion with your body and to alleviate the discomfort associated with overly large breasts.

What happens during breast reduction surgery?

Breast reduction surgery is performed using incisions on your breasts with surgical removal of the excess fat, glandular tissue and skin.

In some cases, excess fat may be removed through liposuction in conjunction with the excision techniques described below. If breast size is largely due to fatty tissue and excess skin is not a factor, liposuction alone may be used in the procedure for breast reduction.

The technique used to reduce the size of your breasts will be determined by your individual condition, breast composition, amount of reduction desired, your personal preferences and the surgeon’s advice.


Circumareolar Reduction

A circular pattern around the areola. The incision lines that remain are visible and permanent scars, although usually well concealed beneath a swimsuit or bra. This technique is helpful for more modest reduction.

Circumareolar Reduction
Similar to a Benelli Lift, this breast reduction technique uses only an incision around the areolar. Through this opening, breast tissue is reduced.
Circumareolar breaset reduction scar
The scars are limited to a circle around the areola. However only minimal reductions are possible with this technique.

Vertical Reduction

A keyhole or racquet-shaped pattern with an incision around the areola and vertically down to the breast crease. It is a very popular method because the scars are kept limited while still powerful enough for a large reduction.

Vertical Reduction Mammaplasty
A vertical reduction technique uses a lollipop type incision pattern. The goal is to reduce scar burden but still reduce, cone, and lift the breast.
Vertical Breast Reduction Scar
The final scar avoids an scar along the inframammary fold. The vertical scar component heals very well

Wise Pattern Reduction

This technique uses an inverted T or anchor-shaped incision pattern. It is used in very large reductions where there is a significant excess of skin as well as parenchyma.

Wise pattern reduction
Wise pattern reductions are very popular, but result in more scars.
Wise pattern breast reduction scar
The additional scar along the inframmary fold can extend to the sternum and laterally to the flank. This depends on how much skin reduction is required.
Breast reduction with Superomedial pedicle Wise Pattern Technique

Removing tissue and repositioning

The nipple-areola complex remains attached to its original blood and nerve supply during the procedure. It is carefully repositioned to a higher position after the excess breast tissue is removed. The areola is reduced by excising skin at the perimeter, if necessary.

Underlying breast tissue is reduced, lifted and shaped. Rarely, for extremely large pendulous breasts, the nipple and areola may need to be removed and replaced as a free nipple graft.

Breast Reduction with Vertical Reduction technique on smaller side and Wise pattern technique on larger side

Closing the incisions

The incisions are brought together to reshape the now smaller breast. Dissolvable Sutures are layered deep within the breast tissue to create and support the newly shaped breasts; sutures, skin adhesives and/or surgical tape close the skin. Incision lines are permanent, but in most cases will fade and significantly improve over time.

Drains, consisting of a small, thin tube may temporarily be placed beneath the skin. This tube is used to drain excess fluid and/or blood away from the breasts.

To reduce inflammation and support the breasts while they heal, patients use a support bra for the first few weeks.

See the results

The results of your breast reduction surgery are immediately visible. Most patients feel significant weight reduction even in the recovery room. Over time, post-surgical swelling will resolve and incision lines will fade. Satisfaction with your new image should continue to grow as you recover.

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