What are the Pros and Cons of a Breast Reduction?

I’m 35 years old, 5.5 feet and 132 pounds, with big boobs that tend to be very painful. My plan is to get rid of my 36FFs and go for a full C cup, because it would definitely fit my frame better and improve my ability to exercise. I had a consultation with a board certified plastic surgeon in June, and he agreed that I should get it done as soon as possible. I waited this long because I needed the insurance to cover some of the cost of a breast reduction. I can't afford to pay for the whole procedure, and luckily, the insurance  company finally approved my request. I’m scheduled to have my procedure on November 2nd and I feel like I need to do some more research, so I'm prepared. So what are the pros and cons? Knowing what to expect will take a load off my shoulders. 

myjenny

F, 37, New Hampshire

Hi!  I had my reduction back in February and I went from a D to a C cup and it was the best decision I ever made.  Personally I do not think there are any cons.  I was always very self conscious and could not wear regular bras, always wore sports bras.  A reduction makes you more comfortable physically and aesthetically. 

You are going to be so happy with your decision, especially since you are active.  I could not run for 6 weeks and lift heavy weights, but a few days after the surgery I was back to walking.  I had minimal pain, all I needed to take was 2 Motrin and I was fine, I was even able to drive the next day.

Good Luck!  You will be so happy with your decision.

First, I have to say congratulations that your insurance finally approved your request! I had my breast reduction 7 years ago, and I still remember how long that process was, and how victorious it felt when I finally received the approval! Like you, I am a small framed person who struggled with very large breasts. For me, the pros have been the elimination of the constant back and shoulder pain and being able to exercise without having to duct tape those things down to keep from knocking myself out! It is much easier to buy clothing, as it is no longer a matter of buying clothes (especially dresses!) big enough for my chest, that are way too big for the rest of my body. I can wear button up blouses now without the dreaded gap across my chest, and I can buy cute bras at virtually any store instead of having to special order something that looks like my grandma should be wearing it. 

For me, there weren’t many cons at all. There were pain and swelling of course after the surgery, but I took the pain pills provided for the first five days and slept through the majority of it. At that time I was able to switch to ibuprofen and did not experience any major pain. A potential con is the possible loss of nipple sensitivity, but I have not had that problem. The last con I would mention is the possibility of not being able to breastfeed. I was finished having children when I had my procedure, so this wasn’t an issue for me, but if breastfeeding is important to you, it’s something I would speak with the surgeon about in making your decision. 

It has been 7 years since my procedure, and I still count it as one of the best decisions I have ever made!

There are many pros to breast reduction including improved posture, reduced discomfort, relief from the pressure and weight of oversized breasts, improved appearance in clothing, improved self-esteem and self-image. The cons for breast reduction are recovery and downtime, scarring, possible inability to breastfeed and temporary or permanent decreased nipple sensation.

Congratulations on the plastic surgery opportunity that you have been offered and are ready to take. It sounds like the pain that you are currently experiencing is intense. Technology offers so many benefits and the plastic surgery techniques used for breast reductions are better than ever before. I'm happy that your insurance company approved your request for help with the expense. 

Cons:

• Scarring - Some scarring will be experienced, and the type of scarring varies. Ask your plastic surgeon to show you some pictures of the type of scars that you should anticipate. Scarring as well as improvements in the contour and shape of the breasts should be taken into consideration as you view the before and after photos. Scar reduction techniques such as massage, silicone sheets and sunscreen may be used to reduce the appearance of scars. 

• Possible reduction in nipple sensitivity 

• Possible interference with breastfeeding

• Downtime after the surgery must be anticipated, along with some pain and discomfort. 

Pros:

• Improved size

• Improved shape and contouring

• Improved nipple positioning

• Lifted breasts 

• Freedom from the pain and discomfort caused by heavy breasts 

• Improved posture

• Say goodbye to bra strap irritation and indents

• Freedom from skin rashes and excess heat caused by heavy, hanging breasts

• Increased self-esteem

• Removal of self-consciousness or embarrassment caused by excessively large or sagging breasts