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What is breast reduction?

Breast reduction is a surgical procedure that involves the removal of excess fat, glandular tissue, and skin from the breasts, leading to a reduction in breast size and creating a bust that is better proportioned with the rest of the patient’s body. As overly large breasts tend to cause pain and discomfort for patients, a breast reduction can also address these symptoms. Garrett Wirth, MD, MS, FACS is known for his skills and experience with breast reductions in Newport Beach. Patients walk away with newfound confidence after receiving treatment from Dr. Wirth.

Breast reduction at a glance

  • According to data from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, a breast reduction can cost close to $6,000 (for aesthetic patients only). However, this average does not reflect the total price. Anesthesia, medical facilities, and other related expenses must also be factored in.  
  • The recovery period from a breast reduction typically lasts up to 8 weeks. However, the patient’s treatment timeline will vary depending on the status of their health and whether or not they follow the post-procedure instructions. Throughout the recovery period, patients will need to wear a support or compression bra.
  • Breast reduction surgery is typically performed under general anesthesia. This formulation will keep the patient asleep and free of pain throughout the procedure.
  • The surgery generally lasts anywhere from three to four hours. Some patients may require excess breast fat and tissue to be removed in order to create an aesthetic contour and close the wound. This can add additional time.

Who is a Candidate for Breast Reduction Surgery?

Women that are in generally good health and are interested in reducing the size of their bust are usually good candidates for a breast reduction in Newport Beach.

During the private consultation, patients have the opportunity to discuss the benefits, indications, risks, and other details involved with a breast reduction surgery, giving them more clarity on the procedure and helping them figure out if it’s right for them. A breast reduction can help patients that are struggling with:

  • Discomfort
  • Back issues
  • Soreness from bra straps
  • Limited mobility
  • Emotional and psychological stress

What does the procedure entail?

There are two approaches to breast reduction; traditional breast reduction and breast reduction with liposuction.

Traditional Breast Reduction

Anesthesia is administered at the beginning of a breast reduction surgery in order to mitigate pain and discomfort. Various incisions are then made in the area around the areola and the crease of the breast.

The incisions are usually made in the shape of a T or an anchor, moving around the circumference of the areola, down toward the crease of the breast, and then horizontally across the crease.

Once the incisions have been made, the underlying tissue is then extracted, the size of the breasts is reduced, the position of the nipples is adjusted, the size of the areolas can be reduced if needed, and all of the incisions are sutured shut.

Breast Reduction with Liposuction

Just like the traditional approach, liposuction breast reduction aims to reduce the size of the breasts. However, this version is carried out using only liposuction techniques. No long incisions need to be made, meaning that no long scars are left on the breasts. These attributes mean that it is a shorter surgery, taking only an hour to perform. Beyond that, the recovery period is faster, and there are fewer complications.

This approach to breast reduction is better suited for women who only need a small portion of their breast tissue extracted. This liposuction procedure is not designed to correct sagging breasts.

The procedure involves making two small incisions in each breast, about 6 millimeters in length, by which liposuction can be carried out to remove excess tissues while keeping the nerves and blood vessels of the area preserved. Once enough tissue has been extracted, the incisions are sutured closed. The exact same amount of tissue is removed from both breasts, ensuring that symmetry is maintained. 

Incisions and scarring

  • Periareolar — For women who only need a small amount of breast tissue removed, incisions can be made in the darker pigments of the areolas, keeping all scarring obscured.
  • Lollipop — This method involves making an incision that encircles the areola and then heads down vertically toward the crease of the breast. This approach is great for patients who only require a small amount of breast tissue to be excised.
  • Anchor — With this technique, the incision wraps around the areola, goes down vertically to the breast crease, and then goes horizontally across the inframammary fold. Women who are dealing with a severe amount of excess breast tissue can benefit from this method. Any scars associated with this method can be hidden in the inframammary fold.

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What is the recovery timeline like?

1-3 days post-surgery

After undergoing a breast reduction in Newport Beach, patients will be able to return home the same day. Discomfort, swelling, and irritation around the treatment sites are all normal and to be expected. The patient is given an elastic bandage or support bra to help mitigate swelling and give support to the redefined breasts. Patients usually feel sleepy for these few days and should refrain from taking a shower until 48 hours have elapsed. 

1-2 weeks post-surgery

From the 5 to 14 day-mark following the surgery, patients may still feel exhausted throughout the day, especially if they are taking any pain medications.  Patients should allow themselves to rest as much as possible. Nonetheless, it is important to walk small distances periodically throughout the day. The body is still healing at this point, which demands a lot of energy. Throughout this period of time, swelling starts to dissipate, although some bruising will persist. 

2-4 weeks after the surgery

By two to four weeks after the procedure, patients will be able to start getting back to their daily routines, though certain motions may cause the patient discomfort. It is normal to experience some itchiness while the incisions are healing. By this point, the swelling should be greatly reduced, but patients will still need to wear a soft bra without an underwire.

Patients will be given the green light to get back to most of their daily activities, but they must continue avoiding strenuous activity, especially that which induces movement of the chest muscles. 

4-6 weeks following the procedure

Once a full month has passed, patients find that their full energy capacity has returned, and they now feel comfortable getting back to all aspects of their lives. Any dissolvable stitches that were employed will have disintegrated by this point. 

It is at this time that patients will be given permission to start exercising again or taking baths, and it is usually ok to start wearing underwire bras again. By the six-week mark, patients will feel comfortable sleeping on their stomach or side again and will feel more comfortable using and stretching out the muscles in their chests.

What to expect from results

It can take several weeks for the final results from a breast reduction to become apparent, as swelling and bruising are still affecting the area. That said, the recovery process can take several months to finish before the final results settle in.

Generally speaking, the results from a breast reduction procedure are permanent. The tissue that is removed does not usually come back. However, it is important for patients to keep in mind that this procedure has no effect on breast sagging and, over time, the shape of the breasts may change due to the natural aging process. Beyond that, factors such as pregnancy and weight fluctuations can cause changes in the breasts. 

Patients are suggested to wear a supportive bra to help prevent sagging and other issues that may manifest in the breasts. Patients that see unwanted changes in the breasts down the line can opt to undergo a breast lift or a revision of their initial reduction procedure in order to keep their breasts in top form. 

Why choose Dr. Wirth?

A breast reduction procedure can vastly improve a patient’s quality of life. However, it is paramount that it be performed using only the most advanced surgical methods. Garrett Wirth, MD, MS, FACS, is widely renowned as one of the most skilled and experienced plastic surgeons in the Newport Beach area. He is well known for his precision at creating round, youthful breasts that have a totally natural look.

A leader in the world of aesthetic plastic surgery, Dr. Wirth is valued by young surgeons as an expert educator and professional who commits his time to aiding people in achieving a higher quality of life. Patients can put their faith in his care.

Dr. Wirth is the optimal choice for patients that are seeking a breast reduction in Newport Beach or the nearby areas. The procedure is able to address a myriad of uncomfortable physical issues that result from overly large breasts while also mitigating troubling emotional issues, as well. Call us today to set up a consultation and learn more about this life-changing procedure.

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What is the cost of a breast reduction procedure? 

A breast reduction procedure usually costs around $6,000 (not including extra fees). During the private consultation, patients can discuss all the fees that come with their procedure.

Breast Reduction FAQs

Is breast reduction covered by insurance?

If the procedure is considered cosmetic, it will not be covered by insurance. Patients will have to provide exhaustive evidence to their insurance provider in order to prove the need for a reconstructive breast reduction procedure.

Is it possible to incorporate a lift with a breast reduction?

Yes. Patients who would like to lift their breasts to a perkier position can do so while simultaneously having excess tissue removed.

Are there any risks associated with breast reduction surgery?

As with any surgical procedure, breast reduction surgery comes with risks. These include everything from tape allergies to blood clots.

Is breast reduction surgery painful?

The surgery is performed under general anesthesia, ensuring that patients are numb throughout the treatment. However, there is some pain and discomfort throughout the recovery process.

Can I wear a bra after breast reduction surgery?

Patients will have to wear a compression bra before returning to a wire bra. They should wait 6 weeks before switching back.

Do breast reductions fix asymmetry?

Yes. With a reduction procedure, any asymmetry in the breasts can be addressed, as a larger breast can be reduced in size or reshaped to match the other one.

Are there any potential complications?

Yes. Infections and loss of sensation in the nipples are both potential complications with breast reduction surgery.

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