Large breasts can cause pain, improper posture, rashes, breathing problems, skeletal deformities, and low self-esteem. Breast reduction surgery is usually done to provide relief from these symptoms. Performed under general anesthesia, the two- to four-hour procedure removes fat and glandular tissue and tightens skin to produce smaller, lighter breasts that are in a healthier proportion to the rest of the body. Breast reduction surgery is not recommended for women who intend to breast-feed, since many of the milk ducts leading to the nipples are removed. This procedure is often covered by medical insurances.
Benefits of Breast Reduction
Women with large, heavy breasts may suffer physical pain from the weight of their breasts and may experience social discomfort due to unwanted attention to their breast size. Because of this, many women turn to breast reduction as a remedy.
Large, heavy breasts can also cause strain on a woman's body. The extra weight of heavy breasts can be harmful to posture and may lead to spinal problems. In addition to causing back, neck, and shoulder pain, excessively heavy breasts may also lead to breathing problems and other serious health issues. Breast reduction surgery can help a woman correct her posture and remove strain on the back, neck, and shoulders, reducing overall pain.
In addition to seeking relief from the pain caused by heavy breasts, many women seek breast reduction surgery because they are uncomfortable with the unwanted attention that their breast size draws. This unwanted attention may cause a woman to become uncomfortable with her appearance. Breast reduction surgery can help a woman regain her self-confidence and positive self-image, as well as provide the motivation to participate in a wide range of physical and social activities.
For many women, breasts are an important symbol of femininity that helps define their self-confidence and body image. The emotional affects of an altered appearance can be as psychologically damaging as the condition or injury that caused it. Breast reconstruction serves to restore a woman's body to its original condition after the treatment of breast cancer.
Breast reconstruction using the TRAM (transverse rectus abdominis myocutaneous) flap involves using muscle, fat and skin from the abdomen to recreate the breast mound after a mastectomy. This may be performed as a free tissue flap or pedicle tissue flap, depending on each patient’s individual case. The TRAM flap procedure produces a reconstructed breast that looks and feels natural, and also allows patients to benefit from a flatter abdomen as a result. Additional surgery may be required with this method in order to reconstruct a nipple and areola.
Many women undergoing breast reconstruction choose to use tissue expanders for natural-looking breasts that do not require any flaps or grafts. Through a series of appointments, the remaining breast tissue will be gradually expanded to accommodate an implant. The tissue expanders are placed during the initial procedure, which may be performed immediately after the mastectomy, or several months later, depending on the preference of the patient. They are placed under general anesthesia in a one to two hour procedure, and usually remain in place for four to six months.
Although rarely discussed, enlarged male breasts is a common condition. Gynecomastia affects approximately 40 to 60 percent of men. There is often no known cause for gynecomastia, although there has been some correlation with various drugs or medical conditions.
Men who feel self-conscious about their appearance are helped with breast reduction surgery. The procedure removes fat and/or glandular tissue from the breasts, and in extreme cases removes excess skin, resulting in a contoured chest that is flatter and firmer.
Candidate for Male Breast Reduction
A good candidate for male breast reduction surgery is any man who feels uncomfortable with his large breast size. The procedure can be performed on men of all ages who are in good health, both physically and emotionally. The best candidates for male breast reduction surgery have firm, elastic skin that will reshape well to their body's new contours.