Breast Reduction

Women with very large breasts may experience a variety of medical problems as a result of excess weight of the breasts. The more common complaints include back and neck pain, bra strap grooving, as well as skin irritation underneath the breasts. In addition, many women find exercise and activity difficult due to the large size of the breasts. Some women, particularly teenagers, may feel self-conscious about having very large breasts. Breast reduction (reduction mammaplasty) is a surgical procedure performed by plastic surgeons to reduce the size of the breasts. Because it is performed for medical purposes it is covered by most insurance carriers.

There are a variety of different techniques to surgically reduce the size of the breasts. The most common is known as the inferior pedicle technique as show below. The nipple is raised and excess breast and skin is removed. The trade-off for smaller more shapely breasts are the scars on the breast. Liposuction of the breasts particularly the outer quadrants is sometimes performed at the time of breast reduction surgery. The exact type of procedure will depend on individual patients characteristics and desires.

Breast reduction

Incisions outline the area of skin, breast tissue and fat to be removed and the new position of the nipple.  

Breast reduction

Skin formerly located above the nipple is brought down and together to reshape the breast. 

Breast reduction

Scars are around the areola, below it, and in the crease under the breast.  

Before and After Pictures

Resource Links

Olson Center for Women's Health