What does breast reduction surgery involve?

Breast reduction surgery may last for about three to three and a half hours, and includes portions of the breast and extra skin being removed. The nipple areola, which stretched out when the breasts got bigger and saggy, is made smaller and more appropriate in size. The entire breast is taken down and repositioned in a higher position.

Patients do not have to be admitted to the hospital for this procedure as it can be done on an outpatient basis. Patients go home following the surgery and generally do not experience much discomfort or too many complications. The surgery is generally performed under general anesthesia.

There are different techniques to perform the surgery. One of the main techniques is the anchor incision technique performed on patients who need a substantial breast reduction. An anchor-shaped incision is made around the nipple areola complex, and a horizontal incision is made under the breast crease. Thereafter, the excess breast fat, tissue and skin are removed. The horizontal incision may be avoided in a case where the breasts are not too large.

In some cases, breast reduction may also involve repositioning of the nipple and areola if the breasts have drooped down substantially. Sometimes the procedure may be performed in combination with breast lift surgery to achieve optimal results. This decision has to be a part of the treatment planning that is done prior to the surgery in consultation with the patient.

Some patients may not have very large breasts, so the breast reduction surgery in such cases may involve a minor incision around the areola. This procedure results in minimal scarring, but it is useful only when a small amount of breast fat and tissue needs to be removed. Dr. Edmund Kwan ensures that a conservative approach to surgery is adopted so that the desired results can be achieved with minimal risk and minimal scarring.

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