Some women may have health problems caused by the disproportionate weight of their breasts compared to their bodies. The weight of the breast tissue can cause back, shoulder and neck pain, as well as posture problems.
Breast reduction or mammoplasty is a reconstructive surgery that aims to relieve the physical pain caused by a strong breast and to reduce the weight and size of the breast. This surgery is for women who want to reduce weight and improve the appearance of their breasts and thus restore a proportionate breast.
Breast reduction surgery is used to fight against sagging breast, skin that collapses and becomes ptotic following pregnancy or significant weight loss. It also helps to relieve the asymmetry caused by a single breast.
During the procedure, the breast tissue and the excess skin are resected and the areoles are repositioned. A circular incision is made around the areola, a vertical incision to the breast fold and an incision that follows the contour of the breast fold. Following removal of excess tissue, fat and skin, the nipple and areola are set to their new position. The incisions usually have an anchor or inverted T shape.
Breast reduction surgery can last from 90 minutes to two hours, depending on the size and shape of the breast desired. After the surgery, the patient should wear a supportive bra for at least 4 weeks.
This procedure is performed under general anesthesia in day hospital and requires preoperative mammography.
Before surgery, Dr Ballieux will give you specific recovery instructions for breast reduction patients. While patient experiences vary, you can expect recovery to follow this general timeline:
First 1 to 2 Days
You will need a friend or family member to drive you home after surgery, to stay with you for the first 24 hours, and possibly a day or so longer.
Sleeping in a recliner or propped up with pillows will help minimize swelling. You can expect to be up and about the day after surgery.
Some temporary bruising, swelling, and numbness of the breasts can be expected.
You can use medication prescribed by your plastic surgeon to control discomfort, if needed.
Return to Work
Most patients are ready to return to their everyday activities within 1 to 2 weeks, and physical activities are limited for one month or more.
Breast reduction is a safe procedure. Complications related to breast surgery will be discussed in details in consultation.
Any surgical procedure carries some risk of infection, bleeding, skin loss, nipple loss or malposition, scarring, change or loss in nipple sensation and potentially an inability to breastfeed and reaction to anaesthesia.
All of these potential risks will be discussed with you during your pre-surgical consultation and you will be given a comprehensive list of pre- and post-operative instructions. Following these instructions carefully will reduce the chances of complication and improve your chances of a successful surgery.
Certain over the counter products and prescription medicines can cause complications before and after surgery. Do not take any medication containing or related to aspirin two weeks prior to your procedure. This includes NSAID’S, anti-Inflammatory medications, blood thinning medication. Please see your doctor regarding if and when to cease medication. This is not an all-inclusive list.
Also avoid Vitamin E supplements and red wine. Stop all herbal medications before surgery. The most common herbs used are Echinacea, Ephedra, Garlic, Ginseng, Ginkgo, Kava, St. John’s Wort, and Valerian. They may adversely affect anaesthetic drugs, prolong bleeding and impair healing after surgery.
Smoking increases the risks of complications significantly and should be ceased 6 to 8 weeks prior to surgery.
In many cases this procedure is partially covered by insurance. The cost for breast reduction procedures depends on the complexity of the procedure. Breast reduction on its own typically starts from 3,000 euros.
The Belgian Federal Agency for Medicines and Health Products forbids any before-after photos on the websites in Belgium, following a law that was passed on 25 March 1964.
An iPad with before & after pictures to illustrate the results will be available.
Very caring and helpful throughout my process, loving my breasts more and more every day.