“Reduction mammaplasty”, or breast reduction, is a plastic surgery procedure to make heavy breasts smaller, lighter and improve the breast shape and position. It is one of the most successful plastic surgery procedures performed.
Large breasts often cause significant discomfort, particularly of the neck, back and shoulders, as well as causing long-term postural problems and skin irritation under the breast folds. Disproportionately large breasts are often also embarrassing, particularly in younger women, and these factors together can make having large breasts a significant body barrier to taking part in exercise.
Breast reduction is one of the most well received plastic surgery procedures performed, at all ages. Most woman who have have this surgery later in life make the comment that they wish they had the surgery years earlier. Dr Merten performs breast reductions on women from their late teens, through to their 70s.
Breast reduction is great benefit by making the breasts smaller and lighter, which allows them to sit higher on the chest and reduce the drag from low, heavy breasts on the neck and back. In most breast reductions, Dr Merten removes between 500 g and 1000g of tissue from each breast, but has removed up to 3 kg from each breast in extreme cases.
As well as the physical benefits, breast reduction has been well proven to have a wide range of other benefits, including in feelings of well-being, confidence, improved exercise ability and general improvement in quality of life. As such, breast reduction has recognition under Medicare, and rebates apply to this surgery.
If your concern is loss of shape and position, rather than size, then a breast lift (mastopexy) may be a more suitable procedure. The surgical techniques are similar, without removing breast tissue or making the breasts smaller. Dr. Merten will discuss the surgical options available and recommend the best approach for you.
How is a breast reduction done?
Dr. Merten specialises in the most modern breast reduction techniques, which he believes have much better shape with less scars than traditional methods. Dr. Merten was one of the first surgeons in Sydney to regularly perform “short scar“ breast reductions and is one of the most experienced surgeons in Australia in these techniques. He has an international reputation for his skill and expertise in breast reduction, and now trains the next generation of Australian and international plastic surgeons in these advanced techniques.
Breast reduction operations are done in hospital, under general anaesthetic, and take between two and three hours. In the surgery, Dr. Merten removes excess breast tissue to make the breast a more proportionate size, lifts the nipples and reshapes the breasts into a more youthful and aesthetic shape.
Dr. Merten will discuss the potential complications and possible risks of surgery, and how these would be managed; this allows you to make an informed decision. A second consultation is done closer to the surgery date, to ensure the right choices have been made for you.
Breast reduction fees are partially rebateable from Medicare and your health insurance.