Breast reduction after pregnancy

Breast reduction after pregnancy

16th Jun 2019



Pregnancy is one of the leading factors that affect the aesthetic features of the female breasts. When you get pregnant, your body goes through hormonal changes that lead to physical changes in the body, including the breasts. One of the changes that pregnancy introduces is overdevelopment of the breasts. After pregnancy, your breasts may increase in size due to the overgrowth of fat.

Breast reduction is recommended for many women after pregnancy. The procedure reduces breast size by removing the excess fat and skin. If required, the surgeon may remove the excess glandular tissue from the breasts. After the procedure, your breasts will decrease in size and any physical and emotional discomfort associated with overly large breasts will be alleviated.


How pregnancy affects breast size

Pregnancy triggers biochemical changes in the body, which in turn affects the size and shape of the breasts. Majority of females find that pregnancy causes their breasts to become huge and after childbirth and breastfeeding, the breast size decreases, causing the breasts to become saggy. But there are also many women who retain their huge breasts even after birth and breastfeeding.

When the breasts become huge, they not only look aesthetically unwelcoming and lead to lower self-confidence for the patient but also trigger pain in localized areas of the body like the neck, shoulder, and back. Women desire that their breasts should be ideally sized, complement their other body features, and look shapelier.

The breasts are the most critical aesthetic areas of the female body. They define your femininity, physical beauty, and overall body outline. But pregnancy can affect different aspects of your breasts, most importantly breast size. When the breast size goes out of proportion due to pregnancy, you may feel like your physical appearance has changed.

However, it is essential that you should allow enough time for your breasts to stabilize after pregnancy. Most women experience a decrease in their breast size some months after pregnancy and breastfeeding because the hormonal change in their bodies neutralize and their breasts become stable in terms of size and other changes.

In most cases, patients are told to wait for at least six months after breastfeeding so that their breasts can become stable. If your breast size does not decrease naturally even six months after pregnancy, then you may seek breast reduction surgery. In such a case, you should consult with a board-certified plastic surgeon who is experienced in breast reduction surgery.

The plastic surgeon will examine your breasts and diagnose the cause of your massive breasts. The doctor will also assess whether the overly large breasts are the result of excess glandular tissue or just excess fat or both. The surgeon will also evaluate your medical history and know your goals and expectations. Based on the findings during the consultation session, the doctor will then recommend you a treatment option and specify the best surgical technique.


Breast reduction after surgery

When the plastic surgeon determines that your breasts have become overly large after pregnancy and the condition is affecting your emotional and physical health, he may recommend you to undergo the breast reduction procedure. Every year, hundreds of thousands of women get breast reduction around the world due to the changes brought about in the breasts by pregnancy.

The pre-operative consultation is the time when the surgeon will decide on the surgical technique that will be used to implement breast reduction surgery. Two main surgical methods are used to perform the operation, based on the cause of the overly large breasts.


Option 1: The first breast reduction technique involves incisions on the breasts and removal of the excess glandular tissue and fat and the resulting surplus skin. This technique is recommended for women who have developed overly large breasts mainly due to excess glandular tissue.

During the operation, the plastic surgeon will first make incisions on the breast. The incision length and type depend on your surgeon’s preference, your goals, and the extent to which the breasts have enlarged as a result of pregnancy. After making the incisions, the surgeon will remove the excess glandular tissue from the breasts, which will then be followed by removal of the excess fat from the breasts.

After the tissue and fat have been removed, excess skin will develop on the breasts due to the vacuum created in the breasts by removal of the fat and tissue. If the excess skin is not removed, the breasts will become saggy. To prevent this condition, the plastic surgeon will remove the excess skin and then re-drape the remaining skin and suture and close the incisions.

Option 2: The second option is used where the primary factor that has caused the breasts to enlarge due to pregnancy is an accumulation of excess fat. Under this surgical technique, the plastic surgeon will perform liposuction on the breasts. Liposuction involves tiny incisions on the breasts. After placing the incisions, the surgeon will insert a hollow tube called a cannula inside the breasts and then move the cannula back and forth. This will release the fat deposits from the nearby tissue, which will then be removed with a suction pump or a special syringe.

The new liposuction techniques involve the use of laser and ultrasound technologies to liquefy the fat cells inside the breasts before removing them. In most cases of breast reduction surgery, plastic surgeons use these new technologies because they are less invasive and traumatic and reduce the surgery time considerably.

After removing the excess fat from the breasts, the surgeon will suture and close the incisions. In case removal of the fat from the breasts results in excess skin, the patient may opt to get the breast lift surgery that will involve removal of the excess skin from the breasts with the goal to make the breasts firmer and youthful.


Breast reduction before and after pregnancy

Many women wonder whether they should get breast reduction before or after pregnancy. Breast reduction should ideally be undertaken after pregnancy and only when you no longer want to get pregnant again. Even though you can safely undergo breast reduction before pregnancy, pregnancy will reverse the results achieved with the operation.

Pregnancy leads to aesthetic problems and makes the breasts overly large. As such, it is only logical to undergo the procedure after pregnancy. After getting breast reduction surgery, you should avoid pregnancy. If you want to get pregnant again, you should defer your plan to get breast reduction until you are done with having children and have no intention to get pregnant again.

Even after pregnancy, you need to allow enough time for your breasts to stabilize and become normal. If you are breastfeeding your child, you should wait for at least six months after you stop breastfeeding before seeking the breast reduction procedure.


Recovery and results

After breast reduction surgery, you must complete the recovery period. Recovery following the operation can take many weeks and even months. For two weeks after the surgery, you must remain in bed and take enough rest. You must avoid physical movements during this period. For six weeks after the surgery, you must not engage in physically strenuous activities because they increase the risk of aesthetic and health complications.

The results of breast reduction surgery after pregnancy will gradually evolve. As your breasts heal and the post-operative swelling subsides, your breasts will appear aesthetically appealing and ideally sized, and the physical discomforts linked with huge breasts will lessen or disappear.

Remember, complete outcomes will not be immediately visible after the surgery. Your breasts will be swollen for many weeks or months, and the results will not fully emerge until and unless the swelling has disappeared. When the results finally become prominent, you will get a boost of self-esteem and improvement in your functionality. These improvements will help improve other aspects of your life, such as your personal, professional, and social life. You will feel more confident and be more productive when the results become visible. Also, you will fit appropriately into your clothes and be able to wear your favorite attire.



Breast reduction surgery is a major and effective operation that enhances the breasts and alleviates the pain linked with having huge breasts. Pregnancy is one of the primary causes for many to get overly large breasts. When you get pregnant, your breasts may develop to the extent that makes them look aesthetically unwelcoming and leads to pain in different areas of the body. Breast reduction after pregnancy can decrease your breast size by removing the excess fat, skin, and glandular tissue. After the procedure, your breasts will look beautiful and balanced in size and shape.

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