Busting common myths about breast reduction

Busting common myths about breast reduction

07th Oct 2019



Breast reduction, also known as reduction mammoplasty, helps reduce the size and weight of breasts that have become too large. The procedure is recommended for women who have excessively large breasts that create physical and emotional discomfort for them. 

The breasts are an essential part of the female body. The size and shape of the breasts mean a lot to women. The bad news is that the female breasts are subject to various changes. One of the common problems that many women experience is the overdevelopment of the breasts.

When the breasts develop beyond a certain point, they can cause physical pain for the patient, in addition to looking aesthetically unpleasant. Breast reduction surgery helps reduce the size and weight of the breasts by removing the excess fat, glandular tissue, and skin. While the procedure is now commonly performed, many people still take myths about the procedure seriously. Below, I will bust the common myths about the procedure. 


Breast reduction is just a cosmetic procedure

There is this widely held myth that breast reduction is a simple cosmetic procedure. However, the reality is that the majority of the patients who get breast reduction do so for medical purposes. 

Now, you may be wondering as to how breast reduction can help you medically. When the breasts become huge, their weight also increases. As a result of the additional weight of the breasts, the patient experiences pain in different parts of her body, specifically the neck, shoulder, and back. The pain becomes chronic and does not go away with non-invasive treatments. 

Most women who experience physical pain due to overly large breasts decide to get breast reduction surgery so that they can get rid of the pain. This is the reason why breast reduction surgery is not purely cosmetic. Even though the procedure can provide you aesthetic benefits by reducing the size of the breasts and creating harmony between your body outline and other physical features, the main reason why women get the procedure is to obtain medical benefits. Breast reduction has an impressive history of decreasing or eliminating the pain created by huge breasts.  


Health insurance does not cover breast reduction

Since many people assume that breast reduction is a cosmetic procedure, they also believe in the myth that health insurance does not cover breast reduction. The fact is that when you undergo breast reduction for medical purposes and not cosmetic reasons, your health insurance may cover the cost of operation partially or entirely. However, patients are advised first to confirm. In case the insurance provider does not cover the procedure, you can then ask the plastic surgeon whether they provide flexible financing options for the surgery.


Breast reduction is extremely painful

Many people also think that breast reduction surgery involves severe pain. However, this is not true in most cases. If your plastic surgeon is board-certified and experienced, you will not experience severe pain during the surgery or recovery period. The pain felt by most patients during the recovery period is either mild or moderate and can be managed with pain relief medications. Mild to moderate pain during the first two days following the procedure is normal and nothing to be concerned about. 

The pain also depends on your pain tolerance level. The pain tolerance level differs from one patient to another. The pain after breast reduction surgery subsides typically within the first two days following the procedure. In rare cases, the pain may become intense and continue. If this happens, you must get in touch with your surgeon because it might be a sign of an underlying complication like an infection. 


Breast reduction can cause permanent loss of breast sensation

Even though temporary change or loss of your natural breast sensitivity is normal after breast reduction, the procedure does not cause a permanent change or loss of breast sensation in 98 percent of cases. The nerves that maintain your breast sensation are located in the skin. During the operation, incisions are made on the skin, and a part of the skin is removed. During this process, the nerves may be injured or damaged, which can cause a change or loss of breast sensation. However, as you heal, the nerves will heal and regenerate, and you will regain your natural breast sensitivity. However, in rare cases where the damage done to the nerves is severe, the change or loss of breast sensation may be permanent. 


It can leave horrible scars on the breasts

There is also this commonly held myth that breast reduction surgery leaves horrible scars on the breasts. While scarring after breast reduction is unavoidable, it doesn’t mean the scar is always terrible. During breast reduction surgery, incisions are placed on the breasts that ultimately change into scars. The procedure cannot be performed without incisions and hence scarring. The good news is that the scar develops normally in most cases. A few months after the procedure, the scars will fade and become less noticeable. In rare cases, there is a risk the scars may develop abnormally and become more visible. 


You can’t breastfeed after breast reduction

Another common myth about breast reduction surgery is that the patient can’t breastfeed afterwards. Even though the rare risk of not being able to breastfeed after the procedure is always there, it doesn’t mean that every patient who gets breast reduction surgery will not be able to breastfeed. During the operation, the plastic surgeon will remove the excess glandular tissue from the breasts. Also, the milk ducts may be injured during this process. However, it cannot be said that the patient will not be able to breastfeed after the procedure. The glandular tissue and milk ducts heal in most cases and the patients can breastfeed. In rare cases, there may be a permanent loss of the patient’s ability to breastfeed.


Any doctor can perform the surgery

Many women who want to get breast reduction surgery think that any physician can perform the procedure. This problem is stemmed from the fact that all doctors in the US are legally allowed to do breast reduction surgery. As a result, many patients go to general physicians for breast reduction. But the fact is that not all doctors can perform the procedure. If you want to achieve the desired outcomes safely, you should consult only with a board-certified plastic surgeon who has extensive experience in breast reduction surgery. Board certification indicates that the doctor has undergone many years of training in general and plastic surgery. It also shows that the surgeon gets continuous education in plastic surgery. It is only safe to have the operation performed by a board-certified plastic surgeon. 


Brest reduction is free of risks

Many patients also believe in the myth that there are no risks associated with breast reduction and that breast reduction is a straightforward operation. Since the procedure involves incisions and tissue removal from the breasts, it entails risks just like other invasive procedures. The risks are higher for patients with health complications. You must discuss the risks of breast reduction with the plastic surgeon during the pre-operative consultation and undergo surgery only when the benefits are higher than the risks for you.


Recovery after the surgery takes a few days

Many people also think that breast reduction is a simple procedure and they can get up and resume their routine activities right after the procedure. In reality, breast reduction is invasive, traumatic, and risky. As such, the patient is required to go through a complete recovery process. The primary recovery period comprises the first two weeks following the procedure, whereas full recovery can take six weeks. You must be extremely careful during the recovery and follow the surgeon’s instructions. 


The breasts will become huge again after the procedure

There is also a myth that the results of breast reduction are not sustainable, meaning that the breasts will become large again after the procedure. Keep in mind that if you are aged above 20 years and avoid weight gain and pregnancy after the surgery, the results can stay with you for a lifetime. Make sure that your breast growth has become stable at the time of undergoing the operation.



The female breasts are exposed to many changes. One of the problems that many women experience is the overgrowth of the breasts. When the breasts become overly large, it creates physical and self-esteem issues for the patient. Breast reduction surgery effectively decreases the breast size and weight and thereby eliminates the physical pain linked with the large breasts. It also makes the breasts aesthetically appealing. But many patients are not aware of the facts about the procedure. As such, they believe in the myths. In this article, I have busted the common myths about breast reduction. 


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