Nowadays most women will look for plastic surgery interventions to augment the size of their breasts to achieve their goal. However, there are women who need the exact opposite: a reduction in the size of their breasts. How can this be possible in a time when most people tend to believe that when it comes to the breasts and buttocks that “the bigger, the better”? Overly large breasts can have a negative impact on both the woman’s aesthetic appearance and also on her emotional condition. The breast reduction procedure can effectively and permanently correct this imperfection. However, scarring is one of the main turn-offs when it comes to breast reduction surgery. Breast reduction surgery Back, neck and shoulder pain, muscular pain, the deformation of the spine due to an improper body posture, the impossibility to sleep on the tummy, sagginess of the breasts… these are just a few of the complaints of women with overly large breasts. The breast reduction procedure is a plastic surgery intervention performed with the aim to reduce the size of the breasts. The reduction can be minor or significant, depending on the amount of excess mammary gland and the characteristics of the patient’s anatomy. Nowadays, breast reduction surgery is quite commonly performed. Famous athletes have benefited from its advantages over the years. The weight and volume of the breasts can be reduced by using a wide variety of surgical techniques. The main differences between them are the localization of the surgical incisions and the portion of the mammary gland that is maintained after the excess tissue is removed. The goal of the procedure is to improve proportions, position and the aspect of the breasts contributing to a harmonious and well-proportioned body. Moreover, by removing the excess mammary tissue, the quality of life of the patient is significantly improved as the symptoms related to macromastia disappear (back, neck, shoulder pain). The mobility of the patient is also increased. As is the case with any other plastic surgery intervention, it is important for the patient to be fully aware of what can be achieved with the surgery and to be very clear about her expectations. What happens during the breast reduction surgery: – The breast volume is reduced – The breast ptosis is corrected, and the breasts are elevated on the chest wall – The dimensions of the areolas are reduced and repositioned in a natural manner – Breast symmetry is achieved Scarring after breast reduction surgery The intervention takes place under general anesthesia and can last three or four hours or more, depending on the complexity of the procedure. There are different surgical techniques that can be used to reduce the size of the breasts. Usually, they are different depending on the size and placement of the incision and also the means to remove the excess mammary tissue. The scars resulting from the breast reduction surgery usually looks like an anchor or an inverted T. It has a periareolar trajectory that continues with a vertical median scar perpendicular on a slightly curb scar situated in the inframammary fold. The scarring is highly dependent on the amount of tissue that needs to be removed during the procedure. If there is a lot of tissue that needs to be excised, expect the scars to be significant in size. How to avoid bad scarring after breast reduction You might already know that each body heals differently. This means that the cicatrization process is different from patient to patient. One patient will have a fast healing, resulting in scars that look like thin, white lines and are barely noticeable from the surrounding tissues, while others might develop abnormal scars like keloid and hypertrophic scars. If you have undergone a surgical procedure in the past, this should give you an indication of how the cicatrization process works for you. Aside from a predisposition to bad scarring that is genetic, there are also rules that the patient needs to follow to avoid bad scarring after breast reduction: – Don’t smoke: the lack of proper oxygenation on the operated tissues can cause wound dehiscence and delayed wound healing. – Avoid ample arm movements: any pressure put on the surgical wounds can cause wound opening that usually results in bad scarring. – Don’t use any products on the surgical wound unless recommended by the plastic surgeon – Keep the surgical site clean and maintain a proper hygiene until the surgical wounds have healed. – Avoid putting on weight as it can cause the enlargement of the scars. – Drink plenty of water: skin hydration is essential for a fast and uneventful healing process. Your plastic surgeon will give you a list of recommendations about what to do and not to do to avoid bad scarring. It is also essential to make sure you go to the follow-up consultations as this will allow the surgeon to monitor the cicatrization process and intervene if abnormal scarring occurs. Conclusion Scarring is always a concern for plastic surgery patients, especially when it comes to complex interventions such as breast reduction surgery. Depending on the amount of mammary gland tissue to be removed, there will be more or less significant scarring. It is important to know that the surgical methods and techniques used nowadays are designed to reduce scarring and to facilitate a better healing of the tissues after surgery. Moreover, an experienced plastic surgeon will make the incisions as small as possible and position them in areas where they will be difficult to notice, such as in the inframammary fold. Scarring is unavoidable after breast reduction surgery; however, bad scarring can be avoided if you maintain a proper hygiene at the surgical site, avoid smoking at all costs, and also avoid sun exposure. Stay hydrated and don’t use any products that are meant to help with scar formation unless recommended by your plastic surgeon.