Written by Anza Goodbar (last updated December 8, 2021)
If you are like me, you just love Victoria's Secrets catalogues with the beautiful models clothed in pretty lingerie. If you are a well endowed woman, it is disappointing to discover those pretty undergarments don't come in a size that will accommodate your body type. The fashion industry has yet to accommodate fuller figured women with clothing that fits a more ample bust line correctly.
Having a generous bust line might also prohibit certain sporting activities like aerobics or running due to discomfort caused by the high impact activities. Participation in high impact exercises can increase neck and back pain and discomfort from bra straps holding the weight of a heavier bust line.
More and more women are opting to have a breast reduction surgery to relieve pain associated with larger breasts. Due to the health benefits realized post surgery, many insurance companies will pay all or part of a breast reduction procedure. Consult with a plastic surgeon to see what benefits are available.
Most breast reduction surgeries can be accomplished on an out patient basis. The surgery can last up to three hours under general anesthesia. While there are several incision techniques available, most surgeons use the "anchor" method. In this procedure, an anchor shaped incision is used to cut away the tissue around the nipple while keeping the areola attached the natural blood supply. Excess tissue is then removed from the breast and the skin is reattached to the nipple area. There can also be a vertical incision on the bottom side of the breast depending on how much tissue needs to be removed to reshape the breast. If the breast is excessively large or droopy, the surgeon may need to detach the areola and reattach it; this will cause permanent loss of sensation and possibly prevent the ability to breast feed.
Post surgery, breasts will be covered with a gauze dressing or elastic bandages. A drainage tube many be inserted under the arms for a period of up to several weeks. Breasts may be tender, swollen and even bruised. Scarring from surgery will be permanent, but will fade over time. Following surgery, have someone drive you home from the hospital. Recovery can take up to six months, but you should be able to return to work after 3-6 weeks if no strenuous activity is involved.
Most women are pleased with the outcome of breast reduction procedures. Benefits from the surgery include relief of back and neck pain, reduced pressure on the shoulders from bra straps, increased physical activity, improved self-image, and more restful sleep.
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