Questions About Breast Reduction Charleston

What is breast reduction surgery?

Breast reduction (reduction mamaplasty) is an operation that reduces the size of the breast and re-positions the breast higher on the chest wall. It is performed by Dr. Terranova to alleviate symptoms caused by overly large breasts (macromastia). Typically these symptoms are neck, shoulder, and upper back pain. Headaches are sometimes seen as well. The breast reduction procedure is performed under general anesthesia, usually takes 3 to 4 hours, and is done on an outpatient basis

Will breast reduction surgery relieve my symptoms?

Women with overly large breasts (macromastia) often have a particular set of symptoms including neck, shoulder, and upper back pain. Sometimes headaches are also part of the picture. If no other causes of these symptoms exist (for example, there is no shoulder bursitis or cervical disc problem), then breast reduction surgery will significantly relieve the symptoms in almost all cases. Lower back pain can also be caused by (or worsened by) macromastia, but the linkage is much less certain and breast reduction surgery may not alleviate low back pain.

Where are the scars from breast reduction surgery and what will they look like?

The incisions run around the areola, straight down from the bottom of the areola to the inframammary crease, with a horizontal incision of variable length in the crease itself. This is the typical “anchor” incision that is often talked about. Because the skin must be closed tightly in order to shape and support the breast properly, the scars are almost always initially quite noticeable. However, they will fade considerably with time. Dr. Terranova has seen many breast reductions years later where the scars are quite acceptable.

Will my insurance cover breast reduction surgery?

Most insurance plans will cover breast reduction surgery if surgery is documented as medically necessary. However, most insurance plans have numerous and very specific criteria that have to be met in order for medical necessity to be shown. We review these criteria with every patient to determine the likelihood of insurance coverage.

Is the breast reduction procedure very painful?

There will be moderate, but not extraordinary, pain for the first day or two following surgery. We will prescribe oral narcotics for you to take which will make the process very bearable. Most of our patients are taking medical doses of medications such as Motrin or Advil by the third day with appropriate pain relief. Most patients are up and around comfortably within a week.

Most surgeons use drains following this surgical procedure and many of our patients have heard or read that these drains are very painful. They are really not very painful, but Dr. Terranova has found that with careful surgical technique drains are not necessary and are therefore not used.

When can I return to work?

Return to work of course varies with the individual and the nature of the work itself. We find that most patients with sedentary occupations return to work in 2 to 3 weeks. Those with more demanding jobs will return in 4 to 6 weeks.

Contact Dr. William Terranova Today

If you have further questions about breast reduction and are in the Charleston, South Carolina area, please contact William Terranova, MD to schedule a consultation today.