Explore Breast Reduction Options.

What Is Breast Reduction Surgery?

Also referred to as reduction mammoplasty, breast reduction surgery is designed to remove excess fatty and glandular tissue as well as excess skin from the breasts and chest in order to reduce the overall shape and cup size of breasts. Breast reduction surgeries can provide a range of benefits to patients, including:

  • Reduction of breast size to align with a patient’s aesthetic ideals
  • Reduction of breast size and weight as a clinical treatment (i.e. to alleviate strain on the back, neck, and shoulders that may be caused by overly large breasts)
  • Reduction of breast size to improve patient mobility and facilitate physical activity

Breast reduction as a clinical treatment

As overly large breasts can cause medical conditions like chronic neck and back pain, there are some health insurance providers that provide cover for breast reduction surgeries. To qualify for this cover, however, patients must have medical documentation developed by their breast reduction specialist that demonstrates the procedure would have clinical benefits for the patient (i.e. the procedure would be performed to correct a medical condition).

Breast reduction surgery is also ideal for patients who may have restricted mobility due to their overly large breasts. Post-recovery, virtually all patients who have undergone breast reduction surgery have reported an improvement in their mobility, or even the alleviation of neck and back pain caused by larger busts.

Things to consider before scheduling a breast reduction procedure

Breast reductions are generally performed on patients whose breasts have fully developed, so most mammoplasty surgeons will assert that the surgery is best performed on adult women. Patients are also advised that breast reduction may affect their ability to breastfeed, alongside other complications. As a result, patients are required to schedule preliminary consultations with a licensed medical practitioner prior to scheduling a breast reduction surgery. This consultation is just to ensure that a breast reduction is the right treatment for you and will be able to deliver the medical and/or cosmetic results that you’re looking for.

As breast reduction mammoplasty is a surgical procedure that can include liposuction and anaesthesia or intravenous sedation, 2018 amendments to the Health Services Act 1988 stipulates that reduction mammoplasties should only be performed in Australia by qualified surgeons and only in clinics and facilities that are registered with state health departments.

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Breast Reduction FAQs.

Breast Reduction Average Cost Breakdown

Estimated prices do not include post-care, garments, consultations and any complications.

Item Min. Cost Max. Cost
Est. Total Cost $15,300 $31,800
Surgeon Cost $10,500 $22,000
Daily Hospital Cost $2,000 $7,000
Anaesthetist $2,800 $2,800
Surgery Time 3 Hours+ 3 Hours+
Hospital Time Day Surgery Day Surgery

As breast reduction surgery is performed under anaesthetic or with intravenous sedation, patients feel no pain during the procedure. During recovery however, patients are likely to experience slight pain and discomfort. These symptoms can be managed by following aftercare advice provided by your surgeon and taking pain relief medication.

As breast reduction surgery is best performed on fully developed breasts, most mammoplasty surgeons will advise against performing the procedure on patients under the age of 18.

Breast reduction surgery is a kind of breast augmentation procedure that’s designed specifically to reduce the size, shape, and weight of breasts.

Although the results of a breast reduction are technically considered to be permanent (as removed fat tissue doesn’t regenerate), your breasts can still change in size and shape post-surgery. These changes can be attributed to the natural process of ageing, or due to other factors like weight fluctuations or hormonal changes.

Most reduction mammoplasty surgeons will assert that your breasts don’t need to be a certain size to qualify for a reduction surgery. Instead, any patients who have reason to believe that their breast size causes physical and mental health issues can qualify for breast reduction.

As breast lifts are designed specifically to correct sagging or drooping breasts, it is considered a different procedure to breast reductions, which contrastingly involves the removal of excess skin, fat, and glandular tissue. Breast reduction and breast lift surgery can, however, be performed as a combined procedure, if your mammoplasty surgeon may deem it beneficial.

Mammoplasty surgeons assert that patients lose about 1-2 cup sizes on average from a breast reduction surgery, however some patients may lose more depending on the volume of skin and tissue that is removed during their procedure.

Both Medicare and private health insurance providers will provide cover for breast reduction procedures that are required for clinical purposes rather than cosmetic purposes.

After 18 months post-surgery, your breasts should be free from scarring. With a healthy lifestyle (including a balanced diet and regular exercise), you should be able to permanently enjoy the results of your reduction mammoplasty. The results of your breast reduction may be altered, however, by weight gain, hormonal changes, ageing, or pregnancy and breastfeeding.

Whilst many patients may undergo breast reduction surgery to correct a medical condition (i.e. chronic neck or back pain), there are patients who may opt to undergo the procedure for cosmetic purposes or to attain particular aesthetic results. It’s important to note, however, that breast reduction surgeries don’t provide permanent results, and your body will continue to change even following recovery. With this in mind, patients who are looking to secure a reduction mammoplasty as a cosmetic treatment are also advised to consider the following alternatives.

Alternatives to breast reduction surgery include:

  • Weight loss and dieting to naturally reduce breast size
  • Liposuction
  • Investing in fitted bras (to alleviate neck, back, and shoulder pain)
  • Psych or counselling sessions (to improve mental health and address body image issues)

As breast reduction surgeries typically involve making precise incisions and using liposuction to remove excess fat, patients can expect the procedure to take 3-4 hours on average.

Most mammoplasty surgeons agree that it takes patients 18 months on average to fully recover from a breast reduction procedure.

Prior to your preliminary consultation, it’s recommended that you research breast reduction procedures and determine what your ideal results and/or expectations are. Our Pirk Cosmetic Consultant will also provide you with a list of questions to ask your surgeons during your first consultation, as well as on the day of your procedure, and even post-surgery.

A typical breast reduction surgery will take 3-4 hours on average to complete, beginning with your surgeon making a vertical incision around the nipple and down towards the breast crease in order to remove excess fat and glandular tissue. Sometimes, a further incision may be made depending on the volume of tissue and skin that may need to be removed. Once excess tissue is surgically removed or removed using liposuction, the surgeon will then stitch up surgical wounds and conclude the procedure.

Some of the risks associated with breast reduction surgery include:

  • Common surgical risks (i.e. bleeding, infection, complications with anaesthesia, etc.)
  • Fluid accumulation
  • Damage to nerves, muscles, blood vessels, and other breast structures
  • Breastfeeding difficulties
  • The formation of keloids or lumpy scar tissue
  • Permanent skin discoloration
  • Fat necrosis
  • Breast swelling, bruising, and numbness
  • Potential total or partial loss of the areola or nipple

Although there is a risk of patients experiencing keloid scars or lumpy scar tissues following their breast reduction surgery, the majority of patients can expect any surgical scarring to fade or lessen over 18 months following their procedure. Heeding aftercare instructions provided by your mammoplasty surgeon can help reduce your risks of scarring.

Disclaimer: The information presented in this blog and on the Pirk website is intended for general informational purposes only and should not be considered professional advice. While we collaborate with qualified surgeons, we are not medical specialists, and the content provided is of a general nature. It is strongly recommended to seek personalised professional advice tailored to your specific situation.

If assistance in finding a qualified surgeon is needed, Pirk can offer support. This content does not constitute personal advice, diagnoses, or treatment plans. By reading our blogs, you acknowledge and accept these terms. For further assistance or clarification, please contact us at hello@pirk.au.

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