Female breast reduction is an operation performed to reduce the weight and the volume of the breasts. During this operation, fat, tissue, and skin are removed from the breasts, and afterwards they are reshaped. The nipples are also repositioned. A woman’s breast size is determined by genes, hormones, frame sized, and weight. For many women, their breasts are in proportion with the rest of their body, but some women’s breasts are particularly large. Some women may also develop asymmetry in the breasts, where one is a different size or shape than the other. Should you have a breast reduction operation?
A breast reduction operation can be perfect for women who are not happy with the shape, weight, or droop of their breasts. The operation will help to make the breasts smaller, and give a more lifted appearance. However, breast size will change with your body weight, so if you put on weight or become pregnant after you’ve had the surgery your breasts may get larger. It is also possible for men to have breast reduction surgery to treat gynaecomastia.
Whether the operation is available on the NHS or not will vary depending on the policy of your local clinical commissioning group. If the surgery is wanted to simply alter one’s appearance rather than for health reasons, it won’t usually be available on the NHS. Instead, you’ll need to pay for your own private treatment.
To get surgery on the NHS, you’ll need to be referred by your GP. You’ll then have a consultation with a breast/plastic surgeon and perhaps even an assessment by a psychiatrist or psychologist. They will consider if there is enough social, psychological, and physical benefit to justify the surgery. For example, if your breasts were causing you pain and mental problems, you would likely have the surgery done on the NHS.
The final decision will usually be made by the cosmetic exclusion panel of the local CCG. They will take into account all of the information from your assessments and consider your individual case.
You may be considered for breast reduction on the NHS if you suffer from the following ailments:
Grooves caused by bra straps on your shoulders.
Inability to exercise.
Big breasts can also cause psychological distress. This could be the inability to wear nice clothes, or finding it difficult to stay active. Unwanted attention and harassment are common too, which can lead to women becoming self conscious and depressed. If any of these symptoms relate to you, then you could be a candidate for breast reduction surgery on the NHS or in a private clinic like ABSAMC.
It’s important that you’re aware of all of the risks before going through with the surgery. You may experience scarring, unevenly shaped breasts or nipples, problems with healing, loss of sensation in the nipple, and not ever be able to breastfeed. If the pros outweigh the cons for you then you should go ahead with the operation. You should never go into surgery lightly, so make sure you’re well prepared with realistic expectations before you go ahead!