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Treatments / Breast reduction

Breast reduction

Breasts that are imposing and heavy can be the cause of your torments. You may have the feeling that your chest is not in harmony with the rest of your body and that it can eat away at your confidence.
The weight of your breasts can ger in the way when you do sport or try to find clothes or underwear that you like…it is frustrating. Bra straps can in this case can cut into the shoulders or bring on back problems.
The breast reduction operation can offer you a solution to these frustations and sufferings. A smaller cup size will give you back the sense of freedom and self confidence that you have been deprived of.

What happens?

Its about not only removing the excess tissue of the gland but also the excess skin. The nipple is lifted upwards and most of the time it is reduced. The mammary gland is reshaped in accordance with the patients request and fixed to the chest muscle in order to obtain an aesthetically optimal result, in this way avoiding the settling of the breasts. In the case of extremely heavy breasts, the surgeon will have recourse with another technique.


A breast reduction cannot be done without scars. Currently ‘the vertical scar technique’ is the standard technique. The previous anchor scar has been reduced to a vertical scar. The scar around the nipple has not changed. This scar will gradually fade away with time.


As this operation is rather stretched out, it is carried out, for your comfort, under general anaesthetic. It consists of a light narcosis, enough to assure that you stay asleep, without pain, during the whole of the operation. You will be wakened about 5 minutes after the end of the operation and you will quickly come around. You will not stay asleep nor feel dozy. A complementary local anaesthetic will reduce blood loss and eventual pain.


The plastic surgeon proceeds with these operations in conditions of optimal security, surrounded by a professional team.

You are constantly watched over under monitoring by the anesthetist (automatic and repetitive measures of the blood pressure, constant measuring of the oxygen saturation, electrocardiogram). One or more highly qualified nurses will equally supervise.
The medical team rigorously observe sterility rules. During the operation you will receive preventively a mild antibiotic in order to avoid any infection. These surroundings will guarantee that you have faultless safety.
Highly qualified nurses will take care of you during an eventual nights stay at the clinic.

If you are taking coagulant drugs, please inform your plastic surgeon of this first (for ex. acetylsalicylic acid, aspirin, asaflow, cardioaspirine, dipiridamole, plavix, sintrom, marevan and others).

After the operation you are able to contact your plastic surgeon at all times on his personal mobile number, if you have the slightest question.


Normally, you will stay a one night in at the clinic for safety reasons. Before you leave the drain is removed and your bandages will be changed.

You will feel little pain following your operation. You will receive classic pain killers after the operation as like ibuprofen and paracetamol to help you cope with any eventual discomfort in the first few days after surgery.
You will be absent from work for about two weeks. The surgeon will issue you a certificate to this effect. The incapacity to work can eventually be prolonged if necessary. We recommend that you stay calm during the first week following your operation.

All sutures dissolve by themselves. Thus no stitches to be removed. After the surgery you will have to wear a support bra for a period of 6 weeks by day. A sports bra with a broad elastic band and adapted to your new cup size will do. After this period you will be able to wear again the usual underwear. Showering will not be possible before two weeks.

You will change your bandage after one week by yourself. The plastic surgeon will show you how to do this.

Risks and eventual complications

If you are in good health, do not worry there are no risks linked to this operation.

Your recovery can take longer if you smoke or suffer from obesity. Due to diminished vascularisation we can sometimes notice the forming of scabs around the nipple. And the vertical scar too will take longer to heal. With or without these complications the result be just as beautiful. Your surgeon will make his knowledge available to you in order to help you best.

Other questions on breast reduction

How can I choose the size that is best for me?
The majority of women want to get back an average breast size, this is to say a C cup. You will be able to discuss this with your surgeon in order to choose the adequate size, in harmony with the rest of your body.

Am I still  able to breast feed ?

No, seen as the nipple is raised and that the milk channels have been incised.

How about the sensitivity of the nipple?

It is impossible to know in advance. In the case of very large ptotic breasts, that aren't sensitive anymore, sensitivity of the nipple can return.

Do I have to have an annual examination?

No this is not necessary

How can I proceed with screening for breast cancer?

Just like before. The mammography and echograph can be carried out without any problem. Nevertheless you should inform the radiologist about your operation (notably on the subject of the internal scar tissue).

Related treatments

breast enlargement
breast uplift
inverted nipple


Surgery and consultations (after appointment)
A.Z. Jan Portaels
Gendarmeriestraat 65
B-1800 Vilvoorde
T: +32 (0)2 257 59 74

A.Z. Lokeren
Lepelstraat 2
9160 Lokeren
+32 (0)9 340 85 30

We consult in the UK and in Ireland
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