There’s no secrecy surrounding breast augmentation anymore. Most women these days feel comfortable enough to openly express a desire for bigger breasts and a larger cup size, and their men usually nod in agreement. So why in the world would someone want a breast reduction? Doesn’t that go against the trend for augmentation? Believe it or not, some women and men alike may really believe less is best when it comes to breast size.
Also known as reduction mammaplasty, breast reduction surgery is sought by women when the size of their breasts is out of line with their body proportion or when there is discomfort associated with the weight of the breasts (macromastia). Women with larger breasts (usually with an excess of 500 gm/1 lb per breast) complain of neck and back pain and deep bra strap indentations along the shoulders. The excess breast weight accelerates sagging, making yeast rashes under the breasts a common occurrence.
Techniques for breast reduction vary, but according to Gilbert Lee, MD at Changes Plastic Surgery & Spa, the most common procedure for mammaplasty in women involves an anchor-shaped incision that circles the areola, extends downward, and follows the natural curve of the crease beneath the breast. The second most common technique called a “vertical reduction” utilizes a scar around the areola which extends vertically down to the bottom of the breast. Dr. Lee removes excess glandular tissue, fat, and skin, and moves the nipple and areola into their new position. “Breast reduction patients are among the most satisfied patients,” states Dr. Lee. And indeed statistics from the American Society of Plastic Surgery (ASPS) confirm breast reduction patient satisfaction to be among the highest in the field.
Other than offering their personal preferences for female breast size, why are men included in this discussion on breast reduction? Because men can experience excess breast tissue as well. A condition called gynecomastia,(Greek origin meaning “woman’s breast”) is seen when there is enlargement of benign male breast tissue. According to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASPS), male breast reduction surgery is the fourth most popular cosmetic procedure for men. Whether affecting only one breast or both, gynecomastia can be a source of self-consciousness and even embarrassment.
Dr. Lee sees a number of male patients yearly for correction of gynecomastia. He uses Ultrasound Assisted Lipectomy (UAL) to remove the excess fat and/or glandular tissue from the male breasts. The procedures are performed through tiny puncture sites rather than incisions. In extreme cases, skin and breast tissue are surgically excised. The effect is a flatter, firmer and more contoured chest.
Whether male or female, if you have bigger breasts than you need- your proverbial cup runneth over- investigate the benefit of breast reduction surgery. For women and men alike who have undergone breast reduction procedures, the results are more than just a decrease in breast size- patients report an increase in self-esteem and a better body image overall. We’ll raise a cup to that!