Common questions about breast reduction incisions and scars

Dr. Rick SilvermanVery large breasts often are a source of several physical and psychological problems for a woman. Backaches, neckaches, headaches and spinal problems are just some specific examples of reasons why many women with large breasts consider a reduction to have breasts that are proportional to their figure.

Also known as reduction mammoplasty, breast reduction surgery consists of making incisions in the breasts, removing fat, excess glandular tissue and skin. The nipples and areolae are usually relocated to a higher position, with the areolae often made smaller.

While you will have scarring as the procedure involves sizeable incisions, there are ways to reduce their appearance.

Here are some common questions about incision and scarring from breast reduction:

What are the incision options?

There are two typical incision types to reduce the overall size of the breasts. The option Dr. Silverman uses will depend on the extent of sagging skin. Typically used for women with extremely large breasts, traditional incision breast reduction is an anchor-shaped incision that circles the areola and runs down to the breast crease and follows the crease a few inches in each direction, hence the name.

Who are good candidates for lollipop-shaped incisions?

Vertical incision breast reduction looks more like a lollipop shape, circling the areola and running straight down to the breast crease. This is usually for women who have moderately large breasts, creating a smaller scar than the traditional incision.

How can I minimize or reduce the appearance of scarring?

Either incision type will create scarring, but scars will improve in appearance over time. Scars will be pink for a few weeks before the begin to lighten. Be sure to follow all post-surgical advice, including leaving the steri-strips in place until Dr. Silverman removes them at your follow-up appointment.

Will certain bras and topical creams help with scarring?

It’s important to wear your surgical bra and then your support bra at all times during the first 4-6 weeks. Keep your scars out of the sun as the skin will be extra sensitive and sun exposure can make the scars darken. Dr. Silverman recommends topical creams like SkinMedica’s Scar Recovery Gel with Centelline to keep the area moisturized to minimize scar appearance.

To learn more about breast reduction and whether the procedure would be right for you, schedule a consultation with Dr. Rick Silverman at our Boston office by calling (617) 965-9500.

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