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Breast Reduction

Women with large breasts or macromastia often suffer from multiple nagging issues on a daily basis. These issues include: chronic neck & back pain, rashes beneath their breasts, grooves cut into their shoulders by bra straps, poor posture and difficulty finding clothes that fit well. The breast reduction procedure has both cosmetic and therapeutic benefits; it tightens and reshapes the breasts while providing relief from physical strain of heavy breasts.

When to Consider Breast Reduction

Breast reduction is performed to:

  • Improve the size and contour of the breasts
  • Reduce chronic neck, back and shoulder pain
  • Reduce skin irritation and rashes that form underneath heavy breasts
  • Balance breasts that are of different sizes

Breast reduction has a high success rate and is sometimes covered by insurance. However, if you have a history of irregular mammograms, uncontrolled medical conditions or severe obesity, you may not be a good candidate for surgery. The best way to find out if surgery is right for you is to schedule a consultation with Dr. Burnett.

Breast Reduction Consultation

At your consultation, Dr. Burnett will conduct a thorough evaluation of your breasts with measurements and photos. He will review your medical history and discuss the likely outcomes of the surgery and the potential risks and complications.

Your breast reduction surgery may be covered by your insurance company if deemed a medical necessity. It is important that you provide the office with documentation of your symptoms. As a courtesy, Dr. Burnett’s office will submit the clinical information from your visit to your insurance company for a pre-determination of coverage.

Breast Reduction Surgery

There are many different breast reduction techniques. The right technique for your breasts will depend on your natural size and shape, as well as your desired results. The breast reduction procedures are performed on an out-patient basis, under general anesthesia. The procedure may require 1 to 3 hours of operating time.

The most common incision pattern is called the anchor lift. This technique is best for women who require a significant amount of tissue removal. The first incision begins around the perimeter of the areola (the pigmented area around the nipple) and extends vertically down to the breast crease. Another incision is then made in a horizontal line at the breast crease. Next, Dr. Burnett removes the excess glandular tissue, fat, and skin. The nipple and areola are then repositioned to a higher position and held in place by stitches.

Recovery from Breast Reduction Surgery

Dressings or bandages will be applied to the incisions after the procedure is completed. You will also be provided with a special post-operative support bra to minimize swelling and support your breasts as they heal. Some patients experience minor discomfort, bruising, swelling or numbness. You will return to the office in 7 to 10 days to have your sutures removed. You can usually return to work after one to two weeks. Strenuous activities should be restricted for 4 to 6 weeks.


The results of breast reduction surgery will be long-lasting. Your new breast size should help relieve you from the pain and physical limitations experienced prior to breast reduction. Your better proportioned figure will likely enhance your self-image and boost your self-confidence. However, over time your breasts can change due to aging, weight fluctuations, hormonal factors and gravity. The best way to ensure long-term results is to maintain a stable body weight.

Before and After