Before & Afters
Breast Reduction in San Antonio, TX
Don’t let your overly large breasts cause you discomfort or embarrassment. You deserve to live a life without pain. You also deserve the chance to wear clothes that fit better and are easier to buy. Schedule your consultation with Dr. Baumholtz to learn if breast reduction surgery is a good choice for you.
Having a breast reduction can provide significant relief and greater self-confidence for women with overly large breasts who suffer from chronic back and shoulder pain or have difficulty finding clothing that fits and flatters. Very large breasts that look out of proportion with the rest of the body can cause even the slimmest woman to look heavy while also detracting from her overall appearance. As a board-certified San Antonio plastic surgeon, Dr. Michael Baumholtz uses the most advanced approaches to breast reduction surgery (also called reduction mammaplasty), tailoring each procedure to the patient’s specific needs, anatomy and expectations for optimal results and greater self-confidence.
What issues can breast reduction surgery correct?
Breast reduction surgery uses techniques designed to reduce the overall size of very large breasts while also reshaping them so they look more attractive and more in proportion with the rest of the patient’s body. Breast reduction in San Antonio can be a very good option for women whose large breasts cause back, shoulder or neck pain, for patients who feel self-conscious about the size of their breasts, for women whose nipples and areolas point downward as a result of the excessive weight of their breasts, and for women who have an asymmetry in their breast size, where one breast is noticeably larger than the other.
How should I prepare for my breast reduction surgery?
Prior to surgery, you’ll meet with Dr. Baumholtz to discuss your concerns and your goals in detail so he can determine if a breast reduction surgery is the best choice for you or if you might be a good candidate for other procedures either in place of or in addition to breast reduction. Depending on your specific needs, you may benefit from a breast lift to reposition your breasts higher, restoring a more youthful profile. In some cases, a breast implant procedure might be beneficial for women with asymmetry in their breast size. Many women undergo breast reduction as part of an overall body contouring procedure or along with liposuction to achieve a slimmer profile overall.
During your initial visit, you’ll also need to provide a complete medical history and Dr. Baumholtz will perform a physical exam and a careful evaluation of your breast tissue and the skin overlying your breasts. He’ll also take photos of your breasts to help guide the surgery. Be ready to provide complete information about your health and the health of close family members (including parents and grandparents), as well as a list of any medications or dietary supplements you’re taking and any prior surgeries you’ve had. If you smoke or take aspirin or other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications, you’ll need to stop for a few weeks prior to surgery to promote healing and reduce the risk of bleeding. If you plan to lose a significant amount of weight or you plan to become pregnant in the future, you’ll need to discuss that as well since weight loss and pregnancy both can affect the size of your breasts and the results of your procedure. Depending on your age and health history, you may be asked to have an EKG to evaluate your heart, a chest X-ray or a mammogram in addition to blood tests or other lab work.
What happens during a breast reduction procedure?
Breast reduction in San Antonio is performed as an outpatient basis at a hospital or surgical center and using general anesthesia. On the morning of your surgery when you shower, don’t use lotions or perfumes on your skin. Be sure to wear loose, soft, comfortable clothing to make it easier to dress following your procedure. When you arrive for surgery, your vital signs will be taken and you’ll meet with Dr. Baumholtz to go over your surgery once more and to ask any questions you may have about the procedure or your immediate recovery. Then Dr. Baumholtz will use a special marker to make lines on your breasts indicating where the incisions will be placed.
Breast reduction surgery often combines two related procedures – decreasing the size of the breast and bringing the nipple into a better, more youthful position on the breast. Most breast reduction surgeries use three incisions to remove excess tissue and then reposition the areola and nipple higher on the breast. Often the areola is reduced in size as well. One incision is made around the perimeter of the areola, a second incision is made down the center of the breast from the areola to the crease under the breast (the inframammary fold), and the third incision is made horizontally along this fold. Other incision patterns may be used depending on your breast size and shape, how much your breasts sag, the amount and type of tissue being removed, the location of your areola and nipple, and other factors. Once the incisions are made, Dr. Baumholtz will remove excess breast tissue and skin from each breast, making sure to “even out” the size of the breasts so they’re more or less similar in size. Although he’ll aim for symmetry between the two breasts, absolute “mirror images” isn’t realistic, nor is it natural-looking. In fact, Dr. Baumholtz is fond of saying that while he can make “good-looking sisters,” only Photoshop and Mother Nature can make identical twins. Next, he’ll reshape the remaining tissue and move the areola and nipple to a higher position when needed to create a more uplifted, youthful profile. In some rare cases, he’ll place drains (small tubes) in each breast to drain excess fluid away from the breasts to prevent pressure from building up behind the incisions.
Finally, the incisions will be closed and a surgical dressing will be applied, followed by a simple surgical bra or a special wrap designed to apply gentle compression. In most cases, breast reduction in San Antonio takes about two to three hours, and you’ll be discharged after spending some time in a recovery area for monitoring and observation. You’ll need to arrange to have someone drive you home and stay with you for at least the first night following your procedure.
For a few women who have fatty breasts without significant sagging and who only want to achieve a small reduction, liposuction alone may be enough to achieve an improvement in breast size and appearance. Liposuction typically is appropriate for only a small number of women who want a small change in breast size and would only be appropriate for someone who still has have very resilient and elastic skin, and whose nipples and areolas don’t need to be repositioned. Liposuction results in fewer (and smaller) scars than a complete breast reduction procedure, but it does nothing to improve sagging. Liposuction also may be used to reduce excess fat along the sides of the torso and the back (those overhanging areas of fatty tissue (sometimes referred to as “bra rolls”).
What should I expect during recovery?
Immediately after your surgery, you’ll be moved to a special recovery area. As the anesthesia wears off, you may feel some discomfort. Pain medication can help keep you comfortable. Before being discharged, you’ll receive specific instructions about how to care for your incisions sites and any drains that may be in place. You’ll also be wearing a compression garment to help reduce swelling and promote optimal healing, and you may be given a prescription for antibiotics to take. Once home, you’ll have restrictions placed on your activity, and you won’t be allowed to participate in strenuous activities or to lift anything heavier than about 10 pounds for about six weeks. You should also avoid raising your arms above your head, and you may need to have someone help you bathe and wash your hair initially. Until your incisions are completely healed. You’ll need to avoid baths (as well as hot tubs and swimming pools), although showers will be allowed. You’ll also be encouraged to walk every day to prevent clots from forming. When used, drains usually are removed within about two to three weeks after your procedure. You should expect to feel sore and tender in the chest and upper arms for several days, and bruising can take one to two weeks to subside. You may also have some numbness or itching around the incisions. You’ll increase your activity slowly over time, returning to full activity at about six weeks postop, at which time you can also go shopping for new bras. Wearing your compression garment as directed, drinking plenty of water and walking during recovery can help reduce swelling. It’s also important to elevate your head and back when sleeping during recovery to reduce both swelling and discomfort. Between three months and a year after your procedure, all swelling will resolve and you’ll see the final position of your breasts.
Does insurance cover the costs of breast reduction in San Antonio?
Some medical insurance companies do cover the costs of breast reduction surgery, especially when your breasts are causing other medical issues like back or neck pain. Insurance typically takes from six to 12 weeks to process your request for surgery. If your request is approved, the insurance company will determine how much tissue needs to be removed to qualify as a medically-necessary or non-cosmetic procedure. Many patients, including those with very high deductibles, find self-pay options to be increasingly reasonable. Our staff can identify financing options suitable for your budget.
Am I a good candidate for breast reduction surgery?
Breast reduction surgery can be a good option for San Antonio women who are in good health and who have overly large breasts that make them self-conscious, make them look heavier than they are, cause back, chest or shoulder pain, or make it difficult to find clothing that fits well. Breast reduction surgery can also help improve your posture, relieving pain in other areas of your back as well. If you plan on having children, you might want to wait to have breast reduction surgery since pregnancy can have a significant effect on the size and shape of your breasts and may alter the results of your surgery. The surgery also may not be a good choice for women with a history of irregular mammograms or breast masses, or for those with diabetes, cardiovascular disease or severe obesity.