Breast Reduction

Dr. Rodriguez performed a Breast Reduction using the single vertical scar technique along with tummy tuck and liposuction on this 39-year-old woman in Baltimore, Maryland.

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What is a Breast Reduction?

by Dr. Ricardo L Rodriguez

Breast Reduction is a plastic surgery procedure that lifts the breast and makes them smaller. Because it's used to relieve symptoms of back pain, neck pain, breast pain and other medical problems associated with having large breasts, it is considered a reconstructive surgery and is often covered by insurance.

Who benefits most from the breast reduction procedure?

If your breasts sag but you are happy with the size when wearing a bra, you are better off with a breast lift or mastopexy. If you feel like your breasts are too large or uneven,  causing back or neck pain, or if you have a difficult time finding clothes that fit or playing sports, then you are an ideal candidate for breast reduction.

Can I have another procedure, like a tummy tuck, at the same time as my breast reduction?

Yes, many patients elect to have liposuction or a tummy tuck performed at the same time so that the lower body will complement their new, smaller breast size. Combination procedures involving the breast and tummy are often referred to as the Mommy Makeover.

What is involved in the breast reduction procedure?

My breasts are so large that I have back pain.

a Baltimore patient

Dr. Rodriguez prefers to perform the procedure under IV anesthesia , instead of General Anesthesia. The use of IV anesthesia (instead of General Anesthesia) eliminates much of the nausea in the post operative period. During the procedure, excess skin and breast tissue is removed. The nipple is left attached to remaining breast tissue and moved to a new position to match the new smaller breast size.

To close and lift the breast Dr. Rodriguez uses the vertical technique. He does not use the 'inverted T' scar (Weiss pattern) for skin closure. Dr. Rodriguez feels that the horizontal scars underneath the breast are not only unattractive, but they also have a tendency to broaden or become thick. Additionally, he feels the Weiss technique makes the breast flatter with less projection,  because of the horizontal scar. 

For breast reduction Dr. Rodriguez always uses the vertical scar or lollipop incision. He has been performing this vertical breast reduction technique since 1989, after visiting Dr. Claude Lassus in France, who invented the vertical scar technique procedure in 1977. He is well known French Plastic Surgeon located in Nice, France who performed thousands of vertical scar breast reductions during his career. In the 70's and 80's French women were known to frolic topless on southern French beaches such as Nice, France, and minimum scarring was crucial to them. With Dr. Lassus' technique there is less scarring and also a more youthful, perkier shape over the long term.

What is the vertical breast reduction technique?

Dr. Rodriguez's vertical reduction technique carefully provides for the minimum amount of scarring. You will not have any horizontal scars. Dr. Rodriguez uses the vertical scar technique, which eliminates the horizontal scars under the breast used in other techniques. The vertical incision also gives a more youthful and perky shape to the breast. Dr. Rodriguez explains more about why the single vertical scar technique is superior to the traditional Weiss breast reduction technique in his blog article about breast reduction with less scars and better shape. 

How long is the recovery for breast reduction surgery?

Patients should plan to take off one to two weeks of time from work. Exercise can resume after 4 weeks.

What is the cost of the breast reduction procedure?

The surgeon's fee for breast reduction is $3500-$4000 and includes 90 days of post operative office visits. Additional costs include the OR fee, anesthesia fee, and post op medications. In most cases, insurance carriers will reimburse the majority of the cost of the procedure as long as a certain amount of breast tissue is removed. On average, insurance companies are looking for a removal of at least 500cc of breast tissue from each breast in order to be considered a covered procedure. Dr. Rodriguez does not participate with insurance, but he will submit the claim after the surgery, so that they can reimburse you directly.

Breast Reduction Before and After Photos

See our patient gallery of Breast Reduction Before and After Photos, all performed by Dr. Ricardo Rodriguez, a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon with over 20 years experience. Please note that all of these patients have given written consent to use their photos at our web site. We are very grateful for their participation in patient education!