Cosmetic Surgery Tips

average cost of breast reduction in california

Breast reduction surgery, also known as reduction mammoplasty, is a type of plastic surgery procedure in which a patient has excess breast tissue, fat and skin removed to achieve a smaller and more proportional bust size. During this procedure, the breasts are reshaped by lifting the nipple and removing excess tissue from below. Breast reduction surgery helps to alleviate neck, back and shoulder pain associated with large breasts; correct breathing difficulties; reduce sagging; enhance your self-image; decrease breast heaviness and discomfort associated with overly large breasts; improve bra strap grooves that have developed on the shoulders over time; and increase clothing options.

The average cost of breast reduction in California is $5,000 (USD).

average cost of breast reduction in california

Having excessively large breasts can cause both physical and emotional problems for women. Shoulder, neck, and back pain can result from the weight of very large breasts, and the appearance of oversized breasts can cause embarrassment and lower self-esteem. A breast reduction can reduce the size of the breasts and make them more proportionate to the rest of the body. At our San Diego practice, Dr. Larry Pollack routinely performs breast reduction surgery to alleviate the emotional and physical problems associated with overly large breasts.

Am I a Candidate for Breast Reduction?

Ideal candidates for breast reduction are women in good overall health with some or all of the following conditions:

  • Breasts that cause emotional and physical problems
  • Breasts that are disproportionate in size and shape
  • Inability to participate in certain physical activities
  • Inability to wear certain types of clothing due to breast size

How Is Breast Reduction Performed?

Breast reduction is performed on an outpatient basis under general anesthesia. During the procedure, Dr. Pollack will remove excess breast tissue in order to reduce the size and reshape the breasts, as well as lift them to a more youthful position.

What Is the Anchor Incision?

The incision technique that Dr. Pollack typically uses for this procedure is the anchor incision because it is the most effective method for reducing extremely large breasts. This incision is made around the areola and extends vertically down to the bottom of the breast as well as horizontally along the breast crease. The anchor incision also allows Dr. Pollack to reshape the breasts for a more attractive contour.

In certain cases, liposuction can be used to reduce the size of the breasts. However, the breasts cannot be lifted with a liposuction procedure alone.

What Is Discussed During My Breast Reduction Consultation?

When you meet with Dr. Pollack for your initial consultation, you will discuss your goals and concerns with him in detail, and he will customize the procedure to fit your needs and desires. Dr. Pollack will answer any questions you may have and make sure you fully understand the benefits and risks of the procedure.

What Is My Breast Reduction Recovery?

After the procedure is complete, the breasts will likely swell and be sore for a few days. These symptoms are normal and can be eased by pain medication. While most patients return to work after about a week, exercise and strenuous activity should be avoided for at least a month.

As with any surgery, complications such as bleeding, scarring, and infection are possible. In order to get the best possible outcome, it is best to follow Dr. Pollack’s postoperative instructions.

When Will I See My Breast Reduction Results?

Once the healing process is complete, the breasts will look noticeably reduced with a more attractive contour. Once the final results become apparent, women are generally very satisfied with their new look. Not only do they feel more confident about themselves, but they find that they can perform activities and accomplish things that they were unable to do before.

How Much Does Breast Reduction Cost?

The actual cost of a breast reduction surgery depends on the factors such as the surgeon’s fee, facility fee, and anesthesia fee.

Does Insurance Cover Breast Reduction?

In many cases, insurance will cover the cost of a breast reduction procedure if overly large breasts cause pain and hinder daily life for the patient. Potential patients should contact their insurance company to determine if they qualify before undergoing breast reduction surgery. (Currently, we are only accepting Sharp Community Medical Group Insurance for breast reduction surgery.)

Frequently Asked Questions About Breast Reduction

What surgical procedures are commonly combined with breast reduction?

Breast reduction is always performed alongside a breast lift (unless there is minimal to no breast sagging following the removal of the tissues). Additional combination procedures include liposuction of the surrounding areas or post-bariatric surgery (if breast reduction is being performed after significant weight loss.)

Is a breast lift the same as a breast reduction?

While a breast lift is performed at the same time as a breast reduction, they are not the same procedure. A breast lift elevates sagging breasts by tightening the tissues. It also removes excess skin from the breasts. Breast lift surgery can be performed alone, with breast reduction, or in addition to breast augmentation or breast revision.

How can I prepare for breast reduction?

Breast reduction is performed under general anesthesia, meaning that you will need to stop all tobacco use for at least 10 to 14 days before and after your surgery. If safe, you will also be asked to refrain from taking any blood-thinning medications or supplements. This includes aspirin, ibuprofen, and NSAIDs.

Are my breast reduction results permanent?

Women choosing breast reduction will experience long-lasting results. These results may be impacted by future pregnancy or significant weight gain, and the breasts will eventually start to sag with age.

Women can prolong the quality of their results by maintaining a stable weight with a healthy lifestyle.

Can I breastfeed after breast reduction?

Breast reduction removes excess tissue from the breast. This process can potentially damage the milk ducts, making it more challenging to breastfeed. Women undergoing breast reduction before having children should be aware that, while it is not guaranteed, there is a risk of breastfeeding inability. Some women can produce a normal amount of milk; others produce some milk (that needs to be supplemented with formula), and, still, some women are not able to produce milk at all.

Breast reduction surgery today ranks among the more popular cosmetic surgery procedures in the US. During the pre-op consultation, the breast surgeon will explain to the patient about all aspects of the procedure and also discuss its estimated costs. The surgeon’s first goal will be to educate the patient and help her make an informed decision.

Breast reduction surgery costs will usually vary between two practices, and sometimes even between two patients at the same practice. In a few cases, the costs may be fully or partially covered under health insurance. Board certified plastic surgeon Dr. Eugene Kim provides breast reduction to patients in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, Santa Monica, West Hollywood, CA, and surrounding locations.

Cost Factors

The costs of breast reduction cosmetic surgery can be impacted by a number of factors. Key cost components in this surgery typically include:

  • Breast surgeon’s fee
  • Charges of the surgical center
  • Fee charged by the anesthesiologist or nurse anesthetist
  • Pre- and post-operative tests and mammograms
  • Prescription drugs
  • Surgical bra and compression garment
  • Post-surgical appointments with the surgeon

Breast reduction surgery is usually performed as an outpatient procedure. However, if the patient requires an overnight stay at the hospital, the cost will go up. Other factors that can affect the actual cost of surgery include:

  • Geographical location of the practice
  • Skills and experience of the plastic surgeon
  • Amount of breast tissue removal and complications in a particular case
  • Additional procedures, in any, such as breast lift or liposuction

Cost Assessment

Breast reduction surgery costs should be assessed in view of the quality standards and services provided at a practice. If the patient is being offered an unusually low price for the procedure, they should do their due diligence and exercise abundant discretion when evaluating such an offer. If hidden charges are involved, the patient may end up paying more in the end.

At the time of initial consultation, the patient should clarify all doubts and concerns about costs, and take even seemingly minor pre- and post-surgical costs into account. While surgeon’s fee is a key cost element, the patient should ideally choose a fully trained and board certified plastic surgeon with a proven track record.

According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), patients should select the right surgeon for her needs, and consider surgeon’s fee only as a secondary factor. Dr. Kim receives patients from Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, Santa Monica, West Hollywood, CA, and nearby areas for breast reduction.

Insurance and Financing

In a few cases, breast reduction may become a medically necessary procedure if the patient suffers from persistent pain in the back, neck or shoulders, or experiences frequent skin infection or rashes at the breast crease. If these conditions can be proved, the patient could be eligible for full or partial insurance coverage.

Other patients will usually have multiple financing options to choose from. They may seek loans through professional medical care financing firms. These loans typically have lower interest rates, quick loan approvals, and easier monthly installments.

The average cost of breast reduction (aesthetic patients only) is $5,913, according to 2020 statistics from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons. This average cost is only part of the total price – it does not include anesthesia, operating room facilities or other related expenses. Please consult with your plastic surgeon’s office to determine your final fee.

A surgeon’s fee for breast reduction will be based on his or her experience, the type of procedure used and the geographic office location.

Your surgeon may offer patient financing plans, so be sure to ask.

Breast reduction costs may include:

  • Anesthesia fees
  • Hospital or surgical facility costs
  • Medical tests
  • Post-surgery garments
  • Prescriptions for medication
  • Surgeon’s fee

When choosing a board-certified plastic surgeon for breast reduction, remember that the surgeon’s experience and your comfort with him or her are just as important as the final breast reduction costs.

Is breast reduction surgery covered by health insurance?

Many health insurance plans cover breast reduction surgery. Your plastic surgeon may need to obtain authorization from your insurer for the surgery. This may require a letter and the submission of photographs. Once authorization is obtained, you will be able to schedule your surgery.

You will be responsible for any copays or deductibles required by your insurer. If your health plan does not cover breast reduction, you may decide to pay for the surgery yourself.

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