Cosmetic Surgery Tips

Average Weight Loss After Breast Reduction

When you’re looking for an answer to “How much weight can I lose after breast reduction surgery?” it’s important to understand that there are many factors involved.

First, you need to understand what kind of breast reduction surgery you’re having. There are two main kinds: mastopexy and submammary. Mastopexy is the most common kind, but submammary is more likely to cause weight loss. In this guide, we review the aspects of average weight loss after breast reduction, is weight loss easier after breast reduction, breast reduction before or after weight loss, and How many cup sizes can you lose in a breast reduction?

Second, you need to know whether or not you have excess skin in your breasts. If so, your surgeon may remove some of that skin during the procedure. That will result in additional weight loss after surgery—but it depends on how much skin needs to be removed and how much excess fat is left behind after the procedure.

average weight loss after breast reduction

Women seek out breast reduction for a variety of different reasons. Some women feel self-conscious about their large breasts, or find it difficult to find clothing that fits. Large breast size can also make it difficult to work out (and forget finding a sports bra that actually supports a DD or E cup size!) You may notice you have difficulty maintaining good posture, as heavy breasts pull your shoulders forward. Large breasts can also cause pain in a multitude of places, including pain in the shoulders where the bra strap rests, tension headaches, back pain, neck pain, and pain in the breasts themselves. I also hear women complain about rashes and irritation under the breasts and even occasional numbness in the fingers.

How do you know if your breasts are too big?

There is no wrong answer when it comes to breast reduction. Simply put, if you want smaller breasts, then you might benefit from a breast reduction.

How many cup sizes can you go down with breast reduction?

Breast reduction is done in two different ways:

  • Pedicled reduction; in a pedicled reduction, the nipple stays attached to the breast. This means the nipple maintains sensation after surgery, and it is usually possible to breastfeed after this type of reduction. But with a pedicled reduction there is a limit to how much breast tissue can be removed, because I need to leave enough tissue to support blood supply to the nipple.
  • Free-nipple reduction; in a free-nipple reduction the nipple is removed from the breast and placed back on as a skin graft. There is no limit to how much tissue can be removed after a free-nipple reduction. The nipple will be numb after surgery, however, and because the milk ducts are severed, breastfeeding is no longer possible.

I perform a pedicled breast reduction the vast majority of the time, and I have seen women go from an H or even J cup down to a D or full C cup after surgery. That’s a decrease of six cup sizes! That may mean removing six or seven pounds of breast tissue, which results in an enormous improvement in symptoms.

Will my breasts be perkier after reduction?

Yes! Your breasts will absolutely be perkier after breast reduction surgery. Not only are the breasts made smaller, but they are lifted as well. The areola is also reduced in size to match the new, smaller breast.

What size will I be after breast reduction?

Postoperative breast size is an important consideration if you’re thinking about breast reduction surgery. Together with the measurement around your bust, the measurement around your chest beneath your breasts determines your bra size. The chest circumference determines your band size, and the bust minus the band determines the cup size. So after a breast reduction usually only the cup size changes. This is complicated by the fact that band and cup size are interdependent: as one changes, so does the other. So a 36C bra and a 38B bra actually accommodate the same size breasts.

All this to say bra sizes are anything but straightforward! So when it comes to postoperative breast size, I advise my patients to think about proportionality rather than actual bra size. Patients tend to fall into one of three categories:

  • Women who want to be proportional: this depends a bit on your frame, as a woman with curvy hips will be more balanced by slightly larger breasts than a woman with a boyish figure. But women who want to be proportional usually end up in the C-cup range after reduction.
  • Women who want to stay a little busty: it’s not unusual to want to be a little busty after breast reduction surgery. After all, you’ve been living with large breasts most of your life! This usually translates to a D cup bra.
  • Women who want to be as small as possible after surgery: if you want the freedom of no longer needing a bra after surgery, you likely fall into this category. This will be somewhere in the B-cup range after surgery.

Should I get breast reduction surgery?

If you want improvement in the symptoms listed above, or simply want breasts that are more proportional for your frame, breast reduction surgery may be a great option for you. One question I hear frequently though, is, “Am I too young for breast reduction?” along with “Am I too old for breast reduction?”

Breast reduction surgery is appropriate for a wide variety of ages. But there are a few criteria to make sure you’re a good candidate:

  • Your breasts should be stable in size for a least a year. So if you’re in your teens and still developing, it may make sense to wait a couple years until your breast size stabilizes. Exceptions do exist however. If I see a young teenager with extremely large breasts, I may recommend reduction at a younger age because the tremendous improvement in quality of life outweighs the slight risk that she may need reduction again after her breasts finish developing. It is not at all unusual to have a breast reduction at age 16 or 17.
  • You should be physically healthy enough to undergo surgery. As long as a woman is physically healthy, I do not have an upper age limit for breast reduction surgery.
  • If you smoke or use other nicotine products, you will need to quit for at least six weeks around the time of surgery (I recommend two weeks before and four weeks after surgery). Nicotine decreases blood supply to tissue, increasing the risk of healing problems or even necrosis (i.e. death) of the nipple.
  • If you have diabetes it should be well-controlled. This translates to a hemoglobin A1c of 7 or less. Uncontrolled diabetes increases the risk of infection and healing problems.
  • You aren’t currently breastfeeding, or it’s been at least six months since you stopped breastfeeding. Not only does breastfeeding change breast size, but operating on breasts that are currently producing milk may result in milk collecting in the breast and causing an infection.
  • You’re okay with visible scars on the breast. The scars from breast reduction are shaped like an anchor: they go around the nipple, down the front of the breast, and there may be a scar underneath the breast as well. They ultimately fade pretty well, but scars stay pink for about a year. Check out some of our before-and-after photos to see what I mean.
  • You’re not 100% dead-set on breastfeeding in the future. As I mentioned previously, breastfeeding is usually possible after a pedicled breast reduction. But removing some of the glandular tissue can affect milk supply, meaning you might have to supplement with formula. If breastfeeding is very important to you, I recommend avoiding any breast surgery until you are through that phase of life.

I grew up overweight and I also grew up with rather large breasts.

Both were a problem I dealt with throughout my adolescence and in my teenage years. Starting in middle school, I noticed my breasts were getting big — they were getting much bigger than other girls’ breasts — and I hated it. 

The trend continued well into high school, only now they weren’t just annoying, they were downright detrimental. It was hard to work out — running in gym class, playing softball, and jumping in the pool were all things I couldn’t do because I just couldn’t seem to control my chest. It truly had a mind of its own. And it, in turn, led me to spiral into a state of self-consciousness and anxiety.

On top of that, I’d get horrible aches and pains in my back and shoulders. Even just the act of wearing a bra would put such a strain on my body that, at the end of the day, I’d have deep red marks on my shoulders that would bruise and chafe.

Will I Lose Weight After a Breast Reduction?

Woman on scale, celebrating weight loss

Breast reduction can help improve physical comfort. During breast reduction surgery, heavy, lumpy, and asymmetrical fat and tissue is removed from the breasts before loose and sagging skin is excised. The end result is smaller, more comfortable, and more complimentary breasts that no longer cause back pain or require extraneous support. In the process, breast reduction helps tone and trim the upper body, producing a slimmer, more attractive, and more appealing look to all surrounding areas.

Will I Lose Weight After Breast Reduction Surgery?

Breast reduction surgery may result in weight loss, though it is not intended as a weight-loss procedure. Designed to remove excess fat, tissue, and skin from heavy and pendulous breasts, reduction surgery improves physical comfort and brings the chest into ideal contour with the chest, ribs, and hips.

By removing excess fat and skin from the breast mound, reduction surgery may assist with:

  • Weight Loss
  • Greater Range of Motion
  • Enhanced Clothing Options
  • Improved Self-Esteem

The best way to learn what breast reduction surgery may be able to accomplish for you is through a one-on-one consultation at our comfortable Los Altos office.

Body Contouring

Body contouring can be used to sculpt and tone the frame – from the ankles to the neck – and may be used in conjunction with breast reduction to improve overall results. If your goal is weight loss, procedures that may be suggested in addition to breast reduction include:

  • Abdominoplasty
  • Liposuction
  • Body Lift Procedures

We offer arm lift, thigh lift, butt lift, and similar contouring procedures that can be used to eliminate loose and sagging skin along with stubborn fat deposits for a more comprehensive result. We will help you determine if additional procedures will be necessary for meeting your specific goals.

And that’s when I started to consider getting breast reduction surgery

I was still just a teenager at the time — full of hormones, raging insecurities and all of the emotions that come with being a teenager. But I knew that in order to feel happy and to truly accept myself and feel comfortable in my own skin, I’d have to make a change.

Of course, I tried the traditional paths. I worked out. I ate healthier. But nothing worked. And it had a negative impact on my psyche. But I pushed through, I stayed strong, and I worked my butt off.

I talked to my doctor about breast reduction surgery when I was 17. I was still in high school, but my doctor was more than accepting and encouraging — and so was my mom. I really wouldn’t have been able to do it without her, I don’t think.

And that’s when I kick-started my journey. At 17 I was graduating high school, getting ready for college, and taking the necessary steps that would allow me to get the surgery I hoped would solve at least some of my problems.

The process was pretty straightforward. First, I spent some time talking to doctors and detailing the issues I was facing. Then, I was sent to a physical therapist. After a few weeks of trying to correct my posture and alleviate my muscle strain, I had another appointment with my doctor. And since my problems persisted, they sent me to a plastic surgeon.

It’s all smooth sailing from here — at least, physically. Mentally, I had a lot of questions, concerns, and doubts. This was the only thing I wanted for so long but suddenly, the closer it got the more worried I became.

Would I regret it? What if it goes wrong? What if I’m just overreacting?

I wondered if there was more to my inability to lose weight and the restrictions my size F breasts had on my abilities to perform relatively basic tasks.

Ultimately, I believed in myself and what I was doing

On an early morning in the spring after I turned 18, I had the surgery. It only took a few hours — I was in the hospital in the morning and awake by the afternoon. I had to spend one night in the hospital, but by the next morning, I was sent home.

It all felt like a dream — but that was probably thanks to all the drugs I was on. I don’t remember feeling much different, at least not initially.

I did have to keep going back to my doctor for a few weeks after surgery. Essentially, they suited me up with drainage tubes right at the edge of my breasts. And they had to be drained, checked and eventually removed over the next few weeks.

It took a while for the swelling to go down. I didn’t really notice the difference until a few weeks later when everything had fallen into place and situated itself.

Of course, I was in pain. For the first week, I definitely felt sore all over my chest and couldn’t really do much with my arms. But as the weeks progressed, it got less and less intense.

It took me about three weeks to really feel different and by week four — even though I definitely wasn’t supposed to be — I was out and about again. I was going on hikes, working out and going to class.

I was able to actually go on runs and swim in the pool and wear a strapless dress. I still had body issues, but with my newfound freedom, I felt like a weight had been literally and figuratively lifted off of my chest. I was able to look at things completely differently.

In the first few months after my surgery, I lost 15 pounds. And yes, some of that was from the actual weight of the breast removal itself. In the year after my surgery, I lost 30 pounds. And ever since my surgery, I’ve lost 50 pounds total.

And I wouldn’t have been able to do so many things if I hadn’t gotten my breast reduction surgery

I truly couldn’t do many things others could because of my breasts. It was a problem that demanded a solution and I did everything in my power to correct that solution to better myself, my mind, my body, and my overall health.

My breast reduction surgery and weight loss-journey were difficult. It was a long, hard, and sometimes seemingly impossible process. I was irritated, frustrated, and miserable a lot.

But by getting this surgery, I was able to change my perceptions and really accept myself no matter what. I wasn’t on this journey for anyone else. I wasn’t doing it to make other people happy or to fit in with a societal mold. I did it because it was what felt right for me and I wouldn’t change a thing.

is weight loss easier after breast reduction

Breast reduction can help improve physical comfort. During breast reduction surgery, heavy, lumpy, and asymmetrical fat and tissue is removed from the breasts before loose and sagging skin is excised. The end result is smaller, more comfortable, and more complimentary breasts that no longer cause back pain or require extraneous support. In the process, breast reduction helps tone and trim the upper body, producing a slimmer, more attractive, and more appealing look to all surrounding areas.

Will I Lose Weight After Breast Reduction Surgery?

Breast reduction surgery may result in weight loss, though it is not intended as a weight-loss procedure. Designed to remove excess fat, tissue, and skin from heavy and pendulous breasts, reduction surgery improves physical comfort and brings the chest into ideal contour with the chest, ribs, and hips.

By removing excess fat and skin from the breast mound, reduction surgery may assist with:

The best way to learn what breast reduction surgery may be able to accomplish for you is through a one-on-one consultation at our comfortable Los Altos office.

Common Problems After Breast Reduction Surgery

A lot of people who have had breast reduction surgery may have problems that make it harder for them to heal. People who want to have this kind of surgery should be aware of these risks so they can make smart decisions about their care. There are a lot of common problems that can happen after breast reduction surgery. Some of these are infections, scars, and changes in how you feel.

After having breast reduction surgery, one of the most common problems that can happen is getting an infection. This might show up as pain, heat, and stiffness near the surgery site. Some people need drugs or even surgery to drain the infection in order to get better. Patients are less likely to get sick if they follow their doctor’s instructions and keep the area clean and dry after surgery.

When you have breast reduction surgery, you might also end up with scars. Every treatment leaves some scars, but some people may be more likely to get hypertrophic or keloid marks. Some of these scars will be raised, red, and thick. You may need extra help, such as scar creams, silicone sheets, or steroid shots. If someone wants to get rid of their breasts, they should talk to their doctor about the chance of getting scars.

You may also notice changes in how you feel after having breast reduction surgery. For a short time, some people may feel warmth or stiffness in their breasts or nipples. For others, the way they feel may change for good. People who are going to have surgery should talk to their doctor about these risks, since they can make it harder to breastfeed or fully enjoy sexual pleasure.

Other common problems people may have are being uneven, having cuts that take too long to heal, or not liking the way they look. What people who are getting breast reduction surgery should really expect from the process and be open with their surgeon about any fears or issues that might come up while they are healing.

In general, breast reduction surgery can make people whose lives are hard because their breasts are too big feel better physically or mentally. Learn about the problems and risks that might happen before this type of surgery. This will help the patient lower their risk and get the best results. People who want to have surgery to reduce their breast size should first talk to a board-certified plastic surgeon. This kind of surgeon can help you through the process and give you expert advice.

Body Contouring

Body contouring can be used to sculpt and tone the frame – from the ankles to the neck – and may be used in conjunction with breast reduction to improve overall results. If your goal is weight loss, procedures that may be suggested in addition to breast reduction include:

We offer arm lift, thigh lift, butt lift, and similar contouring procedures that can be used to eliminate loose and sagging skin along with stubborn fat deposits for a more comprehensive result. We will help you determine if additional procedures will be necessary for meeting your specific goals.

Your Responsibility

Following breast reduction or weight loss through body contouring, you will have to work to maintain your results. This means eating healthy and getting plenty of exercise.

We can produce remarkable results. You will have to take steps to maintain them. We will discuss this in greater detail during your time in our care.

breast reduction before or after weight loss

Although most people think about altering breast size by augmentation, many women dream of how much easier their lives would be if they were smaller. Last year, more than 100,000 women had breast reductions. There are many reasons women choose a breast reduction

Almost all surgeons counsel their patients to lost weight before one of these procedures. And let’s be clear. Doctors recommend weight lose by making permanent lifestyle changes. That means no crash dieting or fad weight loss programs that have poor long-term maintainability. You have to make a commitment to creating and maintaining a new body style. With that out of the way, here are great reasons to lose weight before a breast reduction procedure.

A Breast Lift Might Be All You Need

You might not need a full reduction procedure if you lose weight first. Perhaps just a breast lift. Most women see their breasts get smaller proportionately to the amount of weight they lose. So, if your weight loss is significant, a less radical option like a breast lift might be just the ticket to match your new body shape.

The Order of Things Matters

If you decide you still want a reduction, it will be easier to choose your breast size to match your new body style. Once you’ve settled into a trimmer look, you and your doctor can choose your ideal breast size much more accurately. It’s like a great outfit. All the pieces come together to look exactly the way they should.

You May Sabotage Your Breast Reduction

If you get a reduction first then lose weight, your breasts may lose their shape. If you just lose a litte, this might not be an issue. But, if you end up losing a lot of weight, you may lose the breast shape you gained in the reduction. Remember, if you lose weight first, it’s much easier to match your ideal bust size to your new body shape.

There’s No Free Lunch

Keep in mind, you can get your former larger breast back if you regain your weight. This is why it is so important to decide on weight loss that brings you to a natural state. If you can’t maintain your healthy lifestyle, you might undo all the planning and work you’ve already put in.

How many cup sizes can you lose in a breast reduction

For many women, overly-large breasts can cause a multitude of physical issues, including neck and back pain, breathing problems, nerve pain, irritation and rashes beneath the breasts, and posture issues. Excessively large breasts can also restrict a woman’s individual lifestyle and make it difficult to exercise comfortably. Finding clothing that fits properly can also be a challenge, and many women are self-conscious or even embarrassed about their large breasts.

Breast reduction surgery can offer significant relief to these common problems. Medically referred to as reduction mammoplasty, breast reduction surgery can reduce the size of your breasts and improve the overall proportions of your physique.

Board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Raymond Jean has helped many women improve their figures, confidence, and quality of life through breast surgery. He will customize your procedure to meet your unique goals. When discussing desired outcomes of breast reduction surgery, women often ask how much of a reduction is possible. Simply put, the answer is: it depends.

How Many Sizes Down Can You Go With Breast Reduction?

The degree to which breasts can be reduced with reduction mammoplasty depends on a number of factors, such as the volume of the breasts before treatment, their makeup, the type of incision being made, and the unique goals of the patient. Typically, most women drop one or two cup sizes with breast reduction surgery. This is usually sufficient to alleviate the many problems associated with overly-large breasts, while still maintaining an attractive and proportionate body shape.

During your initial consultation with Dr. Jean, He will assess your physical condition, review your medical history, and determine your candidacy for breast reduction surgery. Together, you will develop a customized treatment plan that reflects your individual goals and desired outcome.

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