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Breast Reduction

Breast reduction surgery is for women who suffer from the pain, discomfort, and inconvenience of overly large breasts. Back and shoulder pain and tension headaches are some of the physical symptoms caused by the excessive weight of large breasts. Dr. Shim Ching uses advanced surgical techniques to limit the scarring that results from breast reduction surgery at his Honolulu, Hawaii practice.

If you are considering breast reduction surgery and are looking for a plastic surgeon, request a consultation with Dr. Ching, or call our office at (808) 585-8855 to schedule an appointment.

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What Is Breast Reduction?

Breast reduction surgery allows many women to enjoy a more active lifestyle and greater variety in clothing. In this surgery, excess skin and breast tissue are removed from the breast. In certain cases, Dr. Ching can use liposuction alone to reduce the size of the breast without scars. If the areolas are large, they can often be reduced during this procedure as well. Usually there is some change in the sensation to the nipple and areola after breast reduction surgery. Interestingly, some studies have shown an increase in sensation after this procedure in larger breasts.

Am I a Good Candidate for Breast Reduction?

You may be a good candidate for breast reduction if you have one or more of the following conditions:

  • Breasts that are too large in proportion to your body frame
  • Heavy, pendulous breasts with nipples and areolas that point downward
  • One breast is much larger than the other
  • Back, neck or shoulder pain caused by the weight of your breasts
  • Skin irritation beneath your breasts
  • Indentations in your shoulders from tight bra straps
  • Restriction of physical activity due to the size and weight of your breasts
  • Dissatisfaction or self-consciousness about the largeness of your breasts

Your Procedure

During the consultation, you will be asked about your desired breast size as well as anything else about your breasts that you would like to see improved. This will help Dr. Ching to understand your expectations and determine whether they realistically can be achieved.

There are main two patterns of incisions for breast reduction. In a vertical technique, the configuration of scar is a lollipop shape, with a circular scar around the areola and a vertical scar below the areola, ending at the base of the breast. This is in contrast to the more traditional, anchor-shaped scar where there is an additional scar that runs along the base of the breast (the inframammary fold). Larger, more droopy breasts require more skin and breast tissue removal; these cases will involve an anchor-shaped scar. Wherever possible, Dr. Ching prefers to use minimal scar techniques for this surgery. Some patients may want to consider the Bellesoma™ breast reduction method, which leaves no vertical scar on the breasts. The other priority of this surgery is to reshape the breasts into a smaller, lifted and beautiful shape.

What You Should Know

Breast reduction can be performed at any age, but plastic surgeons usually recommend waiting until breast development has stopped. Childbirth and breast-feeding may have significant and unpredictable effects on the size and shape of your breasts. Nevertheless, many women decide to undergo breast reduction before having children and feel that they can address any subsequent changes later. If you plan to breast-feed in the future, you should discuss this with Dr. Ching.

Insurance coverage is sometimes available for breast reduction surgery. Many factors determine your eligibility, including the specific terms of your insurance policy and the amount of breast tissue to be removed. A letter of predetermination may be required by your insurance company prior to surgery. This will be discussed during your consultation and an application will be made to your insurance carrier to cover your surgery if appropriate.

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Shim Ching, MD