After undergoing a breast reduction, it can really feel as if a great weight has been lifted from your shoulders as overly large breasts often result in neck and back pain. They can also affect what you can wear and the activities you can enjoy as well as cause a great deal of embarrassment.
As a result, most breast reduction patients are highly satisfied by the results of their surgery but being full prepared for such a significant body transformation can further enhance your sense of fulfilment.
Our breast reduction recovery timeline
During a breast reduction, Mr Alex Karidis will remove breast tissue and any excess skin and reshape the nipples if required. The breasts are reshaped to appear more natural and youthful. Your recovery is very personal and will also depend on the amount of breast tissue that is removed and if the procedure is combined with liposuction. Here is a general timeline for best breast recovery, covering what you can expect post-procedure.
The first 24 hours: patients typically stay overnight at the Hospital of St John and St Elizabeth after breast reduction surgery with Mr Alex Karidis. Incisions will be made around the nipples, down to the inframammary fold and along the crease under the breast and the breast tissue is manipulated to create a more pleasing shape to the breast, so you should expect some discomfort initially. This is usually well-controlled by post-operative pain medication.
The first week: it is essential you rest during the first week post-surgery and someone is on hand to look after you. Your breasts will be bandaged and we recommend you wear compression garments continually to support them as they are healing.
The first month: patients typically return to work after a week or two, depending on the type of job they do. We discourage strenuous activities and heavy lifting during this initial healing period. All sutures used are dissolvable. Bruising and swelling usually persists for the first couple of weeks after surgery.
Full recovery: after six weeks, patients can safely resume all normal activities. Swelling typically resolves after six weeks and you’ll be able to see the final outcome of your procedure. Some patients experience breast numbness, particularly if the nipple has been operated on, but this should be temporary.
Tips for a smooth breast reduction recovery
We always give patients comprehensive aftercare advice and a direct number they can call if they have any concerns about their recovery. However, there are some things you can do – and some things you should avoid – after surgery:
- Patients are given two specially designed compression garments and we recommend they wear them day and night for the first six weeks. These garments support the breasts, putting less tension on the incisions as they heal. They also help to reduce any swelling by boosting lymphatic drainage.
- Make sure you have friends or family on hand, particularly if you have young children, as it’s important you rest and do no heavy lifting in the first few weeks.
- You will have been advised to stop smoking in advance of surgery and it’s essential you continue to avoid any nicotine-based products as they can slow down wound healing and even result in tissue necrosis in some cases.
- Take advantage of the Karidis Clinic Patient Journey App. Our app helps you prepare for surgery, let’s you know what to expect on the day of your operation, and supports you throughout the recovery process.
At Karidis Clinic, all breast reduction procedures are carried out by one of the best known breast surgeons in London, Mr Alex Karidis. For UK-leading aftercare, get in touch today.