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13 things I wish I'd known before my Breast Reduction/Lift surgery

  • 3 years ago

Earlier this year I had breast reduction surgery and a lift. (See my story.) Here are 13 things I wish someone had told me before surgery.

1. I wish I would have known how wonderful I was going to feel after this surgery. If I had, I would have done this years ago. All of my back, neck and shoulder pain is gone forever. My confidence also went through the roof. When I woke up in recovery, I could instantly feel the difference and loved how perky my breasts were. My hubby commented on how my posture was so good.

2. Communicate with your doctor to find out when your drains will be removed. The day after surgery I went to the clinic to see the doctor. He checked my drains and was able to remove one of them right away. This was nice and totally unexpected. If I had known they were going to pull it so soon I would have doubled up on the pain meds. And also do not watch while they pull this out. It smarts a little bit and made me woozy. It goes quickly but please do not look. I was really out of it, had not eaten much and was nauseous. I got really dizzy and had to sit down before I fainted. I blame most of that on all the meds and lack of food.

3. Stitch removal can hurt. Two weeks post-op I had the stitches removed from my nipples. If I had known it was going to hurt like a bugger I would have medicated myself heavily before this appointment as well. It felt like someone was pinching my nipples really hard…OUCH. I was about jumping off the table and had tears in my eyes. I was pretty hyper sensitive in that area.

4. Massage, massage, massage. At two weeks post-op I started massaging my breasts with the Palmer’s Vitamin E Skin Therapy Oil. It felt great and helped the extremely dry and flaky skin I had on the breasts. Go gently and be patient. I still to this day use the oil on my entire body. My scars look awesome and are barely visible. No raised or red areas at all. I had all internal stitches with the exception of the nipples.

5. Take the smooth way home. We should have driven home from the hospital on a less bumpy route. We drove through a heavy construction route. Oh my goodness every bump on the way home made me tense up in pain. You also need to have a pillow in the car to place under the seatbelt which goes across your chest. Never thought of that prior to surgery J

6. Don't be shy, strike a pose. Looking back I should have taken a camera to the hospital to have some good before pictures taken. I took some at home but they were not great. It would have been fun to take pictures of the markings the doctor made before surgery.

7. Don't buy bras until later. I purchased bras before surgery in what I thought would be my new size. Dumb idea because until you are healed and the swelling goes down you really have no idea of your final size. I donated the bras to a good cause so it turned out fine. Please wait a few weeks before shopping for sexy bras.

8. Prepare your significant other, if you have one, for what to expect immediately post-op. I should have shown my hubby some pictures of breasts after a reduction. When he had the first look that evening I thought he would die. He tried not to react but it was so obvious he was freaked out. You really need to prep the men because their toys are not going to be pretty for a while and it upsets them. Imagine his horror when he got a look at all the incisions, stitches in the nipples, bruised, bloody, swollen…yikes! I think he was worried they would never look normal again. It looks a little bit like something out of a horror movie.

9. Your breasts might look weird for a while. I did not realize pre-op that my breasts would look a little boxy for a while. They needed time to settle and drop but why did I not know this???? Guess I forgot to ask that question. They are all fine now but it took some time.

10. No heavy lifting. Ok now ladies this is really important…DO NOT and I repeat DO NOT attempt any heavy lifting or exercise for the first month after surgery. I went back to the gym at 4 weeks post op with my doctor’s approval. I was able to exercise without any pain and I was absolutely excited.

11. You are going to have scabs around your nipples that will itch something fierce. Resist the urge to scratch. I discovered that I was actually scratching in my sleep. I woke up one morning with a bloody nightgown. I discovered that I had actually scratched the scabs right off. Boy did that hurt! So if you are finding they itch in the day try sleeping with sox on your hands to prevent this.

12. The surgical bras are very comfortable so wear them around the clock for the first six months. I woke up in one after the surgery but wish I had thought to get a couple more right away. You need a clean one to wear while you wash them. Have at least three on hand. The longer you wear this, the better your results will be. No underwire bras for at least 4 months.

13. Do not try and sleep on your tummy for at least the first month. I slept on the reclining sofa for the first few nights and that was comfy. When you do go back to your bed have a pillow under each arm/elbow. It hurt to lay flat on my back with my arms falling to the mattress. You will need to raise them up a little bit.

Enjoy your new and perky rack!

Comments (639)

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*****update***** So Im now 3 months and i still have a very very small opening that went from a quarter size to a dot this opening is still in the process of healing. Slowly but surely :). My breast are still a little sore. Not too much but yes this surgery and like others takes time to heal. Overall i'm happy with my results. :)
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make sure you let them enjoy fresh air without any dressings etc a couple of times a day, letting things dry out and get air is great for natural healing
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You know what i ask my doc if i can air dry my small opening and he said no which is weird because i did that with my c section idk but as long as its healing
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I have my first consultation for a breast reduction on Wednesday 9th April, and literally can't wait to have it done. Just wondering how long you ladies had to wait from the first consultation to the op? I'm hoping for mid June!
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I am almost a month post op. It depends on your insurance carrier and your schedule. It takes about 1 month to 6 weeks to get approval from the insurance carrier. If they deny the procedure from the pictures and patient's claim of physical distress then the doctor may try to get it approved from the psychological or social emotional stand point which will take another 4 to 6 weeks. Please make sure your iron is up or the anesthesiologist could refuse the surgery hours before its scheduled. Once all ducks are in a row it will really depend on your doctor's schedule. Once I got the go ahead from insurance company I could have scheduled it for that very same week :-)
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I went in on a Thursday and they approved me MONDAY! I was so happy because they told me to be prepared for a wait but mine was short! Good luck
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Nice:)
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I just had my consultation today. I am very anxious to hear something back.
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Praying for you......Lord allow Lioness surgery to be approved, I'm Jesus name. I go on the 22th of April....
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I am weeks post op and I'm still swollen. The doctor said it was normal and that it wold take a couple of months. My areolas are not nice and round, the doctor said that when the swelling goes down it will be. Anyone have this happen? Is this ok?
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Week 6 to 8 swelling should go down. But it can take up to 4 months for all swelling to go away. You might even find that after 4 months that if you do a lot with your upper body for a day you might have a little swelling the next day. Your breasts and areole with take on different shape as they settle. You must sit back and be patience. I is very hard to do. But it will get better.
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Thank you Ione27, I am only 4 weeks. Just nerves about the areolas. They are getting lighter and I still have the glue he put. Where the gook and glue came off, I have no scar at all. It's just that the areolas are not round.
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I am six weeks in and am swollen as well. My doctor said they would take a while and that they would change shapes in the process. Being patient is the hard part I think. I also find that if I push it too much during the day (working out --etc. ) that I am sore at night.
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hi its so good to hear about all your experiences. I'm having a breast reduction in May. This will be so great for my posture and back and for the future as both my grandmothers had large boobs which seemed to get bigger as they got older. I am wondering how you all find your nipple responses with regards to the cold or arousal? do they still become erect? seems a bit of a silly question but I do like my nipples as they are its just the size of my boobs.....
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I'm about 5 weeks along after surgery, reduction and lift. I was extremely worried about sensitivity as well. I may not be normal, but the sensitivity of my nipples seems to have increased rather then decreased. My concern right now is the under breast incision healing. There seems to be some gappage forming and I'm not sure if that's normal or not. Not open wounds so much as little open skin pockets with skin underneath. I highly recommend the procedure. I feel 20 yrs younger.
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Hi, I still have the tape on my breasts after 2 1/2 weeks. Did you massage them with or with the tape? My tape are still very stuck. I go to the Dr. tomorrow, I guess he will take them off????
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I assumed my doctor was taking them off as well. However it wasn't the case. He assured me that I could feather them off myself. So I took them off in the shower at about the same time you are at. It was actually easier for me in the shower as the water helped release them easier. Just used my nail to lift edge then very slowly did it. Maybe your doctor will do it today. Let me know how you do:) Then I was free to massage away. Feels better without the tapes.
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Every PS does things differently :)
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Hi. I tried to take them off but they were too tight. My doctor did take them off and did not hurt. He told me that I could use any bra that was comfortable with no wires. I asked him about messages and he said not yet that it was too soon. I bought the Biocormun(?) and started using it for my scar. I noticed that my areolas are not round. Is this normal? I still have the glue and am taking them off myself. I am in a lot of pain today ( I went to a cocktail party last nite. lol). He said the pain gets worse at 3 weeks because all the anesthesia is gone and the nerves are finding their way back. This means that I'm healing well. I'll send him pictures of my areola and see.
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I'm at three weeks today and thought I would die of pain my first full day back at the office and I have a job where I sit all day.
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I don't remember the tape. I had mine done combined with lipo and a tummy tuck. I was on heavy meds the first week. Had to make a log on my cell phone of everything I did and what time just to make sure I got my vitamins, meds, and brushed my teeth without taking meds too often. You literally can take it and not remember 10 min later so be careful.
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Morning dar where can I get marena bra I'm in south Africa
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don't know but remember to get a band size bigger to allow for swelling post op, whatever you buy.
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Amazon.com
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Definitely order one size bigger. I was a medium by size chart and the large is snug. I Have it on the largest hooks too.
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