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Can These Breast Reduction Scars Be Repaired? (photo)

My reduction was done two years ago and I went from a G to a DD. After my breast reduction, I asked the doctors office about the scars (raised and widening) and got tired old: "They'll lightenup and flatten out." . I have a raised scar and the aerola is stretched. The vertical scars are discolored and stretched. I think they look chewed up and awful. I don't want to see the original surgeon as the trust is gone. Is there anything I can do? I feel so disfigured.

Doctor Answers (12)

Scars could be revised following a breast reduction

+2

Thanks for your question and your photos. It is difficult to comment on your shape without having a preop picture or knowing the technique that was used. I do think that your scars could be improved upon. Sometimes this occurs when the original areola is very wide and the desire is to decrease it. I usually use a barbed suture in this scenario to try and maintain the tension circumferentially. You did not specifically comment on the shape, but if you wanted less fullness inferiorly then a wedge could be excised. I hope you are able to find someone that you have confidence in. Best of Luck!


Austin Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 40 reviews

Can These Breast Reduction Scars Be Repaired? (photo)

+2

Yes you can think about a scar revision. But you could be a scar former so be prepared for the return of these scars. 

Darryl J. Blinski, MD
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 62 reviews

Scar Revision After Breast Reduction

+2

Short answer is yes.  Given that the shape is somewhat irregular a revision is in order.  This would essentially mean removing some skin and a bit of areola.  It can be done under local anesthesia. 

The only thing is that with the raised scars, this may occur again.  During the post op period, have ps monitor scar so intervention can be started early.

 

You are not disfigured, even though you feel that way, and the treatment isn't that bad.

Scott E. Kasden, MD
Dallas Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 46 reviews

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Breast reduction scarring

+2
It is difficult to see the vertical part of the scar in the photos but I think the important issue is what disturbs you about the breasts. From your question, it sounds like the shape and scaring of the nipple areolar complex is the main problem. While a revisional reduction/lift would address the global problem, this may not be a financial reality for you and your insurance may deem this to be cosmetic. In that case, a more limited procedure may be well worth consideration.

Robert L. Kraft, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 11 reviews

Breast Reduction Scars

+2

Hello ATX Girl,

Drs. Marosan and Becker represent either end of the spectrum on how to fix your problem.  Dr. Becker is focused on the raised, hypertrophic periareolar scars and a minimal surgery to fix them.  Dr. Marosan looks at the situation in a more global view; that the etiology of the scars are from excessive tension, that your breasts are still wanting in shape and lift, and that reducing and re-lifting will give you scar improvement and much more. 

My personal view is the same as Dr. Marosan.  Most importantly, if you simply cut out the scars without addressing the persistent weight and forces on those scars, there is a higher likelihood of recurrent scar thickening.  By reducing the size of the breast more, and redistributing the forces towards new vertical and inframammary scars with a revision lift, you are more likely to get fine white scars.  You would be surprised how many inches of skin can be removed from the bottom of your breasts!

Dr. Jennifer Walden is in your area, and she trained in New York at a fine program. I don't know her personally, but you should visit and look at her pictures.

Best of luck!

Gerald Minniti, MD, FACS
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Can one revise breduction scars?

+2

Thank you for your question and photos. Without the benefit of a preoperative photo, it is hard to comment on the results. I see that you have thick scars and widened areolae. You have asymmetric breasts which are saggy. I personally would suggest a breast lift/small reduction to give you better shaped breasts with smaller areolae in the appropriate position. Your scars are wide and thick because at the original closure there was a lot of tension on the suture line. See a board certified plastic surgeon with experience in secondary breast suergery. Good luck.

George Marosan, MD
Bellevue Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 10 reviews

Scars after breast reduction

+2

From your pictures it does seem that your scars are not the usual flat and faded ones that we would expect. Scars are permanent and can't be erased but they usually can be improved. Without an in person exam it is difficult to make a reasonable recommendation so I would recommend that you see another plastic surgeon certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery for recommendations for your case. Good luck to you.

Margaret Skiles, MD
Sacramento Plastic Surgeon
3.5 out of 5 stars 10 reviews

Breast Scar Repair

+1
The brief answer from your photos is yes, a scar revision woulld most likely help you minimize your scars.
Here are some other guidelines to help you:
Best Scar Management is important to minimize or completely hide from view, the telltale signs of your surgery—namely, scars. Both you and your surgeon want you to have the most minimal scarring possible. There are many possible causes for scars that are enlarged or not healing well. Unsightly scars are most commonly due to genetics, underlying medical conditions, or improper scar/wound care. The last part is very important and patients can make a noticeable difference in their scars’ appearance by following best scar management practices. Here are some simple tips.
Scar Management tips:
  1. Minimize tension on the scar. Steri-Strips and/or surgical tape are often placed in non-hair bearing areas to minimize tension and keep pressure over the scar. This minimizes the stress that can pull the scar apart (dehiscence) creating a wound and delaying healing time, and can make the scar wider, or more “ropy”.
  2. Keep your incision site/scar clean to prevent infection. Follow your surgeon’s wound care instructions to the letter with out modification. Never apply different products then recommended without first discussing them with your surgeon. This is especially important during the first few weeks. If there are any signs of infection, contact your surgeon’s office right away and/or see your doctor or his nurse immediately. Typical signs of infection may include redness outside the immediate incision site, asymmetric swelling, and drainage, of pus, fever, chills, and “feeling sick”.
  3. Protect your scars from the sun. Staying out of the sun is the best advice. Minimal exposure to sunlight is prevents hyperpigmentation (permanently turning brown) and other problems that can make the scar more noticeable. Sunscreen, at least 30 SPF and an overlying make camouflage make up additionally protects the scar from the suns harmful rays. This advice is especially important the first year following your surgery.
  4. Use specific scar maturation products recommended by your surgeon. Patients seem to have their own opinions on this touting everything from Pure Vit E, Coco butter, to Aloe Vera, etc but most have minimal benefit other than keeping the scar hydrated. Although hydration is important there are better, scientifically studied products with greater efficacy. Most of the scientific articles written about this subject indicate that topical silicone gel or silicone sheets work the best. There are a lot of products to choose from, but silicone should be one of the key ingredients. Although Mederma, an onion extract derivative active ingredient rather than mainly silicone based may help, primarily silicone based products are better and many also contain other ingredients that may be synergistic (hydrocortisone or other steroid, Vitamin E, Sunscreen,etc). At the present time I prefer BioCorneum or Kelo-Cote products especially on areas that silicone strips aren’t applicable, for example, on the face. If the reader has problems obtaining these they can call my office. Patient compliance is also critical – use often and according to directions or it will not work optimally. NEVER apply products without first discussing them with your surgeon.
  5. Monitor to make sure your scar is progressing optimally. Keep your scheduled follow-up appointments with your surgeon to verify that your scars are maturing as expected. Occasionally if indicated you may need a topical steroid preparation or even a series of injections (5-FU and/or Steroids) or laser treatments to treat or prevent scar hypertrophy or keloid formation (red raised scars), or other topical medicines to treat post inflammatory hyperpigmentation (brown scars) with prescription creams and possible laser treatments.

Larry S. Nichter, MD, MS, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 45 reviews

Revisionary Breast Reduction Surgery Helpful?

+1

Thank you for the question and pictures.

Yes, scar revision surgery may be very helpful in your case. If you also have concerns about breast size and/or position on the chest wall, additional surgery may be helpful to improve shape/size of the breasts as well.

 Best wishes.

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 722 reviews

Can These Breast Reduction Scars Be Repaired?

+1

The circumareolar scars can be improved by placing multiple deep sutures to prevent stretching

Hilton Becker, MD
Boca Raton Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.