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Excess Flab on Sides After Breast Reduction

I had Breast Reduction around five years ago, followed by a lot of complicatons (which were fixed by another doctor). Now, I'm concerned about the excess flab on my sides from the surgery. It's really bothersome if i don't put a bra on, or if I wear certian kinds of bra. Are there any procedures for fixing this? If so, is it possible for such procedures to be covered by insurance?

Doctor Answers (33)

Excess flab after breast reduction is a common complaint

+2

Many women (particularly those who are overweight) have excess tissue that extends past the outside of the breasts under the arms as a fold of skin and fat. This typically lies under the bra strap.

Breast reduction is typically limited to the breast tissue itself and therefore does not involve removing the excess "flab" on the sides. However, this "flab" can become more noticeable after breast reduction and is a common complaint after surgery.

Improvement may occur with weight loss and/or time. Surgical correction may involve liposuction and/or excision of the "flab" which may involve additional scarring.

Surgical correction is not likely to be covered by insurance as it is basically a different issue from and unrelated to the enlarged breats that were corrected by the breast reduction surgery.

However, in your case, your insurance may cover an additional procedure since you apparently had some post-operative issues related to the reduction. Your plastic surgeon should be able to advise you in that regard.

Best Wishes!

Chattanooga Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 2 reviews

Secondary Procedures Are Usually Not Covered By Insurance; In Your Case, Liposuction Will Get Rid of Your Subcutaneous Tissue

+1

It’s not unusual for women with breast enlargement to have a roll of skin and subcutaneous tissue that extends posteriorly from the breast. In many cases, this tissue extends all the way to the midline of the back. This tissue often lies beneath the bra strap and can be very noticeable.

Although every effort is made to address this issue during surgery, it’s not uncommon to have a residual roll of skin and fat in this area. Efforts to address this problem at the time of surgery can involve extending the incision posteriorly to remove excess skin and fat. In other cases, there may be excess fat with good skin tone. In this situation, liposuction might be the best option.

A secondary procedure is often indicated when the roll of excess tissue extends posteriorly to the midline of the back. This procedure can be done in the prone position to provide better access to the excess skin and fat in the back area. Although secondary procedures designed to correct these types of problems have high success rates, they are very rarely covered by insurance carriers. They are typically viewed as cosmetic and therefore not medically necessary.

For many patients, this excess tissue is not only unsightly, but also causes them difficulty wearing standard under garments. Correction of this problem is associated with high satisfaction rates. If you have concerns about this type of problem, consultation with your plastic surgeon would be appropriate.

Omaha Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 56 reviews

Excess Flab on Sides After Breast Reduction

+1

This is a common problem among overweight women who have a breast reduction.  The lateral tissue is fat not breast tissue and the insurance companies will not pay to remove it.  Some patients have paid a fee to the surgeon, anesthesiologist, and OR facility to take care of the lateral fat at the same time as a cosmetic procedure.

Web reference: http://www.drvitenas.com/breast-reduction.html

Houston Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 32 reviews

Breast Reduction - Excess Flab on Sides

+1

Yes, and probably not.

In general, having some excess tissue in that area is not that uncommon, and it may be more noticeable after a breast reduction.  Furthermore, if you put on some weight after your surgery then relatively more may have gone there than did so before (since your breasts were reduced and some of the weight may otherwise have gone there).  Whatever the cause, you (or the surgeon, more likely) need to determine if the excess tissue is skin, fat, or both.  If it's just fat, then some lipo may help.  If there is a lot of skin involved, then removing that skin surgically may be necessary.  Either way, I doubt that this procedure would be covered by insurance although each policy is different and that is something you can ask of your surgeon.

I hope that this helps and good luck,

Dr. E

Web reference: http://www.bodysculpture.com

New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 140 reviews

Excess Tissue Chest after Breast Reduction?

+1

Thank you for the question.

Many patients undergoing breast reduction surgery are also concerned about “excess” skin and/or adipose tissue of the upper chest (infraaxillary) area  as well. To treat this area liposuction and/or skin excision (lipectomy)  may be necessary. If the area is not treated, it may become even more obvious as an area of “fullness” after the breast reduction procedure is performed.

If a patient elects to have the excess skin in this area removed she should be aware that the scarring of the breast reduction procedure may expand to the side (laterally). Many patients would prefer to have the scar (and an improved contour)  rather than the extra “fold” of tissue.

If the area of the upper lateral chest is not addressed during the breast reduction procedure many patients will be in your situation require revision surgery ( liposuction and/or lipectomy)  to correct the area.

I hope this helps.

Web reference: http://www.poustiplasticsurgery.com/Procedures/procedure_breastreduction.htm

San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 627 reviews

There are various options for treating this

+1

It can often occur that the sides of your breasts do show up slightly more because the volume of the breast is actually reduced.

There are various options for treating this but the main thing I would recommend is to try and get your body mass index stand to under 30 if it is currently above 30.

Getting down to a normal weight, if you are a overweight will reduce the prominence in these areas.

If you are a normal weight, liposuction or sometimes removal of the tissue in this region via surgery can often improve the prominence in this region.

Overall, my advice would be to achieve a normal body weight if your BMI is over 30 and seek a consultation with a specialist plastic surgeon to discuss the options for you.

I wish you the best of luck if you do decide to go ahead with treatment.

London Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 11 reviews

Lateral excesses after breast reduction can be fixed, but may require skin excision.

+1

Lateral to the breast, a prominence may result after breast reduction.  If there is not surplus skin, liposuction of the area can fix the problem.  If skin is in excess, it will need to be excised.  This will require an extension of the breast reduction incision.

Web reference: http://www.zubowicz.com/subpag,15-atlanta-breast-reduction.htm

Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 6 reviews

Extra tissue on the sides after breast reduction

+1

It is not uncommon for patients to have extra tissue - usually either skin or fat, or a combination of both - at the sides of the breasts and chest wall. This area may be treated with liposuction with skin excision at the time of breast reduction, or afterwards as a separate procedure.

New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 reviews

Excess tissue after a breast reduction

+1

Most likely the excess tissue can be removed by liposuction. Minor touch-ups and revisions are not uncommon.  In some circumstances, skin may be removed, too, by extending the lower breast reduction scar.  Your surgeon can recommend what is best for you.  It is not likely that insurance will cover this, but it may be covered if your breast reduction was covered.  It won't hurt to ask!

Austin Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 3 reviews

Underarms are not breasts

+1

Insurance covers, if medically necessary, a breast reduction. It will not cover removal or treatment of excess flab under your arms or lateral to the breasts.  That is not breast tissue.  It can be treated, however, often with liposuction.  If there is significant skin in that area, the skin might even be removed.

Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 16 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.