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If I Lose Too Much Weight Can I Still Have a Breast Reduction?

I am 5'4" and 210lbs. I know that I have to lose weight before a reduction so I won't bring it up until I do. My breasts are at a 38G. My neck and back CONSTANTLY hurt and I have scars from my bras. I've always had a larger chest but I've not always been this overweight and I guess my fear is if I lose too much weight will I not be able to get a reduction? Will my breast already be small to the point where I can't get one done. My insurance will have to pay for it because I cannot afford it.

Doctor Answers (17)

Weight loss before breast reduction

+3

Loosing weight before you undergo breast reduction would be beneficial in a number of regards. Being closer to your "ideal body weight" will make surgery safer. It is unlikely that you would loose so much weight in your breasts that your symptoms resolve without a breast reduction.

Good luck with your weight loss efforts. If you are struggling with weight loss, consider asking your doctor for a referral to a nutritionist.


New York Plastic Surgeon

Lose weiht befor breast reduction.

+2

Lose the weight.  Get good photo documentation.  Work hand in hand with your doctor.  Once you get to the weight that is correct you will still need a substantial reduction of breast and skin along with a lift .  Your insurance will cover if you document, document, and document and your doctor does the same.

George Commons, MD
Palo Alto Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Weight loss and breast reduction

+2

While weight loss will certainly cause some decrease in your breast size, I doubt that you will decrease in size to a point of not needing a reduction.  Most women with very large breast often lose weight in other areas first and the breast tend to be the last thing to decrease in size.  Lets say that you lose 50-60 #.  You will likely be smaller than the 38 G you are now, but still likely a 36/38 DDD.

As you get close to your goal weight (20-25#), go see a local PS and consider getting the reduction done then.  Often the last few pounds are difficult to lose especially if the weight of your breast is inhibiting exercise.

Delio Ortegon, MD
San Antonio Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 15 reviews

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Breast Reduction Hurdles?

+1

Thank you for the question and pictures.

It sounds like you are an excellent candidate for the breast reduction procedure;  it is one of the most patient pleasing operations we perform.

You are doing the right thing by losing weight first.  Doing so will maximize the chances of achieving the best results possible and minimize the chances that further surgery will be necessary in the near future.

Given your concerns regarding health insurance coverage you may want to check  the insurance companies policy in regards to breast reduction surgery.

At some point, consultation with a well experienced board-certified plastic surgeon will be helpful.

Best wishes.

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 792 reviews

Breast Reduction - Weight Loss and Insurance Coverage

+1

Hi MsLoraine in Holyoke, MA,

It sounds (and looks) to me like you can lose some weight and still obtain insurance coverage for a breast reduction.

However, it doesn't matter what I think - what matters is what your insurance company thinks.  In order to find out, you need to work with a plastic surgeon.  Specifically, he or she will need to take some photos of you and submit them to your insurance company and then find out what the criteria are in your specific case.  Each insurance company is different, and companies often have more than one plan - different plans may have different criteria.  And they are always changing.  That's the first step.

The next, though, is whether your surgeon will accept your insurance.  You may want to start, then, by getting a list of surgeons who participate in your insurance plan.  Then, at least, you'd have that issue addressed.

I hope that this helps, and good luck,

Dr. E

Alan M. Engler, MD, FACS
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 155 reviews

Weight loss nad reduction

+1

There is no question you should get to your ideal weight.will your breast be smaller? Yes will you still need a reduction? Probably yes as well.

Robert Brueck, MD
Fort Myers Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 27 reviews

Will losing weight reduce my chances of obtaining approval from my insurance company for breast reduction surgery?

+1

It would be prudent for your health, ultimate result from a breast reduction surgery and anesthesia risk to lose substantial weight prior to undergoing the procedure. From your photos, it would be highly unlikely that your breasts would shrink so much in size that your insurance company would not provide coverage for the procedure. Many of them will correlate your weight with a specific minimum of breast tissue that needs to be removed. Therefore, at a lower weight, they will require less breast tissue to be removed in order for insurance coverage.

Steven Turkeltaub, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 21 reviews

Will losing weight shrink breasts too much to keep from being approved for breast reduction?

+1

Based on your photos I doubt that your breasts will get too small with weight reduction.  They look quite a bit out of proportion to the rest of your body and they likely will stay that way.  I'm sure that you will feel better with the extra weight off.

Kenneth L. Stein, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 11 reviews

Breast reduction surgery

+1

Congratulations for your plan to lose weight! It will make you feel better and breast reduction surgery will be easier and safer.

Even though with weight loss your breast will be smaller but they will be still "out of proportion" and I would imagine your insurance may cover for the procedure even than.

Guido P. Gutter MD
Evansville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Lose weight before reduction

+1

Your primary issue in my opinion is your truncal obesity.  This is a much more serious problem than your large breasts.  Your truncal obesity puts you at a much higher risk for a long list of diseases.  A breast reduction will do nothing to address your obesity, although you make look a little slimmer afterwards.  Obese patients also have a much higher risk of post-operative problems like infection, delayed healing and blood clots.  You need to put your overall health first and consult a weight loss specialist.  Your breasts will shrink with weight loss and you may find you will only need a lift after you have acheived a healthy weight.  I find it very odd that you would even think of hanging onto all that excess weight just because of insurance coverage for a reduction.  I'm sure this is not the answer you want but it is my honest opinion.

Lisa Lynn Sowder, M.D.

Lisa L. Sowder, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 48 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.