I Am 16 and Want a Breast Reduction. Can I Get One Even if my Breasts Aren't That Large?

Doctor Answers 6

Breast Reduction for Teenager?

Thank you for the question.

Unfortunately, it is not possible to give you good advice without  direct examination,  the problems your breasts are causing you, and your goals.

As  you think  about  breast reduction surgery make sure you do your homework and understand the potential risks and complications associated with  the procedure.  Unsatisfactory scarring is  one of the potential complications. Make sure you also understands that further surgery may be necessary in the future (for example if the breasts were to grow in size again).

On the other hand, breast reduction surgery is one of the most patient pleasing operations we perform and I think that for the right teenager (enough symptoms) it may be an excellent option (regardless of the age).

At some point, it will behoove you to consult with well experienced board-certified plastic surgeons.

Best wishes


San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,499 reviews

Breast reduction at 16

Without a formal exam with parental consent it would be difficult to suggest what wouyld be best for you. If your breasts are too large for your frame, they can be reduced.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Modest breast enlargement at 16: options for managment

I have one question: WHY? IF you have good reasons, discuss this with your pediatrician and parents. Discuss non-surgical methods first pror to surgery.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 82 reviews

Breast reduction at age 16

There are several issues with reducing breast size as well as augmenting breast size at age 16.

One is that you cannot sign your own consent for such a procedure, another is that breast growth may not be complete at age 16, and another is getting someone else to pay for it such as an insurance company. 

If the patient is 18 or older and is paying for the procedure a lot of this comes down to whether the surgery is feasible/reasonable and the patient understands the risks and consequences. The amount of the reduction or whether it's a lift rather than a reduction or even an augmentation ultimately comes down to the surgeon's judgment and the patient's consent. 

I am able to perform all breast surgery including reductions in an accredited office setting under local anesthesia with IV sedation but there is no option for insurance coverage. The procedure is between the patient and surgeon. The earliest age to do a breast reduction is a judgment call that requires multiple visits and discussion with both the patient and the parent who will sign the consent. I need to feel comfortable that the patient understands all the issues and gives her consent even though she can't sign for it and that it was not a sudden or coerced choice. 

Scott L. Replogle, MD
Boulder Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 1 review

A 16 year old cannot have ANY medical Treatment without her Parents' permission

The ONLY way a minor can have any surgery without her parents' permission is for a life threatening injury or medical condition. Breast reduction does not qualify as neither. Your patients must consent to this operation. Insurance companies have a hard time paying for very large and painful breasts which severely impact women's lives. No insurance company will permit / pay for reduction of breasts which "are not that large".   Sorry. 

Peter A. Aldea, MD
Memphis Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 109 reviews

Breast reduction in teenagers

Since you are only 16 years old and therefore a minor, one of your parents must consent to any surgery you are planning to undergo. You and a parent should consult with a board certified plastic surgeon who should go into all the details of the surgery, scars, recovery, and possible complications. In general, elective breast surgery in adolescent girls should be delayed until adulthood, unless there are major physical or psychological issues.

Olivia Hutchinson, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 8 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.