I Am a 36ddd and my Breasts Sag. Should I Get a Reduction and Lift or Just One?

I am 23 years old. My breasts grew super quickly when I was very young. They have never really been perky and I have had a lot of back and shoulder problems. I am now a 36ddd after having 2 kids. They now are sagging and very full mostly at the bottom. Would I benefit from a reduction? What about a lift? What would be best?

Doctor Answers 11

Lift is required, Reduction if desired

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I recommend a new technique called The Ultimate Breast Reduction.  This technique avoids vertical scars to lift your breasts and transfers the weight of the breast to the underlying muscle.  The advantage of this technique is you can keep the size you desire and still relieve your pain in your back and shoulders.  This technique reshaped the breast to increase projection, increase upper pole fullness and increase cleavage.  You can custome design the breast you desire and avoid the ugly vertical scars of the Wise pattern.  You may be an excellent candidate for this new technique.

Best Wishes,

Gary Horndeski, M.D.

Texas Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 230 reviews

A lift WILL reduce the size of your breast

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If you desire to have perkier breast, but do not desire a dramatic reduction in size a lift would benefit you.  During the breast lift, excess skin and tissue will be removed as your breast is repositioned higher.  The result will be a smaller breast of at least a cup size perhaps more and in most cases this eases pain issues associated with large breasts. No need to pay more if one procedure will give you optimal results.

Michael K. Obeng, MD, FACS
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon

Breast Reduction or Breast Lifting?

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Thank you for the question. Based on your description, you may be an excellent candidate for breast reduction surgery;  it is one of the most patient pleasing operations we perform.This operation is best done when you have achieved a long-term stable weight, if you are not there already.

 When patients undergo breast reduction surgery, the breast “lift” happens automatically. In other words, as breasts are reduced in size they are also lifted on the chest wall. This combination of reduction of breast weight and improved positioning on the chest wall tend to work together to alleviate neck, back, shoulder discomfort, at least to some degree.

 When the time is right, seek consultation with board-certified plastic surgeons who can demonstrate significant experience helping patients in your situation.

 Best wishes.

I Am a 36ddd and my Breasts Sag. Should I Get a Reduction and Lift or Just One?

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         If you have symptoms from large breasts, a breast reduction can be performed.  This will reduce the size of your breasts and help with the pain as well as lift the breasts.  Find a plastic surgeon with ELITE credentials who performs hundreds of breast lift and breast reduction procedures each year.  Then look at the plastic surgeon's website before and after photo galleries to get a sense of who can deliver the results.  Kenneth Hughes, MD Los Angeles, CA

I am a 36DDD should I get a breast reduction or a lift? Asks a new jersey patient.

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The breast reduction includes a lift. The decision about getting a breast reduction or a breast lift is dependent on your desire of breast size. Often times when the breasts are large and saggy there is a deficiency in tissue on the upper pole of the breast. That area appears hollow. I have a procedure that addresses this issue by doing an auto-augmentation of the breast by preserving the blood supply of the tissues that are normally discarded in a breast reduction and transferring them to the upper pole. You need to be evaluated to see if you are a candidate for this procedure. If you want your breast to be reduced in size, then a breast reduction is the operation of choice. If significant amounts of tissue is removed from the breasts, the insurance might cover the cost of a breast reduction. A breast lift or mastopexy is always considered a cosmetic procedure.

Breast uplift or reduction

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Hello Meggie, A reduction almost always entails a lift so it's not a question of one or the other. I think the questions to ask yourself are firstly, do you want to be a smaller cup size? Judging by your symptoms I'm guessing that less volume (ie reducing cup size) might be a good thing. Once you've clarified that, then its would be worth seeing a plastic surgeon to see what differing cup sizes look like in the real world (as opposed to the glossies!)

The other question is whether you have finished having children. Breast shape and size can change dramatically with pregnancy. Planning more children doesn't mean you shouldn't have breast surgery now, but it might mean a revisional procedure later.


Best Wishes

Adrian Knox, MBBS, FRACS
Sydney Plastic Surgeon

Reduction or lift?

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It sounds like you would benefit from a breast reduction.  A breast reduction combines a the aesthetic benefits of a lift with a volume reduction which will help alleviate symptoms of back and neck/shoulder pain.  Discuss your options with your plastic surgeon.

Elizabeth Kim, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

36DDD - reduction vs lift

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Hi - thanks for your question. If you are having back pain and problems with skin breakdown under your breasts, I would recommend a breast reduction. The breast reduction actually incorporates a lift as well, so it would address both of your complaints. A lift alone would not decrease the weight of your breasts, and your back pain would likely persist. Also, you may consider getting your surgery after you are certain you are done having children. Breast reduction can decrease your chances of successfully breastfeeding, and your breasts may grow again and stay large if you have more children. 

Tracy Kayan, MD
Minneapolis Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 11 reviews

Breasts sag and possibly need a lift?

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You may need a lift or a reduction. It is difficult to say without seeing you in person for a formal exam.  Good luck.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Breast reduction vs Breast lift

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Pictures would have helped to answer your question in a more specific manner. A breast lift is part of the breast reduction procedure and will give you the benefit of reducing the symptoms associated with large breasts and more pleasant aesthetic appearance. If you are good candidate for a breast reduction, a portion of your costs will be covered by medical insurance. The type of breast reduction will depend on your specific anatomy and goals.

Discuss this with a board certified plastic surgeon.


Good Luck


David Evdokimow, MD
Morristown Plastic Surgeon

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.