I am 53. My breast are 44DD.

I have had serious should/neck problems over the last two or three years. MRI revealed two tears. Thre is numbness running down from my shoulder to my hand. It occured to me that all these problems are probably from my breast. I can't sleep at night because my breat pull my shoulder causing pain. Is this a breast reduction indicator?

Doctor Answers 13

Breast reduction may be right for you

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Reducing the size of heavy, large breasts can decrease the pain and discomfort associated with them. There's a good chance that you'll experience relief following surgery if your tension and pain is caused by your breasts. Talk to your surgeon to find out. They can also help you get insurance to cover your surgery.

Breast Reduction Candidate?

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Thank you for the question.

You may be a good candidate for breast reduction surgery. However, prior to contemplating this operation you should be evaluated by a spine specialist to rule out spinal cord pathophysiology that may be causing your symptoms. If this is a case you should be  treated for the spine problem prior to breast reduction surgery.

Having said that, breast reduction surgery may still be indicated to help with chronic neck back and shoulder discomfort. It is one of the most patient pleasing operations we perform.

I hope this helps.

Breast Reduction - ?Pain From Enlarged Breasts...I Have Two Tears on my MRI

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Hi msbrena,

Your symptoms may well be due at least partially to your breasts, but with an MRI that demonstrate two tears you already have a reason for that pain.  So the question will be how to show it's from the breast tissue.

A 44DD bra cup size, if accurate (many breast reduction candidates underestimate their bra sizes; ie, they wear a bra that's actually too small for them!) may not be large enough to qualify for a breast reduction (from an insurance standpoint) and, correspondingly, to be responsible for a great degree of the symptoms.  In general, the larger the breasts, the more likely they are to cause symptoms.

Your best bet is to have one or more consultations with plastic surgeons near you and to see what they say.  You'll need their help with any precertifcation issues anyway, so you might as well get their opinions and advice early on in the process.

I hope that this helps, and good luck,

Dr. E

Pain from breast size

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It is not clear what you mean by the two tears on MRI.  Your doctor would need to do a careful history and physical to determine the relationship of your large breasts and your symptomotology. Although it will not prove the etiology or orgins of your neck pathology, one easy test is to walk around with your breasts craded in your arm to support their weight and see ifthat relieves your pain or alleviates the numbness. That simulates the reduction of weight a breast reduction surgery will produce. If your symptoms are unchanged, the surgery might not help your discomfort.

Robin T.W. Yuan, M.D.

Robin T.W. Yuan, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon

Symptoms strongly related to enlarged breasts

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From your question, it appears that your enlarged breasts are a significant source of your symptoms and generalized discomfort. At a 44DD, it sounds like a breast reduction should be a strong consideration for you.

You should consider seeing a board certified plastic surgeon in your area who can then assess your situation and make the appropriate recommendations.

Steven Turkeltaub, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 33 reviews

I am 53. My breast are 44DD.

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From your posted medical history and scan findings you are a great candidate for a Breast Reduction. Seek a boarded PS in your area or that accepts your health insurance. This PS will take your photos and address a predetermination of benefits letter to your insurance company. After the response than you can determine what your out of pocket costs will/would be ( most cases around a $1,000). Schedule the operation. Best of luck 

Breast reduction and neck pain

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Certainly very large breasts may aggravate neck and back pain, and sometimes in performing a reduction symtpoms do improve.  You need to be seen and examined.

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

Neck Pain & Reduction Mammaplasty

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With a positive MRI, it is unlikely that a reduction mammaplasty will totally correct your symptoms.  I have found, in patients with similar situations, that a reduction will markedly improve your pain at times.  Ask your orthopaedic or neurosurgeon if he/she thinks that you might benefit from a breast reduction.

John Whitt, MD (retired)
Louisville Plastic Surgeon

You may be a candidate for a breast reduction

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Classic symptoms indicating a need for breast reduction can include back pain, neck and shoulder pain, rashes in the crease below the breast, and numbness running along the arm into the hand. You seem to suffer from many of these conditions, indicating that breast reduction may be indicated.

Your best bet is evaluation from a board certified plastic surgeon. He or she can evaluate you and determine if you're a good candidate for surgery. In some cases, insurance companies will cover the cost associated with surgery; this requires documentation of your symptoms and well as photographs demonstrating large breasts and grooving from your bra straps.

Hope this helps. All the best - Sam Jejurikar

Breast reduction Indications

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Shoulder, neck and back discomfort, as well as pulling sensations within the breasts and difficulty sleeping are all frequent complaints of women with large breasts, and may be improved with a breast reduction.  I am not clear what you mean by "Tears" seen on an MRI, but they may represent something that would potentially need to be addressed separately.  I would recommend that you see a board-certified plastic surgeon for evaluation and discussed regarding the benefits you may obtain from a breast reduction.

Good luck.

Craig S. Rock, MD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 29 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.