Is 200 Grams of Fat in Breast Reduction a Large Amount?

My insurance company will not approve my breast reduction unless the surgeon takes 850 grams of fat. My surgeon has recommended 650 grams. Is the extra 200 grams too much?

Doctor Answers 16

200 grams for Breast Reduction

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This is one surgery that really gets me going. There is nothing more aggravating than having some pencil pusher tell me how I have to do my surgery. Breast reduction is just this surgery. By setting an arbitrary amount of breast volume to be removed only to, in the end, make the stock holders happy is outrageous.

Get your surgery done in the best cosmetic way possible. Your insurance company will raise their excision amount more and more just so they don't have to pay for it. You're lucky they'll pay anything. I know money is often the issue but never compromise the appearance for the rest of your life for the sake of some over paid insurance company.

850 grams is a lot for most people

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The difference between 650 and 850 grams all depends on the body shape and breast size you start with. If you have a small frame and your breasts are large, but not enormous, then going up to 850 grams could make a big difference in how you look. However, if your frame is bigger and your breasts are very large, then it may be ok.

One option you may have (depending on your insurance company) is to pay for the procedure out-of-pocket initially, and if the surgeon takes off sufficient weight, then bill your insurance company retroactively.

Good luck. I hate insurance companies!

Anthony Youn, MD, FACS
Detroit Plastic Surgeon

Breast Reduction

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Breast Reduction is a complicated procedure that is best done by those with the most training and experience. It is very difficult to determine the resultant cup size and shape based solely on the number of grams that are removed from your breast to best match your ideal breast image without an examination by a board certified plastic surgeon. Not just any board certified plastic surgeon, but one with many years of frequently performing breast reduction and lift surgeries, including different approaches, techniques and even fat transfer and implant choices if you are lacking superior breast fullness.
This is because several measurements—not to mention breast characteristics such as density—are needed to determine how much and where to remove breast tissue to meet your goals. Without knowing your existing breast shape, dimensions, and the density of your breast tissue, it would be difficult to make this determination. For example, the same volume of breast tissue will weigh different amounts (measured in ounces or grams) in different people depending on its density. The existing base width of your breast and what you will ultimately want to look like will determine, in many cases, the maximal volume and weight that will need to be removed for the best result.

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Breast Reduction And Insurance Company Requirements?

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Thank you for the question.

200 g of breast tissue can make a difference with your level of satisfaction ( regarding breast size)  after breast reduction surgery. In my opinion, this  potential dissatisfaction is not worth the risk. You will be better off finding a way to self finance a procedure or find another insurance company (with different policy).

Best wishes.

Breast reduction and weight of tissue removed

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Although 200 grams of tissue is not a large amount in a breast reduction, the amount or weight of tissue should not be dictated by the insurance company.  Forcing your doctor to remove a greater amount could compromise your result or even result in wound healing problems such as nipple loss.

Vincent D. Lepore, MD
San Jose Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 63 reviews

Don't go too small with breast reduction just to meet insurance requirement.

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I would not do it.  Taking an extra two hundred grams of tissue during breast reduction can make your breasts too small, and you will not be happy. 

George J. Beraka, MD (retired)
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon

Breast reduction volume

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Breast reduction volume can vary a great deal.  While 200 gms may be a 'spit in the bucket" for very larger breasted women, in others it may be all that they have. It would be hard to tell without examining you first.  Taking out too much may make your breasts look too small.

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

Breast Reduction

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It is very difficult to say if 200 makes that much of a difference. It all depends on how much your start with. I can say that 850 grams is a very big reduction to begin with so if you have a lot of breast tissue the 200 may not be that much.

However, as the other doctors mentioned, there is no guarantee as to how much breast tissue needs to be removed. We can only estimate the amount, and if it fall just below the required amount some insurance companies will not cover it.

So, if there is ever an issue then the recommendation is to turn the case into a cash account.

Good luck.

Farbod Esmailian, MD
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 88 reviews

200 grams is not too much for breast reduction

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Removal of 200 grams of fat on its own is not too much, but going from 600 to 800 grams can make a definite difference to the appearance of your breasts after surgery. This cannot be determined by an em but only by examing you in person and also determine how large or small you want to be after surgery.

Amount for breast reduction

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Dear Philly

One thing I never do is guarantee how much tissue I will remove in a breast reduction. My concern is the overall shape and appearance of the breast. The amount of breast tissue needed to be removed is based on height and weight. If all you are concerned with is the insurance covering the reduction then advise your surgeon that this is your concern and you are willing to accept smaller breasts as long as they are covered, but as always, be careful what you wish for, you might get it.

Good luck on your surgery

Steven Schuster MD FACS

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.