Is the Anchor Pattern Breast Reduction a Reasonable Choice for my Dr to Decide On?

Hello, I have a BR booked for December. I like the Dr & think he has a lot of experience, but I'd really appreciate the input of a pro! He has suggested the Anchor/Wise pattern reduction and will be putting in drains. Does this sound like a reasonable option, or would a vertical reduction be better? My Stats: Height: 5'4, Weight: 137lbs Current size: 34DD Goal size: 34C Age: 30 I really appreciate your time! VB

Doctor Answers 11

Breast Reduction Type?

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Thank you for the question.

It is not possible to give you any type of precise advice without direct examination or viewing pictures.

Given that you have chosen a experienced board-certified plastic surgeon I would suggest that you go with his advice;  is important to have confidence in your surgeons experience and abilities. If you lack this confidence that a second opinion in person may be indicated.

Best wishes with your breast reduction surgery; it is one of the most patient pleasing operations we perform.

Anchor or vertical breast reduction

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There are many factors that go into this decision including the experience of the surgeon. The vertical does require some "pleating" of the excess skin which shrinks with time. You should be comfortable with this appearance so that you will not be surprised.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 86 reviews

Vertical vs anchor reduction

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To some extent the choice of closure of a breast reduction is a matter of personal choice of the surgeon.  In general most patients will prefer less scarring, which implies a vertical closure would be better.  If there is a tremendous amount of redundant skin this may not be possible.  I prefer to start with a vertical closure and then remove redundant tissue underneath the breast as needed.


Tal Raine MD

Talmage J. Raine, MD, FACS
Chicago Plastic Surgeon

Pictures would be helpful

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I like to use the anchor type of reduction when removing a large amount of breast tissue and moving the nipples significantly higher. Otherwise, a lollipop type incision should suffice. Pictures of your breasts would help sort this out. Regardless, an experienced plastic surgeon will be familiar with all techniques and should steer you in the right direction.

Bala S. Chandrasekhar, MD - RETIRED
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon

Anchor vs vertical for breast reduction

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Without an exam it is diffiuclt to say. I usually use a vertical for smaller breast reductions in patients that I do not have to raise the nipple too much.

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

Anchor breast reduction

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Your best bet is to do what your surgeon feels will give the best results in his hands. Some of us can do all the types of breast reductions and can decide which is best for any particular patient. If your surgeon only does one type of breast reduction and he gets good results and you are comfortable with your surgeon then go with his advice.

John P. Stratis, MD
Harrisburg Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 37 reviews

Anchor pattern breast reduction can be a reasonable choice

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The anchor pattern breast reduction was the 'standard' in breast reduction until the past seven to nine years, and the US has been slow to adopt the vertical or short scar technique. We like the vertical pattern reduction because of the reduced scar and rapid recovery. Still, in some instances the anchor pattern will simply work better, such as a very large reduction of 1000 grams or more, or a breast with a lax skin envelope as the anchor will take up skin excess in two directions rather than one. The anchor pattern has given very nice results over decades, and has given a pleasing breast shape and good nipple sensation. If the scar is acceptable to you, you should do fine, though if concerned you could get an additional opinion.

Best of luck,


Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 44 reviews

Anchor Pattern Breast Reduction a Reasonable Choice

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A posted photo would have greatly helped to determine the better type reduction. My guess is the anchor might be just right for you. See 3 boarded surgeons in your area. Or post a photo>

Not an advocate of the Wise pattern.

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I was trained, and as faculty taught residents on hundreds of Wise pattern reductions.  I quit doing them about 9 years ago.

Except for really large reductions (like removal of over 900g of tissue from each side) I have found no advantage in doing the Wise pattern reductions. There is excess scar on the bottom, and the point where the 2 scars met sometimes heals poorly. I feel that the horizontal incision disrupts the fold of the breast too. 

Patients without much tissue in the upper breast are just about guaranteed a "pancakey" or bottomed out breast over time.

My own experience is that I had much more issue with partial loss or decreased nipple sensation using the Wise pattern than I do with the LeJour technique. 

John LoMonaco, MD, FACS
Houston Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 276 reviews

Is the Anchor Pattern Breast Reduction a Reasonable Choice for my Dr to Decide On?

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Since i do both procedures there are a number of technical issues that go into my decision.  I would suggest that you go over with your doctor why he feels one technique is better for you than another technique. 

Robert D. Goldstein, MD
Bronx 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.