Can You Breast Feed if You Have Had a Breast Reduction?

Doctor Answers 7

Breast Feeding after Breast Reduction

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Although many can breast feed after breast reduction, the inability to breast feed after breast reduction is a know complication of this procedure. The extensiveness of the procedure and technique may also be a factor.

Loss of ability to breast feed is a risk

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Tell your surgeon before surgery about your intention of breastfeeding. They can customize your surgery to reduce the adverse effects.

Breast Reduction and Breast Feeding?

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Thank you for the question.
The majority of patients who undergo breast reduction surgery using a " pedicle technique” ( not free nipple grafting) will be able to breast-feed after the procedure.
Best wishes.

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Breast Reduction and Breast Feeding

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Most women who have breast reduction should be able to successfully breast feed their children if they desire to. Although the nipple is moved to a more appropriate position, it usually remains attached to the underlying system of mammary ducts and this will permit breast feeding. In a very small number of cases the nipple will have been detached from the duct system and reattached as a nipple graft. These women will be unable to breast feed.

Leo Keegan, MD
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon

Breast feeding after breasrt reduction

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This is a common question. It is difficult to predict whether or nor you will adequately breast feed after surgery.  Most patients will have to supplement.

VIDEO Breast Feeding and Nursing

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There are two questions here: CAn you breast feed and should you breast feed. I have prepared a Video on this. Follow the link below by selecting "more" and proceeding to video link. 

Breast reduction does not interfere with breast feeding.

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A recent large well controlled scientific study showed that about 85% of women with very large breasts can breast feed successfully, WHETHER OR NOT THEY HAD A PREVIOUS BREAST REDUCTION.  In other words, some women with large breasts cannot breast feed, but having a breast reduction does not make their chances any worse.

This study was actually a little surprising, because it included different techniques of breast reduction, and surgeons of varying ability.  Just to make sure, we use a technique (Hall-Findlay) that preserves normal anatomy.

George J. Beraka, MD (retired)
Manhattan 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.