Breast Reduction Consult?

What type of medical information should I bring to my physician at a breast reduction consultation? What other aspects of my life and schedule should be discussed? What should I be looking for in a doctor?

Doctor Answers 15

Breast Reduction

Mainly you need to bring your insurance information, and any health history that relates to any kind of treatment for back, neck or shoulder pain:  chiropractor, physical therapy, or similar. Insurance may cover breast reduction for some women. It depends on the patient’s breast size, body type, and symptoms. Most insurance companies have a formula based on your height, your weight, and how much your surgeon estimates will be removed. Usually removal of about a pound from each breast is required for insurance coverage. Health care providers are mercenary about denying coverage for breast reduction. They don’t care if your clothes don’t fit or you can’t exercise. In my experience, they don’t even care about your pain and discomfort, much less psychological embarrassment. It all boils down to your height and weight versus how much breast tissue will be removed. You can’t necessarily pick your desired breast size or shape. To remove less than the insurance company’s formula requires places the procedure in the realm of cosmetic surgery. That means you pay the bill. Your surgeon should get a detailed medical history because some health- care providers demand a history of treatment for back pain to authorize coverage. I measure the breasts and often take photographs to be mailed with the insurance letter. If I don’t comply with the rules, the insurance provider— who holds all the cards—may not authorize paying for the procedure.  All the best!  Dr. Joe

Minneapolis Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 269 reviews

Breast Reduction Consult and Patient Medical Infromation

When seeking a consultation for breast reduction it is helpfull to have the following information available:

1)  health history with any medical problems---diabetes, high blood preesure, heart disease, etc.

2)  medications and allergies

3) a recent mammogram

4) documentation from your primary physician if you have had back or breast pain associated with the size/weight of your breasts.

If you decide to have breast reduction, you should plan the surgery at a time when you are not under stress from family or work.  You should give yourself at least three weeks after the surgery before returning to exercise or strenuous activities.  In choosing a surgeon,  seek out a board certified plastic surgeon who routinely performs breast reduction surgery

Vincent D. Lepore, MD
San Jose Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 56 reviews

Consultation with a plastic surgeon

First you should make sure that your consultation is with a board certified plastic surgeon as he or she will have had the necessary training to discuss breast reduction surgery with you. A plastic surgeon is a doctor who will need to know all your medical information in order to evaluate your concerns best. He or she should be able to ask you questions and help you provide the information needed. However, it will speed the process up and leave more time for discussion if you bring a list of your medications, allergies and reactions (if you have any), previous surgeries and hospitalizations and any medical problems you have (such as high blood pressure). At the consultation, you should feel comfortable asking questions and with the answers you receive. You should also feel comfortable with the office staff as often you will be dealing with them more than the doctor. I hope this helps you feel comfortable with your consultation and good luck to you. Breast reduction surgery can be one of the most satisfying of all surgeries.

Margaret Skiles, MD (retired)
Sacramento Plastic Surgeon
3.6 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

Preparation for Breast Reduction Consult

There is no special preparation needed for your consultation.  You will want to be able to discuss your medical history including any medications or allergies, past medical conditions or surgeries.  If you are considering breast reduction surgery and are a smoker, this would be the ideal time to quit as it would be optimal to have quit at least 6 weeks or more prior to surgery.  You should look for a doctor that takes the time to answer all your questions and thoroughly discuss the procedure, risks and recovery process in detail.  You will want to feel comfortable with your surgeon and make sure your surgeon is board certified in Plastic Surgery.  Review your surgeons before and after photos as well.

Marialyn Sardo, MD
La Jolla Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 6 reviews

For Best, Safest Results, a Good Relationship is Necessary

Hi there-

In order for your breast reduction experience to be the safest, most pleasant experience possible, with the very best outcome, it is important for you to think of your relationship with your chosen surgeon just like you would any other important relationship in your life.

Share ALL relevant information in an open and respectful manner, and listen carefully to all opinions, instructions, etc...

Personality and your feeling of being comfortable in the doctor's presence are important, as you are obviously trusting this person with your health and happiness-

On the other hand, this would not be as important to me as the surgeon's education, training, experience, and the outcomes they have produced. 

Armando Soto, MD, FACS
Orlando Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 157 reviews

Large breast

As with any medical problem when going to a new doctor for the first time you should bring with you all the available medical information ; allergy list and medication list , current problems, a family history . Also a true account about how the breast are bothering you and what has been done to date to correct the problem. 

Walter D. Gracia, MD
Fort Worth Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 3 reviews

Breast reduction consultation

When I meet with patients who are considering a breast reduction there are many pieces of information that make the visit more productive.  First, it is vital that a patient be able to provide an accurate account of their medical history and a list of past surgeries.  Patients should also bring a list of current medications and allergies.  Any family illnesses should also be discussed.  In regards to the breasts, patients will need to give a complete account of symptoms including neck and back pain, shoulder grooves, arm numbness, rashes, skin infections, and exercise limitations.  It is also important for the surgeon to know which non-surgical therapies have been tried such as special bras, weight loss, pain meds, powders, or physical therapy.  Any supporting documentation form primary care providers, chiropractors or physical therapists is also helpful.  In addition, any history of breast lumps, a family history of breast cancer, or abnormal mammograms should also be be discussed.  For many patients, it is best to meet with more than one board certified plastic surgeon to determine which one is right for them.

Kelly Gallego, MD, FACS
Yuba City Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 45 reviews

Medical History

A complete medical history intake will be performed during your consultation which includes a history of family, surgeries in the past, your lifestyle, medications you are on etc..   the greatest risks to any surgical procedure are underlying medical issues that need to be discused openly in order to move ahead safely

Edward J. Bednar, MD
Charlotte Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 125 reviews

What to bring to a breast reduction consult

Great question! Documentation, Documentation, Documentation! In addition to photos required by your insurance carrier, documentation by other specialists that reduction is required is a must. Letters from pain specialist, orthopedist, acupuncturist, chiropractor, family physician, etc, etc. Remember, insurance will find any reason to deny care. It is up to you to 'build a case' for surgical need.

What to look for in a surgeon? Ask for before and after pics. If you like what you see... Also, and probably most important, make sure he is a Board Certified Plastic surgeon. You should find out if he is up to date on the most recent techniques, like the no vertical scar breast reduction. Best wishes, Dr. H

Gary M. Horndeski, MD
Texas Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 223 reviews

Breast reduction

During consultation, you should discuss your entire medical history, inlcuding all medical problems, hospitalizations, surgeries, medications, social history, allergies, etc..  This all contributes to the decision to have surgery safely.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 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.