What is Breast Reduction Risk and Cost?

I have 40 DDD breast. I am 140 lbs. How much would it cost to get my breast reduced to a full C cup and what are some of the cons of this procedure?

Doctor Answers 12

Breast Reduction Risks

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Thank you for your question. You will have to decide if the benefits will achieve your goals and if the risks of breast reduction surgery and potential complications are acceptable.Fortunately, significant complications from breast reduction are infrequent. Every year thousands of women undergo successful breast reduction surgery, experience no major problems and are pleased with the results. Anyone considering surgery, however, should be aware of both the benefits and the risks.
I understand that every surgical procedure has risks, but how will I learn more so that I can make an informed decision?
The risks and complications are carefully explained either by the doctor or one of the nurses in the office during your initial consultation or at your preoperative appointment.
Some of the potential complications that may be discussed with you include bleeding, infection and reactions to anesthesia.
Following reduction, sometimes the breasts may not be perfectly symmetrical or the nipple height may be slightly varied. If desired, minor adjustments can be made at a later time. Permanent loss of sensation in the nipples or breasts may rarely occur. Revisionary surgery is sometimes helpful in certain instances where incisions may have healed poorly. In the unlikely event of injury to or loss of the nipple and areola, they usually can be satisfactorily reconstructed using skin grafts.
You can help to lessen certain risks by following the advice and instructions given to you both before and after surgery.

Dhaval M. Patel 
Double board certified
Plastic surgeon
Hoffman Estates

Hoffman Estates Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 100 reviews

Breast Reduction Risk and Cost

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Breast Reduction like other plastic surgery varies considerably across the country and even in the same area. South Florida tends to have lower fees then more expensive areas such as New York or Los Angeles. We charge $5000 + MD Anesthesia related costs for breast reduction. Without more information, it is not possible to know if insurance any part of these costs. Since you can get quality work at lower costs, patients will travel from throughout the state, the country, and internationally to have surgery in South Florida.

To ensure that you are receiving quality work at the most cost effective prices, consult with board certified plastic surgeons that own their own nationally accredited facilities. The quality must be maintained at the highest level to maintain accreditation. The surgeons also have incentive to hire and train quality staff (to ensure that surgery is efficient and enjoyable), to ensure comfortable and private facilities (to encourage referral), and to eliminate waste (to ensure that these facilities can compete effectively).

Some of the risks/potential complications associated with breast reduction surgery include: infection, bleeding, seroma, hematoma, wound healing problems, abnormal scarring ( hypertrophic or keloid).

Consult with 3 board certified plastic surgeons to understand your options and choose the surgeon/surgical plan that best meets your needs/objectives. 

Kris M. Reddy, MD, FACS
West Palm Beach Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 56 reviews

Costs and insurance

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Every insurance plan has their own unique criteria on whether they will cover a breast reduction.  More and more, we are seeing plans where a breast reduction is not a covered benefit.  If it is a covered benefit, some insurance plans set a minimum required amount of tissue to be remove in order to met their threshold for coverage.  Some set the amount in relation to your BMI (height and weight).  Others require extensive medical records documenting neck pain, back pain, and history of rashes.   The other alternative is to opt for a breast reduction as a self-pay option.   Start by visiting with a board certified plastic surgeon to learn more about your options.
Best wishes,

Dr. Basu
Houston, TX

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Breast Reduction Surgery, Risks Associated, and Average Cost

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The cost for breast reduction surgery varies from doctor to doctor and location to location. Recent statistics published by the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery indicate that the average fee for the surgeon is $5,272. This fee does not cover the cost that will be charged by the hospital or outpatient facility in which you will have your operation. It also does not cover the cost for anesthesia. Overall, the total cost of the procedure may be $10,000 or more. Often, insurance policies will cover this operation. It is very important that your physician take the time to find out what type of symptoms you have related to the large size of your breasts. These symptoms and the physical findings noted by your physician will be sent in a letter to your insurance company. Normally, a photograph of your breasts is also included. After consideration, your insurance company will then let you know whether or not they plan on covering your procedure.

Breast reduction surgery is one of the most predictably rewarding procedures performed by a plastic surgeon. Although there are no guarantees with any type of surgical procedure, it is very likely that you will have significant, if not total, relief of back, neck and shoulder pain associated with the large size of your breasts.

Like any surgical procedure, there are risks involved. Normally, an incision is made around the dark skin surrounding your nipple. This skin is called the areola. Another incision will extend from the bottom of the areola down to the crease of your breast.  Most often, there is also a scar along the crease of your breast. Although plastic surgeons are highly trained in surgery resulting in minimal scarring, it is possible that you will have scarring that will be worse than you anticipated. Because an incision is made all the way around the areola, there is a small chance that the blood supply remaining will not be enough to keep this area of the breast alive. This can lead to loss of the nipple and the dark skin surrounding it. With any operation there is some chance for infection and wound healing problems. Patients suffering from morbid obesity, hypertension and diabetes have higher rates of postoperative surgical wound healing problems. Cigarette smoking is a known factor in causing healing problems. Some patients may not be able to breast feed after this procedure. Overall, two-thirds of all women are unable to breast feed in the first place. The breast reduction surgery can further impair a woman’s chances of breast feeding. The degree of impairment may be associated with the procedure selected by your surgeon. It is very important to discuss your feelings and plans regarding future breast feeding before you have this procedure.

John J. Edney, MD
Omaha Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 133 reviews

Breast Reduction Risks?

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Thank you for the question.

Based on your description you may be a good candidate for breast reduction surgery; it tends to be one of the most patient pleasing operations we  perform.

Some of the risks/potential complications associated with breast reduction surgery include:  infection, bleeding, seroma, hematoma, wound healing problems, abnormal scarring ( hypertrophic or keloid),  loss of sensation, inability to breast-feed, breast asymmetry, necrosis of tissue or skin,  unsatisfactory cosmetic results, unpredictability of exact cup size postoperatively,  recurrence of the breast hypertrophy, and the potential for further surgery.  other risks  related to surgery in general include deep venous thrombosis (clots),  pulmonary embolism, pneumonia  and even death.

Fortunately, the majority of patients who undergo this procedure by well experienced board-certified plastic surgeons and board certified anesthesiologists do very well and complications tend  to be relatively minor and treatable. The severe complications are rare.

I hope this helps.

Cost of breast reduction

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Patients today have many excellent options in breast reduction surgery. There are many techniques that can reshape the breast, remove excess tissue that may be causing pain or discomfort, and create beautiful result.
The costs of a breast reduction depend on the technique that is used, the amount of time that is necessary, and the setting in which the surgery is performed. Many of our breast reductions can be done in an outpatient fashion in a surgery center.
However, keep in mind that many breast reductions may be covered by your insurance policy. If this is the case, investigate to see if they will cover the surgery at which specific facilities and if they will also cover for an overnight stay if that will help you.

Breast reduction and cost

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A breast reduction is a great procedure to make the breasts look nicer while improving symptoms of the macromastia (Large breasts). Some of the risks include healing issues like small wound separations, blood collections, fluid collections, some numbness, inability to breast feed, nipple loss, to name a few. The fees vary.

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

The most rewarding operation I perform

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Breast reduction patients usually complain about functional and cosmetic problems.Neck and shoulder pain,perspiration under the breasts, and difficulty finding bras are common complaints.The traditional anchor type scar can be quite noticeable.I use minimal scar incisions ,but it is still a tradeoff.With all that said, I have not had one patient regret the surgery.Most wish that they had done it sooner.The average board certified plastic surgeon charges around $5500,plus anaesthesia,surgery center and lab fees.Fifty per cent of my patients stay overnight at the surgery center

Joseph M. Perlman, MD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.3 out of 5 stars 27 reviews

Breast Reduction Costs

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Hi there-

As with all plastic surgery procedures, the costs of a breast reduction will depend on several variables:

The geographic location of the surgeon's practice- in areas of higher costs of living, our expenses will be greater, and therefore the fees usually are as well.

The time required to achieve your goal- I have done breast reduction procedures in as little as 1 1/2 hours, but a properly performed reduction usually takes 2 1/2-3 hours.

The location of the surgery- by this I mean whether the surgery will occur in a hospital, a surgery center, or the surgeon's own facility.

The reputation and expertise of the surgeon. This is something that I think is poorly understood by patients, who have been conditioned by the media to "shop for a price". While I would agree that finding a value that is comfortable for you is important, I think that shopping for a price incorrectly assumes that all surgeons are created equal and have equal education, training, and expertise. I can tell you that this is most definitely not true. We are no different than any other professional- our fees usually reflect the education, training, experience, and reputation that we have earned, and while only you can decide what you are willing to pay for your breast reduction, you will generally get what you paid for. Further, it is very important that you find a surgeon that you like and feel you can get along well with. Your relationship with your surgeon is an important one and you should choose him/her carefully.

Having said that, in my practice, breast reduction fees usually range between $5500 and $9000 (including facility, surgeon, and anesthesia fees).

Breast reduction can be very rewarding for both patient and surgeon- I hope you get what you want!

It depends on your location

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It is difficult on a forum such as this for plastic surgeons from all over the country to give you a price estimate for a given surgery. You need to go for a few consultations with board-certified plastic surgeons, talk with them, look at their before and after photos, and get a quote for the costs. You will hopefully get a lot of information from your consultation (take a list of questions you have). Best of luck.

Dr Edwards

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.