I Am Having Breast Reduction in One Week! I Am 5'6" and Weight 160. I Am a 36DD. I Am Having Trouble Deciding What Size to Go?

I Am Having Breast Reduction in One Week! I Am 5'6" and Weight 160. I Am a 36DD. I Am Having Trouble Deciding What Size to Go

Doctor Answers 9

Breast reduction surgery

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Breast reduction surgery  is designed to give you great relief from the excessive pressure on your shoulders and back.  The amount of tissue removed has to be judged properly to try to give you an even balance between the two breasts, and often the final size will be a C cup( if possible).   If more breast tissue is removed, perhaps the circulation to the nipple and areola will be inadequate to keep them alive and you may suffer a loss of tissue .  Insurance companies will require a certain volume of tissue to be removed to be covered by them( some of the time, but not guaranteed),  but every Plastic Surgeon would advise you that  only enough tissue should be removed from the breast that would give you a good result, not specifically to satisfy the insurance company.


Good luck to you.


Frank Rieger M.D.  Tampa Plastic Surgeon

Breast reduction sizing

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The first question is whether your surgery is being covered by insurance. If so, your plastic surgeon must remove the minimum required gram weight or the case will be denied on retrospective review. Second, your age is significant as, if you are young, we can expect a weight gain over the years or with pregnancy, raising concern that the breasts will once again be uncomfortable. I agree completely with Dr Chappell's comments!!

Don't go too small

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In my experience  since you have had large breasts for so long. You don't want to go to small most people come in with a set answer of full c. That is the most common size people request but you should discuss with your surgeon what is possible

Sanjay Lalla, MD, FACS
West Orange Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 51 reviews

Size Decision For Breast Reduction

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Dear Summergirl,

The size of your breasts should be what you feel best for you. Your surgeon will guide you and help you make a well informed decision but at the end of the day you are the one to be satisfied with the size to be.

Also, if your surgery is to be covered by your health insurance due to given symptoms caused by the current size of your breasts (such as backache, neck ache, etc.) certain criteria are to be met by your surgery to be covered.

If the surgery is to be elective, then you make sure not too go too small because you may regret it down the line.


I encourage you to trust the surgeon of your choice as far as he/she is board certified with extensive experience in that field.


Thank you for your inquiry and the best of luck to you.

Dr. Sajjadian

Ali Sajjadian, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 205 reviews

Breast size after breast reduction

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Certainly I have plenty of patients who want to be a certain cup size after breast reduction, but I generally recommend we aim for a certain breast size range and not a certain cup size.  The goal is relief of symptoms and, generally, putting patients in a breast size proportional to their overall body size.  People who want to be particularly small after breast reduction, or who want to remain particularly large after breast reduction, I feel, need extensive counseling so that their expectations are appropriately gauged.  When expectations are realistic, the results are generally the best. 

At 5 feet 6 inches tall and 160 pounds, being in the C cup range is a reasonable expectation with regard to matching your new breasts to your body shape/size.

Best of luck to you.

Decisions on sizing for a Breast Reduction

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You really want to consult with your plastic surgeon and make sure that he has an understanding of what sizing you would go with because of course, it is your body.  It is very normal to not know exactly what size you would want to go.  One suggestion I would have would be to research similar body frames of yourself online and print out photos to show your plastic surgeon what look you are going for so that he has a better understanding of what results you want to achieve.

Decisions before breast reduction surgery

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I think you still have time to talk to your plastic surgeon about what size you want to be. It is really hard to give an accurate size after breast reduction surgery but, good communication with your plastic surgeon and reviewing before and after photos will help you and you surgeon to reach a common ground.

Moneer Jaibaji, MD
San Diego Plastic Surgeon

Breast Reduction and Resulting Size?

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Congratulations on your decision to proceed with breast reduction surgery; this operation tends to be one of the most patient pleasing operations we perform.

Before undergoing the breast reduction procedure it will be very important to communicate your size goals with your surgeon.  Most patients under going breast reduction surgery wish to achieve  enough of a reduction to help with their symptoms while remaining proportionate with the remainder of their torso. 

With the goal of improving communication with my patients I find the use of photographs of “goal” pictures (and breasts that are too big or too small)  very helpful. I have found that the use of words such as “natural” or “C cup” etc means different things to different people and therefore prove unhelpful.
 Also, as you know, cup size varies depending on who makes the bra; therefore, discussing desired cup  size may also be inaccurate.

Best wishes with your upcoming surgery.

Breast reduction and final size

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I think it is important to talk to yoru surgeon about your goals.  It is hard to "nail down" cup size, but certainly a "ballpark" idea would be nice.

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