Asymmetry After Breast Reduction

I had a breat reduction in Nov, 2010 and I ended up getting a bad infection, my scars are very thick, red and sore my doctor said it was normal. My question is, one breat is a whole cup size larger than the other and I am not happy. My docotr said it happens and that not everyones breasts are the same size. Any advice on what I should do? My insurance covered my procedure but they won't cover a second one, and I don't have the money to get it fixed. But I feel I should be happy with them.

Doctor Answers 17

Breast Reduction Complication Correction is Covered by Insurance.

I am sorry you had these problems.  Infections happen, that is true.  It is your doctor responsibility to care for you and help resolve the consequences of an infection.  Cup size shoud end up very similar.  Bad scars can be improbed with many many techniques.  Insurance WILL cover the consequesces of surgical complications.  Go back and talk at LENGTH with  your doctor.  You need to get a plan of correction.  It is possible.   Good Luck.

Asymmetry after breast reduction

Some asymmetry immediately after breast reduction is common and may be due to differences in swelling, especially if one side had healing complicated by infection. This may take several months to resolve

If the asymmetry persists after swelling has diminished then you should visit your surgeon again and explore possible options . If your insurance company denies your request for revision, you should appeal that denial and stress that the problem is due to a post op complication from the original surgery. Most surgeons will do everything possible to help a patient with a less than optimal outcome.

Mark Preston, MD
Columbus Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Asymmetry after Breast Reduction?

Thank you for the question. I'm sorry to hear about the complications you have experienced after breast reduction surgery. Generally, plastic surgeons wish to see their patients as happy as possible after surgery. I would suggest that you continue to communicate  your questions and concerns with your plastic surgeon as calmly as possible. it is possible that,  with some persistence on your part,  that revisionary breast reduction surgery will be covered through the insurance plan. Best wishes.

Breast Reduction - Complications, Healing, Discomfort, Asymmetry

Hi AshCurtin in Chicago, IL,

I'm obviously very sorry for the problems you've had.

There are, of course, risks with all surgical procedures, and among the known complications of breast reductions are infection, scarring, and resultant asymmetry.  That being said, it's always unfortunate to have a result such as you've described.

However, it may be possible to make your results much more even and to improve the appearance of the scars and the breasts.  In general, that would involve a slight reduction of the larger one, and removal of the scars on the side that has the thickened scars.  That procedure is called a scar revision, and involves removing the existing scars and reapproximating (realigning) the tissues with the hope and intent that they will heal better than the first time around.  That is usually the case though there are, again, no guarantees.

Covering the costs for a procedure like this is a more complicated issue.  Insurance may cover the procedure, or the surgeon may be able to arrange to have it done at significantly reduced prices.

I feel that this should be covered by insurance, since it is a complication of a surgical procedure.  It's too bad that it doesn't matter how I feel.  But you should do everything you can to submit the procedure to the insurance company for approval (BEFORE it's done) and, if necessary, demand an appeal.  Have your plastic surgeon help with photos and letters and, as indicated, contacting the insurance company directly to try to get this done.  Hopefully, you will.

I hope that this helps, and good luck,

Dr. E

Breast reduction and persistent asymmetry: options for correction;.

It is possible that you could undergo liposuction of the larger breast as a minimally invasive technique to lessen the breast discrepancy but I would wait at least 9 months after the initial procedure.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 72 reviews

Assymetry after breast reduction

I think assymetry can be addressed with additional excisions and in my experience, on occasion the insurance companies may cover this procedure, if it is related to an infection and is significant. 

Jeff Scott, MD
Everett Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 10 reviews

Asymmetry after breast reduction

I am always saddened when someone is unhappy with the results of their procedure.  Subtle asymmetries are more the norm than the exception and your surgeon is right that each breast usually is a little different.  If there is as great a difference as you state, you need to speak again to your surgeon.

Breast recuction

Complications such as wound infections althoug not common can happen and lead to assymetry. your insurance company should cover complicatons of approved surgery. you may just need to fight with them a little.

David L. Abramson, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
3.9 out of 5 stars 10 reviews

Assymetry after Breast Reduction Surgery

Assymmetry after Breast Reduction surgey is always possible.  Typically, it is best to wait at least 6-12 months or more to allow for the full healing of the surgery.  Since you had an infection after your surgery, it would be better to give it more time before considering a second operation.  Some assymetry is not uncommon especially if you were asymmetrical before surgery.  You can ask your surgeon for how much weight was removed from each breast, and this may help you in determining where to go next.   The infection may have contributed to the size difference, but it is hard to be sure.  Patience is challenging for most of us, but usulally is rewarded.  Best wishes.

Michael Vincent, MD

Michael Vincent, MD
Rockville Plastic Surgeon

Asymmetry can be helped

Your best chance of symmetry is when your breasts look symmetrical while sitting up at the end of the procedure.  Your surgery is still relatively recent.  It is not unusual to have one side more swollen than the other for some time.  I try to wait on any revisions for 6 months.  It is amazing how many will resolve in that time period.  If it doesn't, liposuction on the larger side is the simplest way to achieve symmetry. This will however require another procedure.  You would have to check with your insurance company to see if that would be covered.

Randy Proffitt, MD
Mobile Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 19 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.