Breast Surgery to Correct Congenital Breast Asymmetry?

I was born where one breast developed and the other never grew. I have had multiple surgeries since age 17 and I am now 45. One breast sits up high and the other is larger. One nipple is big and the other is small.

When I lay down, one sits up and the other goes flat. I need to correct this so who should I go to and what should I have done? I cannot wear a bathing suit because one sits up and the other is soft. Please help me.

Doctor Answers 6

Correction of Your Breast Assymmetry Is Possible

Correction of Breast asymmetry is one of the most difficult and gratifying breast surgeries I perform. I have a very long discussion during the consultation to give the patient the "ground rules" for attempting to correct this problem.

1. While dramatic improvement is possible, complete correction of the asymmetry is extremely unlikely

2. There will be several surgeries over a long period (usually about 2 years). Usually only the first one is a big procedure involving breast augmentation on the small side and breast reduction/lift on the larger side. The other procedures are usually touch ups and adjustments and do not involve much pain or recovery time. Some of my best results have been the most difficult and time consuming to achieve.

3. We must work together on this very difficult problem. Open communication about expectations and concerns is very important. Remember that your surgeon wants your breast to be more symmetric as much as you do.

4. There will be scars. Both breast will usually have some scarring which is visible. I show patients what these will look like before the surgery with example photographs

5. Symmetry in clothing is the primary goal. Most patients want to look symmetric in a bathing suit, T-shirt or other tight fitting clothing. You will always see more differences in the nude.

The fact that you have had several surgeries makes achieving better symmetry harder, but not impossible. Ask your potential surgeon if they have experience correcting breast asymmetry and if , frankly, they enjoy doing it. Some surgeons just don't want to take on this type of long term problem. You want to find a surgeon who is willing to spend time with you and likes taking on these challenges.

Sarasota Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

Breast Asymmetry

I am sorry to hear that, this is a difficult problem and pretty common to need multiple surgeries over one's lifetime to address the issues.

At this point you need to seek the advice of a board certified plastic surgeon than deals with breast asymmetries and is comfortable dealing with these problems.

Farbod Esmailian, MD
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 77 reviews

Breast asymmetry

 Signficant breast asymmetry can be very difficult to correct.  Sometimes autologous breast tissue reconstruction needs to be performed. But without examining you, it would be difficult to suggest a procedure to you.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Correcting breast asymmetry

You should see a plastic surgeon, and in the Florida area Dr. Armando Soto is very good. You will most likely need a combination of impants and a lift to achieve better symmetry. Sometimes, muscle from the back is needed to fill out certain areas of the breast or a tissue expander may be used to stretch out the skin and muslce to make room for an implant. Good luck!

Breast reconstruction with asymmetry

It is the rare woman who has symmetric breasts and some of course are more asymmetric than others. If you have had an implant placed in one breast and not the other, it is difficult to really achieve symmetry. You would need to be seen and examined but there should be something that can be done to provide you more volume and shape symmetry. As one of my office staff commonly tells patients with pre-existing asymmetry, your breast are sisters, not twins, and they still will be after surgery. I encourage you to have a consultation with a board-certified plastic surgeon to review your reconstructive options. I hope this has helped.

Dr Edwards

Michael C. Edwards, MD, FACS
Las Vegas Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 35 reviews

Congenital breast asymmetry and long term management

Unfortunately, this is a difficult problem that often requires multiple surgeries throughout your lifetime due to the ongoing changes in the naturally larger breast. To limit the effects of this, I have often found that it is better to reduce the larger breast than attempt to match its size with the smaller breast. This typically requires a lift and reduction. In any case, discuss your goals with a board certified plastic surgeon and find the right procedure for you.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 81 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.