How Long After Breast Reduction Surgery Are Breasts Swollen?

I had a breast reduction two weeks ago. I started at a 32F, and my doctor and I agreed that "around" a small C-cup would be better for my petite, athletic frame. I have had an excellent recovery so far; however, my breasts are still big for my size. I can even fit into a DD-cup bra. I'm a bit nervous that I will have gone through a major surgery and still have over-sized breasts. Even though my breast size hasn't decreased much since the day after surgery, could they are still swollen? If not, can this be corrected without undergoing extensive surgery again?

Doctor Answers 23

Post Breast Reduction Healing

Some discomfort, swelling and discoloration of the #breasts are to be expected for several weeks. The scars at the incision lines typically become reddish and a few weeks after surgery are raised and firm. After a number of months they become pale and soft. After 8-12 months, the scars are relatively inconspicuous. The #nipples and some areas of the skin may be numb or sensitive after surgery. Sensation may return within a few weeks or months, but may be diminished or overly sensitive.

If you have severe redness, swelling, drainage or odor, it is important to call the office and speak with the doctor or medical staff. You may need to be seen in the office and evaluated. If the wound becomes separated or you develop a small opening, this again should be evaluated so that appropriate steps can be taken as soon as possible.

Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 77 reviews

Swelling after Breast Reduction

Post-operative swelling can take 6-12 months to completely subside.  Since you are still very early in the healing process, I would advise you to hold off on assessing your results and breast size for quite a while until you are much further along in your recovery process.  Best of luck!

Post op swelling after breast reduction

Two weeks is very early after a breast reduction--you will certainly still have a lot of the expected and normal postoperative edema.  I typically tell patients that postoperative swelling resolves slowly; maybe 80% is resolved within 6-8 weeks, but the rest may take up to 6-8 months to resolve.  Be patient!

Jeffrey D. Wagner, MD
Indianapolis Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 10 reviews

Two Weeks is Early, 12 Months Minimum.

3 Dimensional studies of post operative patients show that it takes a whole year for swelling to subside. 

Stay In communication with your plastic surgeon.  Voice your concerns.  Give it time.  If you and your plastic surgeon agree that an adjustment is needed, a simple revision is possible.  

Many size issues resolve with patience.  Patience is often rewarded with better than expected outcomes. But never fear, help is available if needed. 

Swollen Breasts After Reduction Surgery

Two weeks is still very early in the recovery process. The swelling that you are experiencing is common and completely normal. It could take 6-12 months to see the final results.

Breast Reduction and Post operative Swelling

Bruising and swelling following breast reduction surgery can take weeks to months before achieving a more stable final result. Most of my patients will experience significant swelling for at least two weeks following breast reduction surgery. The breasts  after reduction surgery typically begin to settle around one month and by three months post operation the breasts seem to have settled into a more consistent position and size. 

Jason S. Cooper, MD
Jupiter Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 27 reviews

Swelling after breast reduction surgery


It is common to have swelling after breast reduction surgery. Depending on the technique used for the procedure, the swelling may persist for up to 6 to 8 months. At that time, you should see your final result. If you feel that the press are still too large it may not be a question of swelling but of excess or remaining tissue. Consult with your plastic surgeon as they may recommend a small revision to your breast reduction so that you may reach your goal cup size.

Pat Pazmino, MD
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 76 reviews

Breast reduction swelling

Swelling after breast surgery is very common. This will take weeks sometimes months for all the swelling to disappear. This is all part of the healing process.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 23 reviews

Breast will be swollen after augmentation for a few months, at least


Breast reduction results particularly those of large reductions usually take several months to show themselves. Initially things look "tight high and swollen." On the reduction target, did your surgeon really say he could take you from an F to a small C cup? You might want to talk with him about this again.

John P. Di Saia, MD
Orange Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

Way too early to tell after breast augmentation


You should be communicating frequently with your plastic surgeon. He or she will be able to estimate for you how much swelling remains in your breasts, but after two weeks, you're certain to have quite a bit.

As Dr. Placik mentioned above, this swelling can last months.

Give it some time! The patient satisfaction rate after breast reduction is among the highest of any plastic surgery patient.

Brian K. Brzowski, MD
Ogden Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 62 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.