What's an Estimated Price for a Breast Reduction?

I have VERY large breasts (36K). I had Medicaid, but it was recently cancelled. I was planning on having a reduction due to back pains, breathing problems due to breasts, bras that cut into my skin, and the price of those bras. If I were to just save up the money over time, what would be an estimated price of the overall surgery?

Doctor Answers 10

Cost for Breast Reduction Surgery

Thank you for your question. Every practice is different in how they charge.  Fees vary depending on the experience of the surgeon, where the procedure is performed (in an office setting or outpatient surgery center), who administers the anesthesia (MD vs. nurse), and exactly what is performed.  There are so many variables so it really is in your best interest to have a consultation with a board certified plastics surgeon to discuss your options. A range can be $8000-$10,000. I hope this helps.

San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,488 reviews

Breast Reduction - What's an Estimated Price for a Breast Reduction?

Hi Kelz,

Costs vary tremendously - your best bet will be to go see a few surgeons in person, and find out what the prices would be from them.  In New York, the cost is often in the range of $9000 - $15,000.

However, breast reduction may be covered by insurance depending on many factors, including how large your breasts and what your symptoms related to them are.  Your overall height and weight usually figure into this equation too (ie, seeing if the procedure will be covered by insurance).

The most important part, though (however easy it might seem for me to say so) is to make sure that you choose a surgeon you're comfortable with.  You can work things out at that point.

I hope that this helps, and good luck,

Dr. E

Alan M. Engler, MD, FACS
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 125 reviews

Breast reduction coverage

Breast reduction is usually covered by insurance when the surgery is performed as part of a medically mandated procedure to treat neck, back, or shoulder pain or other problems related to the spine, which sounds like your situation. Recently, managed care has adopted stricter standards for coverage, so just make sure these problems are thoroughly documented in writing by your primary care physician and plastic surgeon. They may also have to submit photographs. Even then, you may be required to seek a second opinion from a chiropractor, physical therapist, or orthopedic surgeon.

Large breasts can restrict your lifestyle and cause a variety of medical problems. Even drastic weight loss won't result in more than negligible shrinkage. Breast reduction surgery removes excess breast tissue and reshapes the contour of the breasts so that they are smaller and perkier. I commonly use a minimal incision technique (Le Jour), eliminating the need for large scars while providing a pleasing breast contour and shape that is proportionate to the patient’s body. Your surgeon knows exactly how much tissue he or she is taking out, because it is weighed after removal. The good news is that this procedure can be performed under local anesthesia and twilight sedation instead of general anesthesia, but some doctors still use a general anesthetic. And breast reduction comes with an added bonus: the extracted breast tissue is always sent to the lab and examined by a pathologist for signs of cysts or cancer. Having smaller breasts can take years off your appearance! 

Michelle Copeland, MD, DMD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 10 reviews

What's an Estimated Price for a Breast Reduction?

Self pay fees range from $8000 to $12,000 in south USA. Best to see 3 boarded PS in your area. Or seek plastic residency training program , like at DUKE or UNC. 

Darryl J. Blinski, MD
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 173 reviews

Breast Reduction Cost

I agree that the cost if a breast reduction will vary widely and will likely be less in North Carolina than in New York, Chicago, LA, etc.  If you have no insurance, you might want to check on the possibility of having your surgery performed by residents at either UNC or Duke, both of which are outstanding training programs.

John Whitt, MD (retired)
Louisville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 2 reviews

Breast reduction costs

The cost of breast reduction surgery will vary around the country.  FInd a good surgeon and then see what the fees would be in your community. 

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

Breast reduction insurance coverage.

Sounds like #10 below is your best option.

80% of breast reduction questions on RealSelf are about insurance coverage. Here are some helpful points.

1)  Insurance companies try very hard not to pay for breast reduction, even though they should. Even small breast reductions relieve many symptoms such as back pain and shoulder pain, and even some types of headaches.

2)  Very big reductions (like from an F cup to a C cup) will usually be covered.

3)  Many policies will pay for breast reduction if 500 grams (a little more than a pound) or more are removed from each breast.

4)  Some policies take your height and weight into account. So that if you are tiny, smaller reductions will be covered. Find out the details of your policy.

5)  DON'T get too much of a reduction just to satisfy the insurance company. You will be unhappy with tiny breasts.

6)  Your surgeon needs to request pre-certification IN WRITING, and attach as much evidence as possible.

7)  Evidence includes letters from your internist, orthopedic surgeon, and/or chiropractor stating that breast reduction will relieve your symptoms.

8)  Some companies require that you try "alternative treatments" such as weight loss and physical therapy first.

9)  Don't give up. If the first request is denied, demand an appeal.

10)  If there is no insurance, and you cannot afford to pay a private surgeon, go to the plastic surgery clinic of a teaching hospital. There, residents do the surgery under supervision, and the cost is minimal. In New York City, we train residents and fellows at Lenox Hill Hospital, and they do good work.

George J. Beraka, MD (retired)
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Breast Reduction Cost

Prices for breast reduction do vary significantly from region to region and even from surgeon to surgeon. As previously mentioned, your best bet is to seek various consultations to get a ballpark figure. Also, keep in mind that many surgeon's offices may be able to give you financing information (either through the office or through a third party credit company) as well. The lowest cost (and longest waiting time) solution would be to seek insurance whenever you can- and make sure the policy doesn't specifically exclude breast reduction.

Derek Lou, MD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

Breast Reduction

Prices vary among georgaphical regions and also depend on severity

 and this website as well give you a good estimate -find a board certified plastic surgeon and then decide -just remember ther's more to this than price

Edward J. Bednar, MD
Charlotte Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 125 reviews

Cost of Breast Reduction

Prices vary tremendously from patient to patient and region to region.  The cost also depends on the complexity of the surgery and length of the operation.  I could give you a range but you could probably get that from this website as well.  The best advise I can give you is to seek a consultation with several plastic surgeons.  I am sure they would be happy to give you exact costs for the surgery.

Albert Dabbah, MD
Boca Raton Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 11 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.