How Long Will Normal Activities Cause Pain After a Breast Reduction?

Will there be any loss of sensitivity around the breast after a reduction? Could this last for months?

Doctor Answers 5

Breast Reduction: normal activity after surgery

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Breast Reduction: normal activity after surgery
The incisions are covered with light dressings, and you will be place in a bra, which you should bring to the surgery center with you. Our staff at the Pacific Center for Plastic Surgery will help you select the proper size. The bra holds the breasts symmetrically during the initial healing. The initial discomfort subsides daily and can be controlled with oral medication.

Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 116 reviews

Breast Reduction Recovery?

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Thank you for the question.

Breast reduction surgery is one of the most patient pleasing operations would perform. Most patients experience some discomfort for the first one to two weeks;  this is a period of time I suggest patients take off from work.  Most patients are able to return to the majority of their activities of daily living within that timeframe. Heavy lifting usually requires 4 to 6 weeks.

Loss of sensation is a risk with any breast surgery;  the majority of patients however retain nipple/areola sensation.

I hope this helps.

Breast sensation and symptoms after surgery

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Predicting the extent, intensity and duration of a particular person's discomfort following a breast reduction (or any other surgical procedure) is impossible due to such variability among individuals. I can say that a vast majority of my patients return to a sedentary job within 5 - 7 days. Usually by 4 weeks they can resume most activities with little discomfort. Some women may have some discomfort at times or with certain activities for a few months.

With regard to breast sensation, there will be numbness of the skin which will decrease over a few months. It may take a year or more for the maximal amount to return. There may be areas of permanent decreased or relative loss of sensation. This will depend on multiple factors including what they started with.

Steven Turkeltaub, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 33 reviews

Numbness after a breast reduction

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Some patients report numbness or strange senssations (dysesthesia) after a breast reduction. This often gets better with time.  By about a year the majority of patients have normal sensation.

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

Activities After Breast Reduction

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Most patients are able to resume normal activities (which don't require lifting, straining, etc.) a couple of weeks following a breast reduction.  Patients who have desk jobs can usually return to work at this point and resume driving at around 10 days post-op.  Patients whose jobs require heavy lifting may need to take 6-8 weeks off.  There is always a small chance of permanent loss of nipple sensation with a reduction.

John Whitt, MD (retired)
Louisville Plastic Surgeon

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.