I am a 38 F or DDD or DD (I have gotten measured and nothing seems to fit). How small could I be after a reduction? 18F 5'9" 180
Doctor Answers 5
The smallest you could ultimatly be will be determined by how much is removed, which I would estimate at a C-Cup. I recommend an in-office examination as well as a detailed discussion with a board-certified Plastic Surgeon certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery.
Harvard Educated, Beverly Hills & Miami Beach Trained, Double-Board Certified Plastic Surgeon
How Small Should I be after Breast Reduction
This is because several measurements—not to mention breast characteristics such as density—are needed to determine how much and where to remove breast tissue to meet your goals. Without knowing your existing breast shape, dimensions, and the density of your breast tissue, it would be difficult to make this determination. For example, the same volume of breast tissue will weigh different amounts (measured in ounces or grams) in different people depending on its density. The existing base width of your breast and what you will ultimately want to look like will determine, in many cases, the maximal volume and weight that will need to be removed for the best result.
To illustrate: removing 300 grams of breast tissue may make a significant difference in cup sizes (e.g. 2–3 cup sizes) with a narrow base width breast, but much less of a difference (e.g. Perhaps 0.5–1 cup size less) if you have a wide chest wall and wide breast “foot print”. Your friend may have a great result from removing 500 grams of breast tissue to make her go from a “DDD” cup to a “C” cup size, but this does not mean that you will have the same result with the same weight of breast tissue removed.
To make matters even more complicated, different bra manufacturers have different cup size labels for the same breast size. Computer software morphing programs that automatically determine what you may look like after a breast reduction can be helpful in some but not all cases (e.g. doesn’t work well in my experience with sagging or asymmetric breasts). Using “want to be” photos however are useful if simply provided to your surgeon in advance for preoperative discussion.
Personally, I have found it most helpful for patients to bring in photos from my or other plastic surgeons’ websites to illustrate what they would like to look like. This gives me detailed standardized views and information both qualitative (shape, perkiness) and quantitative (size) and allows me to discuss with my patients how I can best achieve their objectives as well as realistic expectations. For example, though I always tell my patients that I cannot make them exactly the same as a photo because everyone has different anatomical constraints, your “ideal” breast photos are brought to the operating room for reference during surgery so that I have the advantage of “seeing through my patient’s eyes” to best achieve their wishes. Even if the photo does not match their height or weight, I and most plastic surgeons are very good at translating the proportionality of the photo to your features and will try our best to match your goals.
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How small could I be after a breast reduction?
It is possible to reduce the breasts size very significantly. The concern with the amount of tissue removed is related to blood flow to the remaining tissue; if too much tissue is removed in one operation the blood flow to the remaining tissue (including nipple/areola) may be compromised. Part of the tissue that is left in place is called the “pedicle"; this segment of tissue is responsible for delivering the blood supply to the nipple/areola tissue. If the pedicle is made too small (in the effort to reduce the breasts as much as possible) then patient will likely have problems with tissue survival.
On occasion, patients may require more than a single stage procedure to achieve a very small (flat chest) outcome.
My best suggestion: seek consultation with board-certified plastic surgeons who can demonstrate significant experience achieving the types of outcomes you will be pleased with. This careful selection of plastic surgeon will be the most important decision you make.
Before undergoing the breast reduction procedure it will be very important to communicate your size goals with your surgeon. Most patients wish to achieve a enough of a reduction to help with their symptoms while remaining proportionate with the remainder of their torso. I suggest that you do not communicate your goals in terms of achieving a specific cup size. For example, a “full B or small C cup” may mean different things to different people and therefore may be a source of miscommunication. In my practice, I ask patients to communicate their goals with the help of goal photographs.
I hope this, and the attached link/video, helps. Best wishes.