Do I have a fractured sternum and is it a possibility I was resucitated during surgery? (photo)

I had a breast reduction today and the procedure took 5.5 hrs.Ive noticed bruises either side that have rib marks.My sternum is incredibly painful and swollen even to the slightest touch. Feeling the bone it feels raised in one area. Normally I can feel the join to where the sternum ends but I can't feel it anymore. When I stand up the pain is the worst unless I hold my breasts up. Is there a possibility I've got a broken sternum?

Doctor Answers 4

Post-Surgical pain following a Breast Reduction

Thank you for your question. There will be a thorough written record (whether dictated, paper, or electronic) of everything that occurred during your Breast Reduction surgical procedure. Please consult with your board-certified plastic surgeon's office for an explanation of any occurrence or outcome related to your procedure or experience. 

Sternal pain after breast reduction

It's pretty hard to fracture the sternum during a breast reduction, since the sternum and ribs are generally not even exposed during that operation. It would be extremely unusual for you to have major trauma such as chest compressions for resuscitation without being told that it happened, and without hospitalization.

Malik Kutty, MD
Sugar Land Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 39 reviews

Pain after Breast reduction

You should be asking your surgeon these questions, but this is extremely unlikely. 

Regards, Dr Steve Merten, Sydney, Australia

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Do I have a fractured sternum and is it a possibility I was resucitated during breast reduction surgery?

Congratulations on having undergone the breast reduction procedure.   The findings you report in your question can all  explained by the fact that you have breast reduction surgery recently. Although your plastic surgeon will be your best resource for accurate information, it would be extremely unlikely that you sustained a fractured sternum or required intraoperative resuscitation. If this had been the case, it is very likely that you would be in an intensive care unit now, not standing and capable of taking a photograph and submitting this post.


 Again, best to communicate your concerns/questions directly with your plastic surgeon.  Best wishes for an outcome that you will be pleased with long-term.

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.