Open wound 4 weeks after breast reduction. (photo)

I had a black scab-like thing on my left breast which fell off about 5 days ago. I'm now left with this open wound. Is this normal? How do I treat it? How long will it take to heal?

Doctor Answers 4

Open wound 4 weeks after breast reduction.

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I'm sorry to hear about the complication you are experiencing. You should be aware however that wound healing problems can occur after breast reduction surgery;  with local wound care,  these wounds generally go on to heal over the course of a few weeks. Frequent follow with your plastic surgeon will be key; sometimes removal of exposed sutures and/or unhealthy tissue helps expedite the healing process. Most patients heal within a few weeks and end up very pleased with the outcome of the procedure performed. Best wishes.

T-closure issue

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The "T" area is common are for wound healing issues to develop. Local wound care is often all that is needed. Best to follow your surgeon's instructions.

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

Wound issue after breast reduction

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Sorry to hear about your problem. Wound healing problems along the vertical incision line, particularly near the bottom, are not uncommon. They nearly always end up healing just fine on their own with no additional surgery required. The scars end up lightening and becoming very difficult to tell it ever had problems. I would ask your specific surgeon for instructions, but generally we recommend keeping it clean (gentle soap and water in a shower), light application of antibiotic ointment, gauze, and a support bra that does not rub on that site. Best wishes.

Paul J. Leahy, MD
Leawood Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

Wound after breast reduction

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Although unpleasant, it is not uncommon for a wound to develop under the breast following reduction surgery.  This is because under the breast is where the most tension is along the incision, as well as the most compromised blood flow to the skin.  Taken together, these factors cause superficial skin breakdown, especially at the point where the vertical and horizontal incisions meet.  It's best not to be alarmed by this but rather let your surgeon know, and typically it can be treated with simple wound care, usually requiring only some ointment and gauze.  A red or yellow color of the base of the wound is expected, with associated oozing, but make sure to follow up with your surgeon to check that no infection is present.  Depending upon the size of the wound that develops, it may take many weeks to heal so it's important to be patient, and absolutely do not smoke as this will cause the wound to take even more time to heal.  Stay positive, and despite the frustration, it will be worth the ultimate result.Best of luck,Keith M. Blechman, MDNew York, NY

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