Is the Treadmill 3 Weeks After Breast Reduction too Soon?

I am a very active 64 year old (runner, golfer, downhill skier, gym enthusiast). I have been walking the golf course with my husband and riding the recumbant bike at the gym since about 1 week after surgery. I would like to start using the treadmill but am concerned that I was told it is too jarring.

Doctor Answers 9

Running after breast reduction

Thank you for your question. You definitely want to follow your own surgeon's post-op activity instructions. This is a general guide I give to my patients:
1) No heavy lifting or strenuous activity for 6 weeks.
2) Resume walking at a leisurely pace right after surgery (e.g. 2 mph)
3) At 2 weeks, you can walk 2 miles at 2mph
4) At 3 weeks, you can walk 3 miles at 3mph
5) At 4 weeks, you can walk 4 miles at 4mph
6) At 5 weeks, you can jog 5 miles at 5mph
7) At 6 weeks, you can resume all activities, but listen to your body and use discomfort or tightness as a guide so you don't over do it.

Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 38 reviews

Is the Treadmill 3 Weeks After Breast Reduction too Soon?

No matter what we as expert posters say, you NEED to verify this with your chosen operative surgeon. In my practice 3 weeks sounds about right. 

Darryl J. Blinski, MD
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 174 reviews

Breast Reduction and Exercise

I tell my patients that they can resume normal activities after bruising and tenderness are gone. Strenuous exercise should be avoided for 3 to 4 weeks. But follow your surgeons advice, each patient can be different.

Miguel Delgado, MD
San Francisco Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 76 reviews

Treadmill 3 weeks after breast reduction surgery

Please consult your surgeon about your instructions for post operative activity.  If you have already been doing stationary bike and walking on the golf course, you could probably WALK on the treadmill.  I would not recommend jogging or running this early after breast reduction surgery.  At any rate, a quick call to your surgeon's office should clarify his instructions.

Marialyn Sardo, MD
La Jolla Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 6 reviews

Discuss post breast reduction exercise regimen with your doctor

You need to contact your surgeon and find out what his/her exercise restrictions and protocol are for the immediate postoperative period for a breast reduction ... and then follow those recommendations.

For my breast reduction patients, they are allowed to get on a bicycle at 3 - 4 weeks and walking on a treadmill at 3 weeks and possibly starting to run at 4 - 6 weeks. There are several reasons for the restrictions with the ultimate purpose to minimize any complications and allow you to heal with the best scars possible.

Steven Turkeltaub, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Exercise after surgery

Each surgeon is different about what they will a allow for post-operative acitvities. I prefer to have patients wait about 4 weeks to start aerobic acitivities and about 6-8 weeks for heavy lifting.

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

Exercising after Breast Reduction Surgery

Thank you for your question. Congratulations on having had  the breast reduction procedure.  is one of the most patient pleasing operations we do.

I would agree that you should first speak with your surgeon to see what he/she recommends for post operative exercising.  I think it would be fine to walk (walk briskly) on the treadmill but probably would not want you running on it quite yet.  Make sure you are wearing a supportive bra and follow the instructions of your surgeon.

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,503 reviews

Exercise after breast reduction

First, speak to your plastic surgeon about when you can return to a full exercise regimen.  I generally don't have a problem with walking on the treadmill three weeks postoperatively but would not encourage running for a few more weeks and then while wearing a sports bra.

Robert L. Kraft, MD, FACS
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 42 reviews

Exercise after breast reduction

Please ask your doctor what they want you to do with htis question.  I would certainly hope my patients would call me rather than going on line :)

Richard P. Rand, MD, FACS
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 67 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.