Chest Tightness and Pain 2 Weeks Post-op

Even wearing a top makes my skin feel uncomfortable. I also have shooting pin like pains at times and my breasts are still very swollen. I have been to see the doctor and they have just put me on an anti-biotic. Are these symptoms normal? I'm just wondering how long it will take for me to get back to feeling like myself? I am going back to work next week and if I still feel this bad I don't know how I am going to do it.

Doctor Answers 7

Breast Reduction - Healing, Discomfort, Redness at the Incision

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Hi East Peoria,

I'm assuming you don't have implants in there, too - if you do you need to contact your PS right away to be assessed and to make sure you don't have a more serious and significant infection.

If you do not - in other words, if you had a breast lift or a breast reduction - then your healing appears to be generally within a normal range for two weeks post-op.  It is not uncommon to have some redness, swelling, distortion - and all of the feelings you're having.  Of course, you have to stay in touch with your own PS to make sure that you are, in fact, healing adequately.  But it does appear that way from the photos.

I'm not sure if you'll be totally okay to go to work in another week.  You may be, or you may not be.  But I don't think it will necessarily be dangerous to go back to work (it depends what kind of work you do - do you lift people, move heavy objects, etc).  It can take a few more weeks (easily) and sometimes months for you to feel completely yourself.

So - stay on the antibiotics, stay in touch with your PS, and let the healing proceed on its own.

I hope that this helps, and good luck,

Dr. E

Pain After Breast Reduction.

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

   Breast Reduction is my favorite procedure. It is a wonderful operation. At 2 weeks there can be pain and discomfort.  Continue close contact with your doctor.  Your pictures are hard to see.  Need better photos. If a temperature occures see your doctor immediatly.  You will be fine but must be seen daily for awhile until the entire problem is diagnosed and cured.  This is possible.  It is part of the surgeons job.  Hang in there.  My Best.

Breast Reduction Recovery?

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Thank you for the question.

2 weeks postop is not uncommon to be experiencing some continued discomfort. Make sure you have not weaned off the pain medication too soon and consider the use of anti-inflammatories as needed.

The use of antibiotics to treat the area of redness is appropriate as is continued close follow-up with your plastic surgeon.

If your symptoms continue you may need an additional week off work. Best wishes.

Chest discomfort

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Chest discomfort two weeks after surgery is very common. AS for the specific reason for your discomfort, there arer alot of details missing. What type of breast/chest surgery did you have?  What type of pain do you have, where is it located, etc..  You shuold speak with your doctor.

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

Chest Tightness and Pain 2 Weeks Post-op

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

You post a photo, but you didnt state what procedure you had. Do you have implants? Did you have a breast reduction or a breast lift?  If you are as uncomfortable as you state and you do not have implants, I would recommend that you call your surgeon and ask to be evaluated again; you may benefit from blood work and possibly an ultrasound to see if there if fluid or infection going on.

Amy T. Bandy, DO, FACS
Newport Beach Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 109 reviews

Recovery after breast reduction

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

We most often use a vertical or short scar breast reduction pattern, and use the 'T' incision such as your for only the largest reductions. The T pattern does take longer to heal and though most patients will return to work after just one week, some will be uncomfortable longer and need more time off. A good soft compression bra may help as well as anti inflammatory medication such as Advil.

Best of luck,


Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 44 reviews

Pain after breast surgery

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

From the photos, it appears that you had a breast reduction / lift with or without implants.  Chest discomfort after surgery is not uncommon, but if you are having persistent pain, then you need to contact your doctor.  Also, you appear to have minor incision healing issues, so an evaluation by your surgeon may be in order to get you on a wound healing regimen to help the incisions heal better. 


Good Luck.

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.