Hello RS Community
I have found this site so...
Hello RS Community
I have found this site so helpful that I too am going to try to help others with what I am about to undertake. Like many here, my breasts have been a source of anxiety and pain for too many years and I am finally doing something that I wish I could of done earlier.
I will update closer to the day of my procedure as a way of calming my anxiety and hopefully sharing the experience to help others. I also need to vent as I am not telling anyone else apart from my partner and one very close friend. My partner is already I think quite tired of talking about it even though he tries his best to be supportive :)
My main anxiety is of course any complications although I trust my surgeon however this also leads to anxiety about size as he is quite conservative. The technique to be used is also the newer "vertical scar" (rather than the anchor pattern) and a small scar in the inframammary fold as I have quite a bit of skin to remove.
I would love to have a B cup result. Today I bought this delightful B soft cup Stella McCartney bra - 36B and I am obviously spilling out of it(profile pic) but I really hope to be wearing it as a comfortable bra in the future.
Hope to be able to chat to fellow Australians as well so if anyone is out there- feel free to message me :)
I went to see my surgeon again and was kind of reassured that I would be more of a C than a B. I am long rather than big but there is also a lot of glandular tissue to be removed. I am not that keen on a free nipple graft or possibility of losing sensation in my nipples so I am happy with a C - not too sure if I will feel terribly upset if I end up bigger though. Still I keep thinking it will be miles away from where I am now and hopefully that will keep me happy with the results. Letting go of consideration of getting an opinion on an anchor pattern technique purely because of the scarring and more "invasiveness" of the technique. I (think) I have made up my mind. Trust is definitely a thing that comes up in the experience. Feeling comfortable and trusting the surgeon is definitely a major plus for me.
My current size is 14DD but in many of my bras I spill out a little so I think sometimes I am a 14E of course depending on the bra I also put on and lose weight too frequently so it is hard to say.
Which also leads me to questioning why I have never really kept on top of my weight apart from fact that it has always been difficult to maintain in any case ( due to bad diet when I was younger with parents that had no idea about nutrition and thought fat wasn't a bad thing). But what I have remembered is that any time I did embark on a healthy exercise and good eating plan I started being very unhappy about the effect it had on my breasts. As I have stretch marks on the upper pole and the skin here quite thin it never retracts when I lose weight and it is depressing looking at the saggy skin when I lean forward. Now that I wont have to worry about that effect soon enough so my fitness/weightloss has been my prime aim. I no longer have to hide my boobs by making the rest of my body bigger or to be worried of having saggy breasts at my goal weight. For the first time since the age of 15 I hope to finally like the look of my breasts. At 39 it's a long time to wait to be able to look in the mirror and not be instantly depressed by having boobs that don't appear to belong to my body not to mention the neck shoulder back pain that only gets worse with every year.
I am a mixture of anxiety and elation at the moment. Cleaning the house today was a good way to alleviate some of the nerves and satisfy my OCD about germs :) Mentally packed my overnight bag and looking forward to having a relaxing day tomorrow before the day of surgery. A movie and some lunch followed by a healthy dinner is the plan. There are some things I have been concerned about however and affirms to me how I am sometimes too relaxed about things. I have only now tried to google some information about pre op (aside from what I was given from my PS). Here I have found that foods containing salicylates, including almonds and berries are to be limited!!!! That's pretty much my snack food these days! Also I have has a few glasses of red wine here and there, even two on Friday night and here it tells me alcohol should be avoided weeks prior to surgery!!! I am interested if anyone had the same advice??? My PS instructions were not so detailed. Pretty much just the ceasing any non prescription drugs/ vitamins. No mention of any interactions with food or alcohol. This is the link which I encourage every one to check out at least two weeks prior to surgery : http://www.drjoannelopes.com/preparing.php
29 Oct 2013
Day of treatment
I woke up in little pain and have such lovely nurses and all - very happy - also got to eat an amazing tasting sandwhich drink tea and raspberry jelly for pudding - looking forward to sleep and getting up and about soon (it's nearly 9pm here in oz) my thought are with all the ladies going to surgery today or in theatre now - best wishes to all x
29 Oct 2013
Day of treatment
So I am now at home after my night in hospital. I had no drains (thank gosh) and was given anti coagulants and the leg massagers to prevent DVT as I have had a DVT in my leg and lungs a few years ago. The incisions are "lollipop technique" so mainly around the nipple and vertically down my breast. I forgot to ask the surgeon if he did make the L incision in the fold but I will find out soon enough. I am smaller than I expected which is quite funny as I just got used to thinking that it wouldn't be the end of the world if I ended up a large C and was hoping to not be a D. I am quite small framed and athletic so I would still feel top heavy if I was a D. I am delighted. My torso looks thinner and all the hard work and the gym is being realised now with the dreaded hanging sagging boobs gone! Quite happy. The thought of implants stuck me as I looked at my breasts but that would be years down the track I think. For now I will enjoy my new found freedom from pain and try to get my rounded shoulders where they belong too!
Today I tried on the 36B bra that I took to my surgeon for a sizing guide(and the one in my profile picture). As I was over bulging out of bras I said I would be happy if I wasn't spilling out of it at all after the surgery and fit it neatly. I had however resigned to thinking it may be impossible to reduce me to a B so I have been delighted today to see it fit like a glove. Judging from the limitations my surgeon had- my age(39) and the damage I have from sun bathing and yo yo dieting when I was younger I think he achieved top marks! I also know the limitations of breast surgery in general so I do not feel sad that I do not have the results I was hoping for (more upper pole fullness roundness etc) even after surgery. What I care about is how I feel in my clothes- how the rest of my body feels so completely feminine (not matronly) and proportioned. I measured myself today and for once in my life my breast size is once centimetre less than my hips! I feel light as a feather and know that if I lose a few more kgms around my mid section I shall be most pleased. I am lucky to have mainly glandular tissue in my breasts and have already lost quite a bit of weight off them recently before the surgery so I hope I don't lose too much off with further weight loss. All the motivation for achieving any weightloss has been a direct result of knowing I was getting a breast reduction. I was around 70 kgms earlier this year and now I am 64kgms(thanks also to 630gms removed from my breasts :). Unlike in the past I also have not resorted to limiting my intake of healthy foods like nuts meats and dairy. I have just cut out the sugar. Easy and I highly recommend that others interested in weightloss take up "clean eating" and realise it is not doom and gloom at all. You can have delicious food and treats that taste better than your run of the mill chocolate, cakes and deserts made with cups of sugar and other simple carbs.
Recovery and technique
Just to add, my recovery has been pretty good apart from not sleeping the best. Lying on my side is getting better now though as this morning I managed a few hours like that and not totally propped up. The swelling and bruising is still there but not a problem and I have not had any painkillers since yesterday morning. I have taken a few Bromelain capsules but yet to get some Arnica which I don't think I need really. I have kept very limited salt intake both before and after surgery which I think helps a lot. The fat pockets also are starting to smooth out. The perks of this vertical reduction technique are just fantastic and I am so glad I didn't pursue the anchor even if I felt I would get a better shape out of it. I am too impatient for longer recoveries; I just want to get back into my routine life as soon as possible. I would highly recommend those that have a choice consider this deeply and I was very dismissive of this technique at first because of the limitations reported. To tell you the truth I am not sure now; upon further reading and advise from three surgeons I know that the long term results are better and the "coning" of the tissue provides more projection. Now all I am doing is hoping that with enough rest and relation and intermittent light activities I will continue to have a good recovery. I am a little scared with loss of feeling because of the size but thinking positive is the only way to go isn't it :)
Patience is a virtue
Today marks one week since my surgery. I am feeling quite good and sleeping better than the first few days, although at times it is hard to move to my sides and I worry still about blood clotting from being inactive (compared to my pre op of going to gym almost daily etc). I am moving about doing normal things like washing dishes and hanging out clothes (not too high) - showering and washing my hair and no problem with going to the toilet.
I am eating well - meat and veg most days and taking vitamin C, zinc and a Bromelaine capsule daily. I am also drinking a protein shake most days to help with healing- the one I have is really well balanced with vitamins and amino acids crucial for body repair. Rest is also quite a feature :) Yesterday I had a nap during the day after only sitting at my computer for a few hours- I don't know how women go to work after only a week. I am glad to be able to have time to rest as much as I like.
The healing process is definitely a "process" :) Each day there is something different, whether it is more/less swelling or bruising or nipple sensation and those shooting "zingers". If you haven't had zingers you will definitely know when they occur. I am a little concerned about my left nipple/breast. There is no sensation in it yet my right one is fully there :) The breast looks a bit bigger (although this was the case pre op) and there is extra bruising, swelling and fat pockets as well. Hoping all settle with time.
I am also expecting my period this week which may explain the sense of swelling more now and almost feeling "bigger" to which I am rather happy about. Sometimes I feel too small but I know once I lose the final kgms and tone up my tummy and arms more I will be very happy with the size. The thing with me is that my ribcage is quite large so in clothes I actually look like a C- my chest bone pushes them forward (and apart) and being that I want to work on my posture to avoid the back problems I have had, being small enough to do this was my priority.
I can sit here all day thinking about how nice it would be to have upper pole fullness or less space between my boobs but I am nearly 40 not 20 so I am quite pleased overall. I love their current no fold form but know that they will drop a little with time. I am most thankful to my surgeon as he listened to my concerns about being small enough - not wanting to project too much so that I am balanced in my body and I am so glad to say I am almost bottom heavy now =D He definitely did a great job being he had a challenging pair of saggy bags to deal with accompanied by my chest wall structure that does nothing to help form a pair of nice breasts. My follow up is tomorrow so I will be able to get more of an idea of how my healing is going and how soon I can start doing some light walking and other exercise.
One week follow up and stretch marks convo
Today I went to have my follow up appointment with my surgeon. He had to aspirate? (i've been reading too much about procedures I'm pretty sure that's right haha) about quarter of a cup of fluid from my left breast which was an instant relief . He also confirmed that is it more bruised and more swollen and than the right and this should fix itself with time. Nipple sensation in left will come back - I HOPE :)
He noticed my skin was irritated probably from the fibres in the post op bra I am wearing- or perhaps as it was straight out of the packet! I like pre washing most things before wear- I guess relying on a patient to bring in the bra on the day of surgery for afterwear is not a good idea lol. So he instructed that I wear a singlet or tshirt under my bra- I might start a new fashion trend :P . As I was going out for lunch after the appointment he said I could go bra less with just my t-shirt! Oh my! I have never been out to the shops without a bra on or at least a built in bra in a singlet top. Well not since I was 12 :) It felt sooooo good and liberating and exciting and wonderful and all the things that I knew I would feel after having this operation. I don't think bra less will be my thing all the time but I know that if a top or dress requires no bra is worn I don't have to tape my boobs up. What a relief!
LetitB (scheduled for Dec 4) and I have chatted re stretch marks. Mine have always been a source of anxiety and hatred right from the time they came out, all thick and purple and I had no idea what they were to the the time before surgery when I had lost some weight and my skin just could to take another weight loss change. Like so many here they have been this little secret of mine that I was lucky enough to hide well as the more prominent ones are mostly on the upper sides of my breasts. Plunging tops were the go rather than strapless tops and \ wearing a good bra that pushed up my boobs so they filled up and looked only very very faint. The reduction has made them almost disappear completely however there is nothing that can remove them completely unless they are cut out- i.e. not happening as this is more likely on top of breast mound. Some smaller ladies may be lucky with a Benelli lift not sure. Anyways the outcome is good I think if you go smaller or if you have super elastic skin and upper pole fullness (of which I've never had in my breasts).
My left breast possibly had deeper ones to start with being that this one had always been bigger so I have taken some photos to show that they are still there even going down to a B cup. The right one not so much.The thing is thay only really show (and only a little) if I lean forward and in doing so drop my shoulders even further. (see pics)
Holding the shoulder back(and also working on getting my back muscles strong ) is something that I am concentrating on doing to help my posture and the issues I have had with my shoulders/neck/entire thoracic region. When I had my heavy breasts there is no way I felt comfortable working out at a gym doing those exercises - even at an all female gym! Not to mention the weight on top made it even less of a desirable activity. I can't wait to go and try this at the gym and also pushups on my toes. I could only get to about ten before my op so I hope it wont take my long to surpass that. So excited and relieved. I shall go on my first walk tonight-maybe half an hour to start- doc said it's A ok! YAY
Walking only I meant- Push ups, back work and proper high intensity cardio not for while longer ;)
A few things
I had a knee jerk reaction the other day and removed my photos. I wish I could block people on this site but alas that function is yet to be built into the site. I will update however that I am feeling good. I asked the hard questions about what an assistant surgeon does and does not. It turns out my fears were invalid and goes to show that one should not believe everything they hear/read/someone tells them. Perception is easily swayed by the mind. My breasts now look to me as breasts that have had recent resizing and of course are not perfect. The left one is bigger, more bruised and more swollen and since I have not had the experience of knowing how this will change I will give my surgeon the respect he deserves and wait for all to settle. As I was also slightly asymmetric before this is only a common result when they are smaller it become more obvious. I was aware of this and now I know it has nothing to do with another surgeon performing the reduction of the left breast (or right) simultaneously. The only thing the assistant surgeon is allowed to do is basically peel off the skin after the incisions are made and to do the suturing of which they are better at doing apparent with more fineness that of the actual the surgeon. A lady's touch I think ;)
I feel so much better I clarified this and wish my agonising over the last days could of been done without. Researching is highly valuable but to a point. After that it is futile trying to imagine what goes on. Even if I asked the surgeon to not use an assistant or let them do anything at all, I may have had a cost double to that I have paid because private theatre time is so expensive. Or maybe his suturing is less nice because he is bored of it and wants to get it over with. Who knows. I think my surgeon would strive to get the best possible result because I feel that in his personality and know it by his credentials. In this pic I have adjusted the light and it has actually made me see the crease line is in fact pretty level- in other pics it looks way off and that is what scared me as well. The breasts sometimes also"drop" at different speeds. I am enjoying seeing the changes and feeling like more natural breasts and particularly their profile shape. I don't think i could ever have implants after feeling how funny it feels with very tight breasts after surgery :) Although maybe one day I will want more fullness, for now I am very happy.
Just a quick update. I have pretty much settled back to normality now with work, intestate trips, gym, Christmas parties- wearing dresses and feeling pretty chuffed at how balanced I am now. Everyone keeps saying how tiny I am as they thing I have lost a lot of weight!
Tapes came off with a bit of gentle prodding. I haven't used any special cream - sometime I use coconut oil or cacao butter (the natural stuff which take ages to melt in your hands ;) I will buy some silicon strips soon but I am a little hesitant as a while ago I used silicon on another surgical scar and the scar became hypertrophic and took a long time to get better. I will do more research first as well.
My feelings are pretty consistent- I am happy with the result. However if I could have 100% I would have more upper pole fullness, less space between my breasts and my skin more elastic/firm but that would be a kind of big miracle so I am happy with the small one that has been grated :)
The swelling in the left is also improving, I also have feeling in both nipples, the scars look ok at moment and the right is starting to get less tight - when I push them together they look very symmetrical so I think it is only a matter of time before the tissue/skin settles from the trauma.
I am keeping on track with my high protein/low carb diet but I haven't been exercising as much as I was before the op. The 5:45am wake up for gym sessions has been a little hard to get back into but not for long. Exercising in the morning has always yielded better results for me so I will get back slowly.
I have been taking Vitamin C Zinc and some liver cleansing pills daily which I think has helped with my healing. Some fresh pineapple and daily Bromelain (or when I remember :)
Softening, feeling and nearly there
22 Dec 2013
2 months post
Hello to all ladies and those with most anxiety about being on the smaller side.
Some days I feel my breasts are not truly healed yet others they really feel like they are the ones I was born with :) This has been the best thing that has happened to me this year and I am so happy I did it. My appointment for my follow up is on January 6. I will ask about the left breast appearing to have some extra skin (this is the one that was considerably more swollen) and see if there is anything to be done for that that- the stitches have not totally dissolved which is affecting my nipple shape. I emailed about this and my surgeon said in 8 week time that should rectify. I hope so but I am not too fussed. I have feeling in both my nipples and so I am very grateful. I love the size now. I would not want to be bigger and I have learnt that my breasts look so different in different clothes, bras etc. I have a padded bra for when I want to look a bit shapelier but most of the time I feel like I am just right. My partner is amazing and loves them and told me he is not into body parts but if push came to shove he was always more of a small breast man hahaha - the truth comes out eventually ;) lucky for me it is a truth I am delighted to hear as that was the main source of anxiety I had when I realised how small a true B cup is :) I haven't been exercising mainly because I have been incredibly busy and I have gained a little weight but none actually on my breasts as the bras all fit the same. That might be a relief to some that worry - it all depends on your breast make up. If you are more glandular you will not have much change but you will if you have mope fat cells to feed in your breasts, weight fluctuations will affect them more. Lucky for me mine are almost all glandular tissue- which explains that even if I wasn't very big before they were very heavy for my frame.
I am hoping that all those ladies with upcoming breast reduction surgery are concentrating on being positive and not worried too much about size. I really think the majority of the time your surgeon is doing the best possible thing he/she can do. Trust in them or go to another surgeon if it is possible for you. I saw four surgeons before I settled on the one that I immediately felt a sense of trust in. Trust your gut ;)
Follow up with surgeon
Today I went to see my surgeon for my 2 month (ish) follow up. He too was pleased with my results and assured me the extra looseness from the left breast swelling should come good by six months or so. I am hoping it does but at the same time I am rather happy now (apart from the 100 things I could find wrong ;) As before my expectations to have a good aesthetic result, nothing tragic happening during/after surgery and sensation in both nipples (especially when I went so small) have all been delivered. Added to that I now have no feeling of weight and pain in my neck/shoulders. I have breasts that I never had in my life. Minus the scars which I hope will heal/fade well and the space between my breasts because of my prominent rib cage think my breasts look pretty good. My partner says "they're spectacular" which he never said about my old breasts so I would say my surgeon did an amazing job really!
Regarding size, at first I felt too small but still was happy. Now I feel just right for my frame and my shoulders especially which is very important to address the muscular/skeletal problems I've had in the past.
They have softened so they are I guess feeling bigger but I still fit the same bras as I did after surgery maybe a little more fullness but I have also gained a little weight due to being ill and busy and not keeping up with exercising as well as I did prior to surgery so there may actually be some extra fat in there. This week is back to work so within a week I will be on the way to working on the rest of my body now that my breasts demand I do :)
Another thing with size that I have learnt now is that the surgeons are right!!! I never knew this before as I always bought the same style bra and probably only shopped two or three brands - tried and trusted from years of being D or DD an even recently DDD. Now that I have some more choice in what I wear I can tell you I range from a 36A to a 34D and really everything in between- The cut and fabric determine what size I am! However, I can say, that most times I am a 36B. I hope those ladies that are seeking out sizing matters with their surgeon will give him/her more of an idea by taking in a bra perhaps- something they can hold and see - it really must be a difficult to hear " I want to go down to a B or C etc. Oh my favourite healing bra was the Amoena 36B. I still love it now- it provides support on those days I need more and it is just super comfortable. Worth paying more fro this one for sure! I have also realised I am a bit of a Stella McCartney fan. Her bras just seem to fit me best! I've only got two so far ...
I have a vertical scar and an short inframammary scar which looks like an "L". This is modification of the vertical technique to enable the surgeon to remove more skin. I have bought silicon sheets and scar gel and will use it but my surgeon said it only accelerates the healing that your body will do eventually so if you don't mind waiting a year or two save some money ;) Will also use bio oil as my surgeon recommended for massage of the scars.
Hope you're all doing well and keeping positive. Here are some photos to display the size matters I've been talking about.
Oh I asked my surgeon if he minded me displaying his name here and he didn't so Aussie girls- I highly recommend Hamish Farrow. My results are of course mine- yours could be better depending on your anatomy skin etc.
Sorry for the third update but I realised I removed my old pics for various reasons. I don't think that's fair to anyone or my surgeon so here goes old boobies :)
Nearly 4 months post op
26 Feb 2014
4 months post
Wow time flies and even though I try to pop in now and again to see how everyone else is doing I have realised I haven't given any attention to my own progress review hehe.
I took some photos earlier in the month and felt like I was unhappy with a few things (distance between, upper pole fullness - one bigger- nipple shape - skin tautness hehehe -the general things ;) . Taking photos and scrutinising every detail and then seeing other peoples results whether good or bad for me was just too much time spent on something as superficial as the look of one's breasts (seriously started looking at breast augmentation reviews for upper pole fullness and just had to zap myself back to reality pretty quick)- so I tried to remove my thoughts from mine at least :) But safe to say I am rather happy and there isn't a day that I feel I made the wrong choice in any way. I love being the size I am now and have enjoyed a spectacular dress I couldn't wear even when I was 18 (when a halter/backless dress meant the world haha).
Re healing, I am not spending a lot of time with cremes and so on as I said in my previous update not in a huge hurry to speed things up but a little almond oil massage every day for a minute maybe and definitely keeping the good stuff going on inside like Vitamin C and Zinc and fish oils and plenty of clean food, vegetables proteins etc. I have also found that I am rather sensitive to gluten and cutting it out has made some pretty drastic things happen to my back/waist area although I have actually put on some weight in general through lack of exercise lately- yes yes fallen off the bandwagon happens when a stressful job means energy is zapped! Again not in any hurry and not beating myself up for it - enjoying listening to my body so I dod't get sick from doing too much and letting the healing take it's time. Time heals as the saying goes ;) Hope you are all doing well and any one out there contemplating and eager just be fearless and do it :)
oh I forgot for those that need a reality check about symmetry (including myself ;)
26 Feb 2014
4 months post
check out this model- skinny some may say beautiful but ....uneven boobies :)