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Dr. Lloyd Van Wyck

The Recovery Process After Breast Reduction Surgery

By Lloyd G. Van Wyck, M.D. on January 06, 2017

A woman covering her breastBreast reduction surgery can enhance a woman's bustline, reducing the drooping and sagging of the breasts and improving the overall figure in the process. We have helped countless women at out Ottawa plastic surgery centre with this breast enhancement procedure.

After the surgery is performed, patients should follow their post-op instructions closely. Let's go over breast reduction post-op instructions briefly.

How Much Time to Take Off From Work

In general, patients should expect to take about two weeks off of work if they undergo breast reduction surgery. This is to help ensure that patients heal quickly and do not experience serious complications or major side effects as they recover.

Keep in mind that even when you return to work, you may be advised to avoid performing certain duties at your job for another week or a few weeks. You can discuss this with you surgeon as part of the consultation process.

What to Expect Immediately Following Breast Reduction Surgery

Immediately after breast reduction surgery, it's not uncommon for patients to feel groggy as they anesthetic wears off. Soreness and discomfort around the chest is also natural. Patients should return home and rest, sitting in bed with the body propped up by a few pillows. Patients will want to continue sleeping in this manner until their surgeon says they can return to lying flat, on the side, or on the stomach.

Common Side Effects After Breast Reduction Surgery

Some of the most common side effects patients experience after they undergo breast reduction surgery include the following:

  • Soreness and Discomfort – Pain is common in the early days of recovery, particularly around the breasts and chest area. Thankfully the pain is manageable and temporary, and most pronounced in the first days after surgery. Take any pain relievers as directed by your surgeon.

  • Bruising and Swelling – Bruising and swelling around the breasts are also common following surgery. The major bruising and swelling will fade by the end of three weeks to a month, with some residual swelling lasting for a few weeks afterward. Wearing your compression garment as directed will help keep these side effects under control.

  • Changes in Nipple and Breast Sensitivity – Since incisions are made on the breasts for the surgery, there will be some issues with breast sensitivity and nipple sensation following the procedure. This could mean numbness or hypersensitivty, though these issues should be less prevalent as patients continue to heal.

Avoid Strenuous Physical Activity

In the first month after surgery, patients need to avoid strenuous physical activity, such as heavy lifting, major cardio, and strenuous exercise. Patients can return to these activities when they receive the okay from their surgeon.

Keep in mind that patients are encouraged to walk lightly around the house after their procedure for brief stretches of time. This promotes circulation in the legs and helps prevent complications related to unwanted blood clots.

Attend Follow-up Visits as Scheduled

After your breast reduction surgery, patients will be asked to attend follow-up visits with their surgeon. These follow-up visits are intended to ensure patients are healing properly and are not suffering from serious side effects as they recover Be sure to go to all of these follow-up visits, and to ask questions should they arise between visits.

Scarring After Surgery and What to Expect

Scarring is a reality following any kind of surgery, and patients should understand there will be scars after a breast reduction. These scars will fade with time, however, and should not be as noticeable in the months and years ahead. These scars can be hidden by most undergarments, bathing suits, and tops.

Learn More About Breast Reduction Surgery

For more information about breast reduction surgery and how it can help you look your absolute best, be sure to contact our advanced cosmetic plastic surgery center today. Our team is here to help you look your absolute best.

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