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Mrs. M’s Story 

  • Breast Reduction Surgery

 

I had contemplated a breast reduction throughout my 30s & 40s. I had gone as far as a going on a couple of consults in my late 40s when my sister went for her breast augmentation! 

 

The straw that broke the camel's back came when I was shopping for a gown for my daughter's wedding. I just hated my chest so much at that point that I made a consult that same week! I saw three different plastic surgeons over a two week period and I ended up booking the surgery with the third plastic surgeon I saw.  My surgery was set of July 6, 2007.  My surgeon was positive insurance would approve my reduction, and sure enough two weeks later, I was approved!  With only three weeks until the surgery I was a bit panicked and in search of information from people who had gone through the experience.  My husband suggested I look for a message board/forum – and that is how I ended up on the "old" board.

 

I was an overflowing, very saggy overstuffed 36DD. I had grown from a 32B when I went off to college with, to a 34C with weight gain and then kept growing and sagging more through pregnancy, nursing and more weight gain. I wanted to be a C cup again and my plastic surgeon said he would do his best to get me there.

 

My surgery was uneventful, just over three hours as an outpatient. I was given morphine in recovery which caused me to get sick, but otherwise, everything was great. Very little pain or swelling and after 2 days I was able to switch to extra strength Tylenol in lieu of the prescription pain medication - Percocet.  I had a small hematoma at two weeks in my right breast that was aspirated, but otherwise I had a very easy time, I did nothing for two weeks-no cooking, cleaning, lifting.  I was able to drive within ten days after the procedure and went back to work part time around that time as well.

 

From the first unveiling when I had my stitches removed at five days post op, or OTR (Over the Rainbow), I was told that I had "dog ears" on the outer edges of each breast and that my plastic surgeon would do a revision at six months. In the meanwhile, I found a great gown (strapless) for my daughter's wedding which was an unbelievably incredible highlight of my life which took place four months after my reduction. I didn't wear a bra with the gown as it was a bustier type top.

 

As the months went by, my "perky" breasts started to droop and I cried when I failed the pencil test!  My plastic surgeon said that due to my age/menopause my skin has lost its elasticity and the only way I could be perky was to have implants. I decided to pass and to accept that droopy isn't saggy.  I am and will never again be as saggy as I was!  I can wear a shelf cami top and sometimes go braless and wear strapless tops as well – I definitely have so many more options now.

 

At six months post op, I had my revision for the dog-ears in my plastic surgeon’s office. It was awful experience!   I was awake during this procedure and one spot on my breast did not get numbed properly with the local anesthetic.  This revision was very painful.  I hated being able to envision what he was doing and then would make the mistake of looking at the surgical table after to see the potion of tissue that was cut away. Blech!  The revision took about 45 minutes.

 

I continued to wear a sports bra after the revision during the recovery period and the stitches came out after a week.  The issue I continued to have during the recovery was having the bra ride up onto the incision line, and causing me great discomfort.  I could not wear any under-wire (my sexy bras) as I had too much discomfort after.

 

When I went back to see the plastic surgeon a couple of months after the revision he agreed the incisions had not healed as well as my breast reduction scars had, in which they were fading away nicely. He suggested steroid shots to try and calm the scars down and so that the sensitivity would go away. I waited another month and when things did not progress, I decided the injections were the right way to go. 

 

The injections were painless and within a few weeks, my right scar was feeling and looking better.  However my left one continued to lag behind with healing and my plastic surgeon wanted to do another round of shots at my one year check up (six months post revision).  Unfortunately my doctor was out of the injections at that time, and I had to make another appointment to follow up later. For some reason, I didn't follow through with making the appointment for the injections; however last week when I had a skin cancer screening at my dermatologist he noticed my angry left scar and suggested I try a .1% Retin A cream on the scar for two months and after three days, the redness seemed to start to fade a bit!  I have a good feeling that this course of action will be the final answer to this stubborn scar!

 

Would I go through this again? In a heartbeat! I have already referred two 19 year old patients to my plastic surgeon who both said having the breast reduction gave them a new outlook on life!  My mind is still undecided as far as the revision. The dog ears were hideous, but in reality it was a cosmetic fix. I had healed so nicely without any pain/problems from the actual breast reduction; it kind of put a damper on things to be uncomfortable for six months from something I didn't realize at the time was elective rather than necessary. There wasn't much information on the board at the time about the problem with having dog ears. After my revision it seemed that quite a few people had theirs done without any problem.

 

The friends and support that I have gained from the message boards has been invaluable and my goal in staying around on the boards this long was to "pay it forward".  Writing this has been another step towards that goal....



Mrs. M

 





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