Breast surgery has often been saddled with a negative stigma as a superficial procedure, used only by women to attract men or feel better about their appearance; however, there are two sides to the surgery. Many procedures are not merely cosmetic enhancements, but are rather used to reconstruct the breasts or help alleviate physical discomfort and other ailments.
Extremely large, natural breasts can create many difficulties for women. Petite women have difficulty supporting the extra weight, which can lead to chronic back pain, posture problems, and difficulty finding adequately supportive bras and well-fitting clothing.
Breast reduction surgery allows relief from these problems, as well as an increased self-esteem. During the procedure, a plastic surgeon will remove excess tissue until the bust reaches a more proportionate and reasonable size. This is sometimes combined with nipple repositioning for optimal results.
Women who undergo this procedure feel immediate relief from pain and can stand tall once again. Since this surgery is sometimes done to alleviate medical conditions, it may be covered by some insurance policies, in some instances. Contacting one’s insurance company about coverage rules is recommended before undergoing the procedure.
Another important surgery is reconstruction following a mastectomy. Women who lose a whole or partial breast to cancer often feel incomplete or emotionally distressed by their new appearance. Plastic surgeons combine reconstruction techniques with augmentation to help achieve a balanced appearance, allowing cancer survivors to heal both physically and emotionally from their ordeal. Many women find they have more peace of mind and an improved self-image after reconstruction surgery.
A breast lift is another method of correcting deformities that can occur over time or by virtue of genetics alone. Even young women can experience excessive sag in the chest region. Excessive dropping can cause emotional distress and lowered self-esteem. Proper-fitting clothing and undergarments also become complicated and difficult to find, causing further stress and frustration.
A lift procedure surgically corrects drooping and lifts the tissue to a more desirable position, as well as reducing and repositioning the nipple and areola when necessary. This helps improve posture, firms the breast, and creates a more harmonious and balanced appearance.
Another common deformity is noticeable asymmetry, either in size, shape, or position on the chest. Most women have a small degree of imbalance; however, some may have drastic differences, such as breasts with completely different cup sizes.
In most cases, augmentation or reduction techniques can help balance out the bust. Nipples and areolas can also appear asymmetric, in which case a plastic surgeon can help reposition or change the size to better match. In either case, implants are not always necessary, but sometimes provide the most optimal results.
Even men can benefit from breast surgery. Gynecomastia is a condition where a male develops ‘woman-like’ visible breasts. It can occur from weight gain, certain medications, or simply by genetics. In many cases, exercise and diet alone cannot help eliminate excess tissue from the area. Gynecomastia surgery, which is similar to a breast reduction, can be performed to flatten the chest and give it a more masculine appearance.