Dr. Tenley Lawton regularly performs breast reductions (mammoplasty) in Newport Beach. Breast reduction is popular because the weight of excess breast tissue can impair a woman’s ability to lead an active life. It can be difficult to find bras that provide enough support for everyday wear, but when it comes to exercise like running or aerobics, finding a bra that supports overly large breasts with comfort and security, for example, is virtually impossible.
Breast reduction surgery offers an elegant and effective solution because it reduces a significant amount of excess tissue. With the shoulders and back free from added strain, patients enjoy a life-changing increase in comfort and mobility. Breast reductions have been known to diminish or reduce chronic neck, back, and head pain caused by this strain. There’s also an aesthetic aspect to final results. Patients who undergo a breast reduction often notice that they look more youthful, that their bodies look more balanced and proportional. As a result, patients often feel much more comfortable in their bodies—not to mention more confident and attractive. To find out how a breast reduction can help you feel healthier, contact Dr. Lawton to schedule a consultation.
Am I a Good Candidate for Breast Reduction?
Reduction mammoplasty, or breast reduction surgery, is performed to reduce the size and weight of large breasts, removes excess breast fat, glandular tissue, and skin. Women with overly large breasts know that the weight of excess breast tissue impairs their ability to lead a fully active life. And the self-consciousness often associated with having large pendulous breasts can be painful emotionally as well.
Patients should be non-smokers and physically healthy and have realistic expectations for how any breast procedure will affect your life, something that Dr. Lawton can discuss during your consultation in her Newport Beach plastic surgery office. Breast reduction may also be a good option for women who:
- Have breasts that hang low and have stretched skin
- Have nipples that rest below the breast crease when your breasts are unsupported
- Have enlarged areolas caused by stretched skin
- Experience back, neck and shoulder pain caused by the weight of your breasts
- Have regular indentations from bra straps that support heavy, pendulous breasts
- Have skin irritation beneath the breast crease
What Happens During a Breast Reduction?
Dr. Lawton performs her breast reduction procedures at the Newport Beach Surgery Center across from Hoag Hospital. At the accredited facility, Dr. Lawton and a board-certified anesthesiologist will meet you and prepare you for surgery. The anesthesiologist will insert an IV and administer general anesthesia. The operation itself usually takes between two and four hours to perform. During the procedure, Dr. Lawton will make incisions to remove excess tissue and balance nipple size. She will work to make sure the breasts are more proportional and yet look natural, balanced, and aesthetically appealing. Dr. Lawton’s unique stitching technique provides the optimal opportunity for reduced and limited scarring. After surgery, you will be in the recovery room until discharged and given pain medications for at-home use. Each patient’s recovery time varies, but most patients report limited downtime of 2-7 days.
Breast Reduction Incision Types
Achieving that balance between minimum invasiveness and maximum effectiveness is always one of Dr. Lawton’s paramount concerns. That’s why her breast reduction procedures will typically employ one of the following incision types.
- “Donut” Incision: For some patients, Dr. Lawton will recommend what is often called a “donut” incision. Using this technique, two circular incisions are made around the border of the areola (the dark skin surrounding the nipple). This technique is ideal for patients primarily concerned only with removing a moderate amount of excess skin from the breast. The size of the areola can also be reduced using this incision type, and any incision lines will be well hidden by the color difference between the skin of the breast and the areola complex.
- “Keyhole” Incision: When Dr. Lawton needs more access to the tissues of the breast and more latitude for reshaping those tissues, she may recommend a “keyhole” incision. This technique relies on creating a circular incision around the areola and then two incisions vertically down the bottom curve of the breast. The incision ends up looking like the “keyhole” that the technique is named after. This allows Dr. Lawton to reshape breast tissue in two dimensions, as well as to remove unwanted excess skin and fat.
- “Anchor Incision: The most common type of incision for a breast reduction is colloquially known as an “anchor” incision. A circular incision is made around the areola, then down vertically to the breast crease. A third incision is made along the breast crease itself, creating the appearance of the so-called “anchor.” This allows Dr. Lawton to reshape the breast in three-dimensions, maximizing her ability to create an end result that looks graceful, natural, and proportional.
Once the incisions have been made, excess skin and tissue are removed from the breasts. The remaining breast tissue is then reshaped into its graceful new silhouette. The areola complex may also be moved into its new, more youthful-looking position. Breast reduction allows patients to achieve smaller, lighter, firmer breasts. During your consultation with Dr. Lawton, you will discuss which incision type will be best achieve your desired results.
What Makes Dr. Lawton Unique?
Dr. Tenley Lawton might be singular among her Orange County breast reduction colleagues. Her approach emphasizes a final form that is both natural and sophisticated. As a woman, she understands fashion choices, exercise and more can be affected by breast size. She focuses on helping patient’s breast most suitable for both their body type as well as their lifestyle.
Breast Reduction Recovery
Breast reductions are usually performed on an outpatient basis, but it may occasionally be necessary for patients to remain in the hospital overnight. In most cases, however, patients will be able to return home the same day and begin their recovery process. Most Orange County breast reduction patients report full recovery from a primary breast reduction at roughly two to six weeks. That said, every patient is different and will receive individualized recovery instruction from Dr. Lawton. However, most patients will recover along the following basic timeline:
- 1-3 Days: During the first three days, patients may notice significant swelling and bruising around the breasts. Patients may also be required to wear a compression bandage (or special surgical bra) in order to help preserve results. Patients are encouraged to engage in light movement (walking to the kitchen and back, for example) during these first three days in order to promote healing.
- 1-2 Weeks: During the first two weeks, patients can expect swelling and bruising to continue. Light showering is usually permitted during this time period, but harsh scrubbing is discouraged. Patients can usually expect to return to work after the first week of recovery.
- 4-6 Weeks: After four to six weeks, and with the approval of Dr. Lawton, most patients can return to more vigorous activities, such as high-energy exercise. Scarring around the incisions sites will also begin to fade in color, and after roughly 3-6 months should be significantly less visible.
Many breast reduction procedures are performed with dissolvable sutures, so patients in those cases do not need to return to have any stitches removed. However, patients will need to schedule regular check-ins with Dr. Lawton in order to ensure healing is progressing properly. Patients will also be instructed to avoid certain behaviors, such as using alcohol or tobacco products. Smoking cigarettes during recovery (or leading up to surgery) is especially discouraged.
Breast Reduction Results
Patients who have undergone a breast reduction procedure will notice an immediate change once the surgery is over. Breasts will be lighter and smaller, even accounting for any swelling in the days immediately following surgery. Once the swelling subsides, the changes in shape and orientation will become more apparent. Additionally, Dr. Lawton may be able to correct for some of the natural asymmetry that develops over time. Your breast reduction results will be effective, especially if you maintain a relatively stable weight. This means that the size of your breasts will remain relatively constant, however with time and hormone shifts there could be further changes as you age.
Benefits of Breast Reduction
Patients who have undergone a breast reduction often report significant benefits, including the relief of chronic back and neck pain. Patients may also feel more comfortable in their own bodies, and their new proportions may significantly expand their wardrobe options.
Would you like to learn more about a Breast Reduction procedure? Fill out the “Request a Consultation” form on this page or call Tenley K. Lawton M.D. at 949-640-0999 to schedule your consultation with Board-Certified plastic surgeon Dr. Tenley Lawton serving Newport Beach and the greater Orange County, CA area.