Breast Reduction Recovery-What To Expect After Surgery
Many women choose breast reduction surgery as an alternative to living a life filled with medical complications other frustrations that can come when breasts are too large. Back pain, shoulder pain and difficulty finding clothes that fit have women seeking out breast reduction for relief. What can a woman expect after this type of procedure as far as recovery goes?
Waking Up From Breast Surgery
After breast reduction surgery, the first sensations a patient will normally feel are the groggy side effects of the anesthesia. There may be slight nausea which is a common side effect of anesthetic medication given during surgical procedures. A surgical compression garment or gauze will already be in place over the breasts. There will be sutures or stitches and tubes left in the incision to drain off any fluid. After surgery, there are typical phases to breast reduction recovery and recommended tips for faster healing.
Dealing With Sutures And Drainage Tubes
Breast reduction recovery can mean learning how to move around without disturbing any sutures or drainage tubes. Getting comfortable for sleep can be a challenge. Drainage tubes typically have to stay in place for a week or more . During that time, getting some assistance with pillow propping, hair washing and bathing can go a long way in keeping sutures in place and for preventing unnecessary pain. After breast reduction surgery, the patient will not be able to lift the arms so arranging for a caregiver at that time can really help.
Tender Breasts And Swelling Are Normal After Breast Reduction
After breast reduction, it is normal to experience tender breasts, pain and even swelling. There can be bruising, redness and even loss of sensation in the nipples. Feeling sore and tender after surgery is normal for the first few days. Pain medication can help alleviate some of the discomfort.
It may take weeks for post-surgical swelling to completely subside. There should be no cause for alarm if swollen breasts look oddly shaped. It may take more than a month to get the true outcome of the surgery and a real estimate of the final breast shape.. Recommended tips that can help reduce painful swelling include cutting back on sodium intake and increasing water intake to flush excess fluid out of the body.
The Compression Garment
During breast reduction recovery, a compression garment is worn over the breasts for the first weeks following surgery. This garment is designed to reduce the amount of time it takes to heal. The stretchy, supportive garment controls swelling and bruising by supporting tender breast tissue. It serves another function as well. The compression qualities of this garment hold the breast in proper alignment and allow the tissue to conform to the desired contours.
Typical Breast Reduction Healing Time
How long should someone plan to take time off work for recovery? The average recovery time is about 2 weeks. The first few days are the most challenging when it comes to safely and comfortably getting back into a routine. Bending, heavy lifting and using arms above the head need to be curtailed for the first few days. After that, it is okay to gradually increase daily activities. Strenuous activities should held off for 6 weeks to allow full healing.
Healing time after breast reduction can be affected by the amount of trauma to the breast area during surgery. Removal of large amounts of tissue and greater incisions naturally take more time to heal. By taking it easy for the first few days,being careful with sutures, wearing the compression garment and gradually easing back into normal daily activities, full breast reduction recovery can happen in the fastest time possible. Having someone around to fluff the pillows can't hurt either.
Find a plastic surgeon that offers breast reduction surgery.
New Haven, CT
Cedar Rapids, IA