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This has to be one of our most satisfying operations. Patients who have struggled with neck, back, and shoulder pain due to breast enlargement are thrilled not only with their pain relief, but with the smaller and more shapely breast that has resulted. The deep shoulder grooves from heavy bras resolve, and patients just look smaller as well.
Am I a Candidate?
The above symptoms, with the addition of some headaches, are the typical presentation of someone with excessive breast size. Patients often find that elevating the breasts or lying down help with the symptoms. Deep bra strap grooves and the presence of rashes under the breasts are often associated as well. Patients often have to seek help at specialty bra shops as clothing stores won’t have garments large enough.
What About Insurance
This is quite variable from company to company. Generally, if you have neck, back, and shoulder pain due to breast enlargement, and you have rashes or deep grooves, you are a likely a candidate. Usually a referral from a primary care physician or chiropractor to us is required, so it’s good to have that lined up ahead of time. The insurance company often requires a certain amount of breast tissue be removed, and we will help you with this estimate. We then send a letter requesting authorization from the insurance company.
HOW IS THE PROCEDURE DONE?
This is an outpatient procedure with a general anesthetic. Markings are performed before surgery to get the precise pattern we want. Incisions are made around the areola, and from the areola to the fold under the breast. Usually there is an incision under the breast as well if you have a lot of extra skin. Be wary of surgeons who advertise breast reduction with small incisions, because frequently those breasts end up drooping again soon. We are comfortable with all the techniques, and will educate you about your best option.
WHAT ARE THE RISKS?
Healing problems, mostly small ones, can occur after breast reduction. Infections and bleeding are uncommon but not impossible. Changes in nipple sensation are usually temporary, but can be permanent. Very rarely a nipple can be lost to a blood supply problem. The breasts may not be the exact same size, or the nipples in the exact same location. Scars might be permanently visible or get thick. For the most part, the patients who have this procedure are so happy with the way they feel that they have remarkably few complaints.
Making Meaningful Differences
We consider breast reconstruction one of the most important things we do. The chance to meaningfully help someone at one of the most difficult times in their lives is the reason we went into medicine. The possibility of a mastectomy for cancer or other breast disease, or the deformity that has come after a lumpectomy, is daunting for most women. We feel we provide a highly supportive, caring, and warm environment for those facing this challenge.
What Do I start
After the detection of a lump, and the visits with your primary care physician and likely a general surgeon, it may be appropriate for you to see a plastic surgeon. They, and you, may have determined that mastectomy is right for you, or at least a possibility. We can then educate you about breast reconstruction and its possible role in your situation. We will also coordinate your care with the other providers, so that everyone understands the plan and the reasons for it. We will show pictures and drawings, examine you carefully for all the options available, and even put you in touch with our other patients if you wish.
What Are The Options
This is a highly customized situation, depending on your tumor, your body, your preferences regarding the extent of the surgery, and many other factors. Your consultation will help you with these decisions.
The most common method of reconstruction in this country is the expander/implant method. At the time of the mastectomy, a shaped tissue expander, which is like a deflated saline implant, is placed under or in front of the pectoralis muscle of the chest. Over the next several weeks after surgery, after a waiting period for early healing to occur, the expander can be filled with saline through the skin. Gradually the tissues are expanded to develop a pocket into which a permanent implant, commonly a silicone gel implant, can be placed at a second, outpatient surgery. The advantage to this method is that it involves no additional incisions beyond that of the mastectomy, it is relatively simple, and most patients are satisfied with it. The disadvantages are that the implants are not your own tissue, they may not feel as natural, and there may be visible rippling of the implant. They are also not desirable if you are going to have radiation, as they can get quite hard.
The entire staff was so nice during consultation, pre op and post op. I can't say enough good words about the wonderful job Dr. Muskett did on my tummy tuck with work on my abs as well. The scar is minimal and the recovery wasn't nearly as bad as I was thinking. Definitely recommend Dr. Muskett at Billings Plastic Surgery.
Front desk staff was wonderful. Nurses and Dr. Grosso were efficient, friendly, and had complete confidence in themselves. They answered all the questions we had and more. We went for a consultation and did not feel uncomfortable or "judged" at all, will be returning!
I received a breast reduction from Dr. Grosso and I am so happy with the results. I was hesitant to go in because I am 19 and I was worried that they would try to talk me out of the procedure. I have had headaches and severe back pain for five years and just three months afterwards I am so happy and pain free. Dr. Grosso and all his staff were friendly and professional before, during and well after the surgery whenever I had questions or concerns.
My experience was amazing! I can truly say my breasts are gorgeous and perfectly symmetrical! My recovery was so easy! I highly recommend Dr. Muskett! His staff was friendly and professional, bedside manner is great, and I felt very comfortable around him. I couldn't say enough good things! I am so thankful I was recommended to go to Dr. Muskett!
I call this incredible medical facility “My Happy Place.” Not only was I greeted with kindness, care and concern from the office personnel but also treated with dignity and respect from the physicians. Every situation is followed through and I’m never left to figure my medical issues by myself. Thank you.