Things to consider in breast reductions
BY JAMI NELSON, RN CANS
What is a good age to do a reduction? This is a question that only you can answer. We have treated girls as young as 16 and as old as 82. If you are in pain and suffering, and you are tired of putting up with it, then it’s time. You are always welcome to come in for a consultation with one of our board certified Plastic Surgeons to see if you are a candidate. We will check your insurance to see if the procedure is covered under your plan. Insurances will usually have a checklist of criteria that needs to be met. Such as, if you have rashes under your breasts, do you have grooves in your shoulders from your bra strap, do you see a chiropractor, massage therapist, or physical therapist for your back, neck, and shoulder pain. Do you have frequent headaches? Next they will take your height and weight and put it into a formula to determine your body surface area (BSA) and that correlates to an amount of grams that has to be removed from each breast. That is a number that our surgeons are committed to. They have to remove that amount during surgery or insurance will not pay and it becomes your responsibility.
So let’s say that your insurance says they need a minimum of 500 grams of breast tissue removed from each breast. What does that mean to you?? You just want to go from a DDD cup to a C cup. This is how we decide if your goals are realistic. There are 454 grams in a pound. So we will have to remove a little over a pound from each breast for sure. That is removed and then weighed in the actual surgery room. You wanted a C cup which is about half the size of your DDD. Therefore they will remove more than what is required by insurance to get you there. Now on the flip side……What if you only want to be slightly smaller? Your breasts are just very droopy and really aren’t that heavy, but you want them perkier and lifted. This is not a reduction, but instead it is a breast lift. Remember, even if you answer all the insurance questions correctly, our surgeons HAVE to remove a certain amount that has been predetermined by an insurance company. It simply is not worth it for you or us to try to get a cosmetic procedure covered by insurance. No one will be happy in the end. When we have a breast reduction patient that is not happy…..it is usually someone that feels that too much was removed.
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