Is Breast Reduction Surgery Painful?

December 29, 2012

Many San Francisco Bay Area women with large breasts have back, neck and shoulder pain. Large breasts can increase stress on the spine. The force of gravity causes the front of the body to pull forward which causes the normal curve of the spine to straighten out causing widespread muscular pain.

Women looking to eliminate back pain want to know how painful a breast reduction mammoplasty might be. The surgery itself is done under general anesthesia; the patient is asleep and feels no pain during surgery. There is not any dissection of chest muscle (as there is for a breast augmentation) and so is generally much less painful. Since pain thresholds are different for everyone, the patient is given prescription pain medication to keep her comfortable. Most women only need the stronger pain medication for a day or two after surgery and then switch to “over the counter” analgesics such as Tylenol. Of course, any side effects or severe prolonged pain needs to be reported immediately.

Women with large pendulous breasts notice the immediate relief after surgery from back, neck and shoulder pain, and many say it is easier to breathe with the weight reduced off their chest. After expected general soreness for a few days, the biggest complaint I’ve gotten is that the patient wishes she had the surgery sooner.


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