Breast Reduction Benefits in Adolescents – Physical and Psychological Considerations

Breast reduction surgery, or reduction mammaplasty, has been shown to have a positive impact on women suffering from large breasts by improving symptoms as well as overall quality of life. A recent article published in Pediatrics finds that adolescent who have similar complaints will also benefit from this type of plastic surgery.

Macromastia, or breast hypertrophy, is a condition in which the breasts are overly large, resulting in significant additional weight burden for women. This may produce symptoms of shoulder, neck or back pain, problems with posture, shoulder grooving from bra straps and rashes under the breasts (“intertrigo”), as well as difficulty participating in sports or exercise and in finding clothes that fit. In the latest study (1), teenage girls who have macromastia and may be candidates for breast reduction plastic surgery not only demonstrate similar physical complaints, but also have impaired health-related quality of life and are have 3 times the risk for eating disorders compared to their peers. The benefits of breast reduction surgery on teenagers and adolescents extend beyond symptomatic relief of pain to an improvement in self-esteem and psychological well-being.

Breast reduction surgery includes reducing breast tissue volume, lifting the breasts and repositioning the nipples superiorly. It is performed with a number of different techniques, and some options such as limited incision reduction mammaplasty and liposuction produce minimal, barely perceptible scars. Adolescents and teenagers need to want to undergo surgery themselves and to have realistic expectations of their plastic surgery. Understanding risks and possible complications is important prior to undergoing any surgical procedure, and parental consent is necessary for any patients under 18 years of age.

Dr. Olivia Hutchinson is a female board certified plastic surgeon in NYC and offers breast reduction surgery for teenage girls and adult women. To schedule a consultation with Dr. Hutchinson, please contact us or call us at (212) 452-1400.

1. Cerrato, Felecia; Webb, Michelle L.; Rosen, Heather; et al. “The Impact of Macromastia on Adolescents: A Cross-Sectional Study”. Pediatrics 2011-3869; July 16, 2012,doi:10.1542.

Posted in: Breast Reduction, Plastic Surgery in Teenagers and Adolescents

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