Breast Reduction Surgery (Reduction Mammaplasty)

Breast Reduction Mammoplasty Sydney

  • Elective non-cosmetic procedure
  • Possible rebates from medicare and private health insurance
  • Possible hospital fees covered by private health insurance
  • 1 overnight stay in a private hospital encouraged

Breast Reduction Mammoplasty is an operation with one of the highest patient satisfaction ratings when it’s performed by a qualified and experienced plastic surgeon. Breast reduction mammoplasty surgery aims to reduce the size of the breasts and at the same time, improve the shape and position of the breasts and areolar on the chest wall, in line with the patient’s preferences. Overly large breasts can cause symptoms such as neck and back pain. It can also cause skin rashes and other day-to-day difficulties and discomfort. All of these factors can affect a woman’s decision to undergo this procedure.

The techniques used during a breast reduction mammoplasty involve removing excess skin and breast tissue, reshaping the remaining breast tissue, and moving the areola to suit the new breast.

Mammoplasty Before and After

Breast reduction gallery, patient before & after surgery, photo R01, front

Before and After Breast Reduction Treatment

Breast reduction patient before & after photo R02

Before and After Breast Reduction Treatment

Patient before & after breast reduction surgery R03, front

Before and After Breast Reduction Treatment

Breast reduction, photo R04, before & after

Before and After Breast Reduction Treatment

What happens at the first consultation?

At your first consultation, Dr Norris will focus on what you hope to achieve and what you would like your breasts to look like. It is important to understand that any discussion about your breasts should take into consideration not only a reduction in size, but also the shape, proportion, and position of the breasts on the chest wall. Dr Norris will evaluate your breasts by taking measurements and photographs for your medical records. He will also assess your skin tone, the condition of breast and fatty tissue, and position of your nipples. Dr Norris will take you through the exact details of how the breast reduction mammoplasty operation is performed, where the scars are placed, and what approach should be taken to help you achieve your desired outcome. You will also be provided with a detailed quotation which will outline surgical costs that might be covered by Medicare and your Health Fund.

If you decide to proceed with surgery, Dr Norris will see you again at a second consultation. This allows you to ask any new questions you may have, discuss anything you are not sure about, make a final decision on the most appropriate type of reduction for you, and give you a date for your procedure. He will also help you set realistic expectations about what can be achieved with breast reduction mammoplasty and explain what needs to be done to prepare.

Dr Norris insists that all patients stop smoking 2 months before embarking on any type of cosmetic surgery. There are also certain medications and supplements that should be avoided in the weeks leading up to surgery. Alcohol will also need to be limited.

How is the breast reduction mammoplasty surgery performed?

Dr Norris performs a breast reduction mammoplasty only in a fully accredited hospital. The anaesthetist that Dr Norris works with will give you a general anaesthetic, which will encourage a comfortable experience. You can expect the operation to take between 3-4 hours, depending on how much tissue needs to be removed.

There are a number of breast reduction mammoplasty techniques that can be used. Each technique determines where the incisions are made and the subsequent scars will be present.

This will most commonly involve restricting your scar to one that encircles the areola (periareolar scar) and one that passes downwards from the areola to the fold beneath the breast (vertical scar).


Anchor Scar – Dr Norris tends to use this technique in severe cases of breast ptosis or very large breasts. The incision is made around the areola, vertically down towards and along the breast crease.

Lollypop Scar – This is Dr Norris’s preferred technique. The majority of breast reductions procedures end up with this scar (short scar technique). This is the incision mentioned above that goes around the areola and down to the middle of the breast crease.

Peri Areolar – Dr Norris occasionally uses this technique. This is when an incision is made around the outer edge of the areola where the darker and lighter skin meets.

Not all women have breasts that are suitable for the short-scar technique and will require a more traditional technique such as the anchor incision. A breast reduction mammoplasty also usually involves moving the nipples to a higher position on the chest wall. In the vast majority of cases, the nipples remain attached to their blood and nerve supplies when they are moved. In very large breast reduction mammoplasties this may not be possible, in which case the nipple-areola complex is completely removed and grafted back onto the breast after it has been reduced. Unfortunately, this does mean that some, if not all, nipple sensation will be lost. Liposuction might be used in addition to surgical reduction to further enhance the result of your procedure.

At the end of the operation, a drain is placed beneath each breast which will usually be removed 1-2 days later. The incisions are closed with absorbable sutures to save you the inconvenience of having to remove them later on. A dressing is applied over the incisions and you will leave the hospital wearing your supportive surgical bra.

What happens after the surgery?

  • Most patients will be instructed to stay overnight in hospital and go home the next day but this will depend on how your surgery goes.
  • You may or may not have your drains removed in hospital. If not, the drains will be removed at Dr Norris’ rooms during your first follow-up appointment.
  • You will require a friend, family member or partner to drive you home from hospital due to the aftereffects of the anaesthetic and because your range of movement will be restricted.
  • Dr Norris will send you home with a prescription for pain medication as well as antibiotics to aid in a smoother recovery.
  • You will not be able to drive for up to 1 week possibly 2, so it’s best to make the necessary arrangements, especially if you have children at home
  • Daily short showers are permitted, provided your waterproof dressings are dried adequately.
  • It’s recommended that you sleep on your back, elevated by a few pillows for the first 6 weeks. This will help reduce your swelling and help you get a better night’s sleep too.
  • You will experience the most discomfort in the first 3 or 4 days after the surgery. Contrary to popular belief, breast reduction mammoplasty surgery isn’t necessarily more painful than augmentation mammoplasty.
  • You can expect your breasts and nipples will be bruised, swollen, tender, and sensitive to touch.
  • Most patients are able to return to work after 2 weeks but it might be more if your job is physically demanding.
  • Swelling may take up to 6 weeks to settle and wearing the necessary compression garment will help speed this along.
  • You can start light exercise around two weeks after the procedure.
  • Most patients are able to return to their regular exercise routine after 6 weeks or as instructed by Dr Norris.
  • You will have an appointment 1 week after the procedure to check and change the dressings.

Possible complications

  • Keloid Scarring – This refers to scars that begin to look raised, lumpy and even darker in colour. If this begins to happen, please inform Dr Norris and he can look at treating it with steroid injections. Wearing your advised silicone gel strips after surgery 24/7 will also help prevent this from happening
  • Haematoma – Blood can end up collecting in the breast pocket, which is either naturally absorbed into the body or sometimes requires further surgical drainage. Symptoms include swelling, pain, bruising, skin that is hot to the touch or itchy breasts
  • Infection – Infections are unpredictable and normally occur in the first 3 weeks after surgery. All infections require immediate treatment to avoid further complications
  • Numb/sensitive Nipples – This is common and normally resolves itself after a short period of time. Sometimes it can take up to 6-12 months to regain full feeling in your nipples.
  • Asymmetry – Even though Dr Norris makes every attempt to create perfect symmetry, sometimes this is not always possible. You must expect that some minor asymmetry might be visible after 12 months. Perfectly similar breasts are not possible naturally, therefore a realistic expectation is needed.

How much does a breast reduction mammoplasty cost in Sydney?

Every breast reduction mammoplasty procedure is slightly different. Not all women need the same amount of work done, which is why costs can vary quite significantly too. On average, a breast reduction mammoplasty procedure starts at about $10,000. Along with what you want to achieve, anaesthetist and hospital fees will also need to be taken into account. Dr Norris will discuss all of these factors with you during your consultation before an accurate quotation is drawn up. Since breast reduction mammoplasty is often deemed medically necessary, patients can usually apply for a Medicare or private health insurance rebate.

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