Breast reduction

Breast reduction surgery may be suitable for women with large breasts that are affecting their posture and self-confidence


Breast reduction surgery carries one of the highest satisfaction rates of any cosmetic procedure. It can help improve physical symptoms such as neck/ back pain, shoulder grooving and difficulty exercising and finding suitable clothing. Additionally, most women considering breast reduction feel self-conscious about their breasts, and many do not like the unwanted attention.

What is the best age to have a breast reduction?

Women of any age can have a breast reduction, if they are suitable, and feel that their symptoms are significantly affecting their lives. Most breasts are fully mature by the time you have reached 18 years of age. It is not uncommon to perform the procedure in younger women who have not had children. Many choose to have the operation later in life after completing their families. It is not unusual for older women who have had surgery, to say that they wished they had had the operation years ago.

Will a breast reduction lift my nipples and breast as well?

All breast reduction surgery involves an uplift and reshaping procedure to raise the height of the nipple and give a better shape to the breast. The operation can also be used to improve breast asymmetry when an overall reduction in size is desired. There are a large number of techniques available and these need to be tailored to your individual needs.

What if I am overweight?

You can expect better cosmetic results and fewer complications if you are at or near your ideal body weight. We do operate on women who are overweight as long as they understand the limitations. For some women, exercise is a problem with large breasts, and they find it easier to exercise and lose weight after the procedure.

Is breast reduction a long procedure?

Breast reduction surgery is a significant surgical operation, often taking 2-3 hours. It is essential that patients are aware of the potential complications and the surgical scars involved.

What about pregnancy and breastfeeding?

Breast reduction may be carried out before or after pregnancy. Some studies have suggested that the ability to breastfeeding is similar in women who have had breast reductions compared to those who have not. You do, however, need to be prepared for the fact that you might not be able to breast feed after breast reduction surgery.

What are the risks?

What are the possible complications of breast reduction surgery?

Possible complications of breast reduction surgery include:

Bleeding which may require a return to theatre

Infection can occur and may require treatment with antibiotics

Delayed wound healing is not uncommon, especially small areas at the “T junction” of the scars. The T junction is where most of the tightness is after removing and closing the skin

Changes in nipple sensitivity are an expected outcome – nipples can sometimes be more sensitive or less sensitive, and sensitivity will change over time

Nipple loss is a very rare complication. There is a higher risk in smokers and where a substantial reduction is required

Breastfeeding – the possibility of reduced ability to breastfeed although several studies show women who have had breast reduction are just as likely to be able to breastfeed as those who have not had breast reduction surgery

Minor residual asymmetry is common as breasts are rarely perfectly symmetrical

The scars are permanent and may be unpredictable and red for some time – most women rarely complain about the nature of scars following breast reduction – scars usually stretch over time and fade in colour

Under or over correction – removing too much or too little breast tissue – final size can never be guaranteed – patients rarely ever mention that they feel too much tissue has been removed

Revision – a small number of patients <5% may require some minor revision which can usually be performed under local anaesthetic


Prices from

Breast reduction £5500

Consultation £150

All inclusive costs for one year following surgery


Finance is available (subject to application and vetting) through a company working with the Spire Hospital. They offer interest-free loans up to a particular value. They can usually provide a decision online within 15 minutes.

Further reading on breast reduction

Information from British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (BAAPS)

Information from British Association of Plastic Reconstructive Aesthetic Surgeons (BAPRAS)

Download an information leaflet about breast reduction

breast reduction scotland

View our gallery (results will vary from patient to patient)

Breast reduction

Type of Anaesthetic

Length of Surgery
2-3 hours

Nights in Hospital

1-2 weeks off work
6 weeks before strenuous exercise


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Before and After

aftercare advice

Surgery Aftercare


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