Breast Reduction Surgery | Aftercare
Written by Jonathan Corke
Published: September 17th, 2020
After any surgical procedure, it is essential that take good care of yourself. After all, most surgical complications arise when patients push themselves too soon or if they fail to take proper care of their treatment areas. You can help reduce the chances of any complications arising from your breast reduction surgery by following our aftercare guidelines and, most importantly, adhering to your surgeon’s aftercare advice as closely as possible.
You can find out more about the recovery process and timeline here. Meanwhile, this page will explore how best to look after yourself and what you can do to ensure the best possible results from your breast reduction procedure.
Look after your scars and the treatment area
Breast reduction surgery will leave scarring around your nipples and breasts. These scars will soften and fade over a period of about 12 months but looking after them properly is the best way to ensure you achieve the best cosmetic results.
You should keep your scars out of the sun for the next 12 months and, in the event that you do expose them to sunlight, use a high sunscreen factor. This will help prevent discolouring or darkening the scars.
You should also keep the treatment area clean. Your surgeon will inform you when you can shower and bath again following your surgery. But until that point, use a sponge with soap and water to keep the incisions clean and dry them properly.
The healing wounds may well feel itchy. You should avoid scratching them as much as you can. If you notice they begin to feel too dry, use moisturisers or bio-oil to gently massage them and keep the area hydrated.
After the incisions have fully healed and scabs have completely disappeared, you may wish to have scar massages or use scar gels for between 6 months to a year. While these are not essential, they can help to get the best cosmetic results from your breast reduction surgery.
Wear a post-operative bra
Ideally, you should wear a post-operative bra, also known as a recovery bra, every day for around 4 weeks after your breast reduction surgery. During the first week, you should wear it both night and day.
For at least 6 weeks, you should not wear wired bras as they can irritate the treatment areas. If you are recovering well, your Medbelle surgeon may suggest moving onto a sports bra. Feel free to discuss this in your follow-up appointment.
Rest well and take time off work
It is normal to feel tired and lethargic following breast reduction surgery. Make sure you listen to your body and rest properly. Your surgeon may recommend that you sleep in an upright position to help reduce the swelling, you will certainly be advised to sleep on your back, rather than your stomach for up to 6 weeks after your breast reduction surgery. It is also advised to take the full week off work if you can.
Keep active and eat well
While it is essential that you let your body rest, you should also begin to engage in light activity in the days after breast reduction surgery to prevent blood clotting. Take short walks around the house or in your local area but do not push yourself. Take your time getting back into any regular sport or workout regimes you may have, your Medbelle surgeon will have more tailored advice for your specific situation.
Eat high-protein, low-sodium foods to give your body all the right nutrients to recover from surgery. We also advise plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables, as well as lots of caffeine-free beverages and water.
Inspect your incisions regularly
You should seek medical attention if you notice any peculiarities or identify any symptoms of infection. These include:
- Increased swelling or bruising
- Persistent pain or redness
- Discharge, especially foul-smelling discharge from the area of the incision
- Blood blot signs; chest pains, breathing problems or pains in the calf
- Significant bleeding at the incisions
Don’t worry, Medbelle here is here to help
At Medbelle, the support and care for all of our patients is a top priority. That’s why your personal Medbelle adviser will be available to answer all your questions in the lead up to your surgery and for up to 6 weeks afterwards. You will also receive:
- Medbelle care package
- Pre- & post-op guidebook with tips for your aftercare process and information about how to ensure a stress-free recovery
- Regular check-ins from your personal patient care adviser to support your recovery and assess your progress
You can also resolve any questions you may have with a Medbelle surgeon in your post-operative follow-up appointment.
If you want to read more about the breast procedures that we offer please check our Breast Surgery page.