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Breast Reduction

What is Breast Reduction?

Overly-large breasts can cause physical discomfort for many women, as as poor self-consciousness. Breast reduction surgery is done to reduce the size of the breasts so they are more proportionate to the rest of the body, as well as relieve discomfort for a better quality of life. Health insurance may cover the procedure if their particular criteria is met.

Who is a Good Candidate?

Women who have had children, are overweight, or have a genetic disposition for large breasts can often benefit from breast reduction surgery. Those with overly-large breasts that are experiencing backaches, neck aches, skin irritation, or difficulty breathing can often experience relief from this procedure. It is important that individuals are finished having children and breastfeeding before undergoing breast reduction surgery, as these factors can enlarge the breasts. A consultation with Dr. Ehrmantraut can help to best determine if this procedure is right for you, and if you may meet the criteria for your health insurance to cover the procedure.

The Procedure

The breast reduction procedure can be performed using a selection of incision patterns. These include the donut incision, which is created around the areola, or the keyhole incision, which is created around the areola and vertically down to the breast crease and horizontally across the breast fold. For those patients with extremely large breasts free nipple grafting may be necessary to ensure the viability of the nipple. The incision pattern used will be determined by the amount of reduction desired.

After the appropriate incision pattern is made, the nipple will be repositioned, underlying breast tissue reduced, and the breasts lifted and shaped. Incisions will be closed with sutures. Drains may be placed to collect any excess fluid during recovery.


Following a breast reduction, patients will need to wear a special compression bra to reduce swelling and hold the breasts into place. Swelling and bruising will occur, and any pain can be controlled with pain medication. Patients should sleep with their torso elevated by pillows or a recliner chair to reduce swelling and pain. Strenuous activity and heavy lifting should be avoided for at least four weeks. Dr. Ehrmantraut will provide you with specific post-op instructions.

If you are living with discomfort caused by overly-large breasts, contact our office today to learn more about breast reduction surgery. We serve patients in the southern Maryland, Annapolis and Arlington, VA areas.
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