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Breast Reduction Surgery

Medically reviewed by Lorcan Sheppard BSc MBBS FRCA, Chief Medical Officer and the Medical Advisory Committee for The Private Clinic. Last Reviewed July 16th 2020.

If your breasts are causing you health or cosmetic problems, Surgical Breast Reduction (Mammoplasty) might be the best option for you. Overly large breasts are not only a nuisance to some women, but also the cause of physical discomfort, pain, and for some, a lack of confidence and self-esteem. Surgical breast reduction at The Private Clinic is a popular and effective procedure for large, heavy and sagging breasts.

Breast reduction surgery at The Private Clinic is performed by some of the UK’s top consultant plastic surgeons. Our specialised breast surgeons are available to meet at our clinics in: London Harley Street, Birmingham, Bristol, Buckinghamshire, Manchester, Leeds and Northampton or our patient coordinators at our consulting rooms in Milton Keynes where you will be able to find out more about the procedure before meeting with a surgeon.

What are the surgical options for a breast reduction?

A breast reduction procedure is aimed at reducing the overall size, weight and volume of your breasts.

There are a number of surgical options that are available for breast reduction procedures.

  • Anchor type or Inverted T breast reduction,  
  • Vertical pattern breast reduction or
  • Circumareolar breast reduction.
Book a consultation with our Consultant breast surgeons to find the best option for you. 

What are the advantages of a breast reduction?

  • Exercise more freely, for example go jogging with little pain or discomfort.
  • Dress in more shapely clothing and wear fashionable clothing
  • No more back and shoulder aches and pain.
  • Shop for pretty bras

Breast Reduction Surgery Patient story

Read Emily’s patient story and see her Breast Reduction Surgery amazing results.

The Breast Reduction Surgery Procedure

Breast reduction surgery is a very common procedure which involves the removal of excess fat, skin and glandular tissue from your breasts to achieve a new and improved size and shape to suit your body. In many cases, a breast uplift, or mastopexy, may be performed, at the same time, in order to reshape your breasts, re-position your nipples and give your breasts and lifted, youthful contour.

The procedure is carried out under general anaesthetic and takes approximately 3 hours to complete. However the exact duration of your procedure will depend on the size of your breasts and the results you desire. There are a number of techniques your surgeon may use, depending on the size of your breasts and your desired outcome.

  • Anchor type or inverted T reduction – is the most common type of breast reduction, resulting in an anchor-shaped scar starting around the areola, going down vertically and then horizontally across your natural breast crease.
  • Vertical pattern breast reduction – results in a circular scar around the areola, and a vertical scar directed downwards. This technique has the advantage of leaving no scarring under the breast and a lower chance of wound complications. However, this technique may leave a small fold of skin, initially, at the lower end of the vertical scar.
  • Circumareolar reduction – only results in a circular scar around the areola. This technique is only suitable when removing a small amount of tissue.

Your plastic surgeon will make the incisions at the agreed sites on your breasts. Once the skin is removed, the nipples are re-positioned. The size of the areola may be reduced to suit the new shape of your breasts.

Once the procedure is complete, the incisions are closed with stitches and your breasts are wrapped in a special supportive bandage. Fine plastic tubes may be left in each breast for up to 48 hours – these allow blood and fluids to drain into a bag. You may be required to stay in hospital overnight for monitoring if requested by the surgeon.

Click here for a full explanation of the different Breast Reduction procedures available at The Private Clinic.


We recommend that you take 1-2 weeks off work to recover.

When it comes to researching breast surgery procedures there are a lot of words and abbreviations that may seem confusing. We have created a glossary of the most popular Cosmetic Surgery words which you can view here.

Patient Stories

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What is breast reduction surgery?

Breast Reduction surgery is a procedure that reduces the size of large breasts, also known as a mammoplasty.

Am I suitable for breast reduction surgery?

Breast reduction surgery is not commonly performed on anyone under the age of 18 this is because your breasts are still growing before this stage and it best to wait until they have stopped before having the procedure. If you are struggling with the size of your breasts then this procedure can reduce the size making things like buying clothing and playing sports a lot easier as well as helping with back pain issues that may be caused by the weight of your breasts.

What symptoms suggest that a breast reduction procedure may be necessary?

Patients with large breasts may experience;

  • Pain in the back, neck and shoulders
  • Drooping of the breasts
  • Low self-confidence about having larger breasts
  • Difficulty getting clothing to fit
  • Unwanted attention
  • Poor posture
  • Bra straps digging in
  • Sweating underneath the breast
  • Difficulty participating in sport activities

If any of the above symptoms relate then a breast reduction procedure may be able to help resolve it.

What happens at a Breast Reduction consultation?

A consultation is the best way to find out more about the breast reduction procedure. You will be able to discuss your goals and your surgeon will be able to go through what can realistically be achieved. Your surgeon will take a look at your breasts and may take some measurements before sitting down to go through what the procedure entails and the risks and complications associated with breast reduction procedures.

What anaesthetic is used for breast reduction surgery?

A breast reduction is performed under general anaesthetic.

How long does a breast reduction procedure take?

Breast reduction procedures usually take 2-3 hours.

Will I have to stay in hospital?

You may be required to stay overnight in hospital for one night so your surgeon and the nursing team can make sure you are recovering well.

What happens during a breast reduction procedure?

The technique used during your breast reduction will vary depending on the size of your bust. An incision will be made usually around the areola and down the breast either ending at the inframammary fold or in some cases the incision may run along the inframammary fold too.  During the procedure the nipple will usually remain attached to its original blood and nerve supply. Skin and/or tissue is then removed from the breast before it is then lifted and reshaped to a smaller size. The incisions are then closed before bandages and a surgical bra are put on.

Is breast reduction surgery painful?

You will experience no pain during the procedure as you will be under general anaesthetic. After the procedure you should not feel a great amount of pain as local anaesthetic will have been administered during the procedure. As this starts to wear off in the hours following surgery you may start to feel some pain, but you will be prescribed a course of painkillers to help reduce this. Usually any pain will subside after a week.

What will my scar look like after breast reduction surgery?

There are two types of scars associated with breast reduction surgery, the lollipop scar and the anchor scar. The lollipop scar goes around the nipple and down the length of the breast; the anchor scar is the same as the lollipop scar but also continues down along the inframammary fold along the underside of the bust. If you take care of your scars these should eventually fade from being red to more a silvery colour. Scar care advice will be given to you by your surgeon post-procedure.

How long will I need to wear the surgical bra for?

We usually recommend that you continue to wear the surgical bra for at least 6 weeks post-surgery. At 6 weeks your surgeon will see you and let you know if you are okay to go back to wearing underwired bras.

When will I be able to see the results of my breast reduction surgery?

You should notice a change to the size and weight of your breasts immediately after surgery. There will be swelling for the first couple of weeks which will alter the appearance of your breasts. The best results can be seen after at least 6 weeks.

What should I expect after breast reduction surgery?

It is common to have swelling and bruising after a breast reduction procedure but these usually subsides after 1-2 weeks. You may also feel a little numb or tingly in certain areas which are down to nerve irritation which again should stop after 1-2 weeks.

How long will I need to take off work after breast reduction surgery?

We recommend that you take at least 1 week off work; some patients like to take 2 weeks off work so they are recovered fully. It does all depend on the nature of your job however, if your job involves manual labour and heavy lifting then we would suggest that you take more time off until you are fully healed to avoid any complications.

When can I exercise again after breast reduction surgery?

We recommend that you wait 4 weeks before taking part in moderate or low body exercises. You should not participate in any strenuous activities until 6 weeks post-surgery, or until your surgeon gives you the all clear.

Will I be able to breast feed after breast reduction surgery?

There is a chance that breast reduction surgery can reduce your ability to breast feed. We recommend that if you are planning for a family and want to breast feed then you should wait to have your procedure until after this time.

How much does Breast Reduction Surgery cost?

The Private Clinic sees over 15,000 new patients every year and perform over 10,000 procedures, with one of the highest –patients’ satisfaction in the sector, Trustpilot 9.4, 5 star rating, 96% would recommend us to their friends and family. We are a multi award winning provider and have been voted the Aesthetic award for Best UK Clinic Group 2017.

The Private Clinic prides itself on its commitment to Medical Expertise, Patient Care and Satisfaction, Honest advice and most importantly Results. We are above all committed to Quality. Please feel free to contact us for any advice or to book a consultation with one of our expert Breast surgeons. Breast Reduction Cost can be part of your decision to undergo a procedure but it should never be the deciding factor. For more information about The Private Clinic, our experience and medical expertise click here

The cost of a bilateral breast reduction procedure starts from £8,820. We don’t follow a one-price-fits-all policy and prices are quoted on a case by case basis. You will be given an accurate quote for your requirements following your consultation.

Consultations with our breast surgeons are £100 at our London Harley Street Clinic.

Consultations with our breast surgeons are £50 at our Bristol, Buckinghamshire, Birmingham, Leeds, Manchester and Northampton clinics.

We offer consultations with our highly experienced Patient Coordinators which require a £25 refundable deposit to secure your place.

Patient coordinators are able to offer you all the information you require prior to meeting a surgeon.

Please note all consultations at our Harley Street clinic are with a surgeon.

Is a breast reduction permanent?

Although rare, it is possible for your breasts to become larger again after a breast reduction. If you gain wait after surgery then the fat in your breasts is likely to increase or if you were to become pregnant then hormonal changes can increase the size of your bust. It is possible to perform a second breast reduction, although, as previously stated this is rare.

What are the risks with Breast Reduction surgery?

Breast reduction surgery carries risk just like any surgical procedure would do. The common risks are infection, excessive bleeding or reaction to the anaesthetic. Your surgeon will discuss all risks and complications in more detail at your consultation.

Breast Implant Safety and Risks

For information on Breast Implant Safety and risk please see;

Is there a Breast Reduction clinic near me?

The Private Clinic has clinics nationwide so we are sure to have an expert breast surgeon located near to you.

Our clinics are in;

  • London – 98 Harley street, W1G7HZ
  • Manchester –  25 St John Street, M3 4DT
  • Birmingham – 88 Hagley Road, B16 8LU – West Midlands
  • Leeds – 45 Park Square North, LS1 2NP – Yorkshire
  • Buckinghamshire – Stokenchurch Medical Center Oxford Road, HP14 3SX – South East England
  • Bristol – 92c Whiteladies Road, BS8 2QN – Clifton
  • Northampton – 82 Billing Road, NN1 5DF – East Midlands

We also have consulting rooms in Milton Keynes where you can have consultations with one of our patient coordinators.

To find out more about booking a consultation at a clinic near you, contact us here.

What does a free breast reduction consultation mean?

We are able to offer a free breast reduction consultations eaither over the phone or via a video call with one of our experienced patient coordinators. Our knowledgeable team of coordinators will provide information on the procedure and the best breast reduction surgeons to suit your requirements.

In order to secure your timed breast reduction phone or video consultation we will ask you to pay a £25 refundable deposit. This is refunded once the consultation takes place. You can change your appointment time up to 48 hours before.

Book your free phone or video consultation.

Breast Reduction Surgery

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before and after results

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    *All images, videos and testimonials are based on the personal experiences of our patients and represent individual body shapes and results. Please bear in mind that results may vary from person to person. All testimonies are provided voluntarily by our patients and clients. Their comments have not been altered in any way, and their experiences are their own.

    Our Experts

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    Here at The Private Clinic, we have over 35 years of medical cosmetic experience and expertise. We do the groundwork for all our patients and offer you only the most reputable and specialised Consultant Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeons in the UK.

    We have some of the UK’s leading Consultant Surgeons as part of our surgical breast reduction team including:

    Comments from patients

    I had my surgery back in August but I know now fully how much it has positively impacted my life. A massive thank you to the team at The Buckinghamshire clinic. My breast reduction surgery has completely changed my life for the better. I suffer much less with pain from a previous spinal surgery and I feel much more confident in my self. As well as being absolutely over the moon with the results, I was very well looked after the whole way through from the consultation to now. A special thank you to Sinead for being so brilliant and caring and Mr Richards for the fantastic results and care.

    Hayley, Oxford

    Every aspect of my operation couldn’t have gone any better, my surgeon made me feel that I couldn’t be in safer hands. The Bristol clinic and hospital where I had my surgery were lovely and the staff make you feel so welcome. The Bristol team have been extremely helpful, giving me calls and emails just asking how I’ve been and if I need anything.  I am also now having my lips done at the Bristol clinic as I feel so welcome and at home, I just couldn’t go anywhere else. You guys are the best!!! 🙂

    Holly, Bristol

    “Fantastic process from start to finish from everyone involved.” *

    Helen, London

    “Dr Fallahdar was amazing, I did my research before coming to the clinic and I wouldn’t of gone with another doctor except Dr Fallahdar.  I would highly recommend him as he has changed my life more than you could imagine.  Thanks so much!” *



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