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Plastic Surgeon Advises Waiting for Breast Surgery after Weight Loss

Dr. Yale S. Popowich advises patients to wait until they are close to their ideal weight before undergoing breast reduction or breast augmentation in Portland, following the report in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery which showed that women are often dissatisfied with their breast appearance after reduction when they subsequently lose more weight.

Portland, Oregon (October 2011) – Dr. Yale S. Popowich, a plastic surgeon in Portland, advises his breast surgery patients to consider waiting until they are near or at their ideal weight before having a breast enhancement procedure, which is substantiated by a recent study featured in the September issue of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. That study found that most patients who undergo breast reduction are initially satisfied with their results, but many of those who go on to lose weight after surgery become dissatisfied with the shape and contour of their breasts.

"Breast reduction surgery produces better long-term results if the patient is at a stable weight before surgery," explains Dr. Popowich. "Weight loss and pregnancy are the most common physical changes that can affect the breast volume. Because breast reduction surgery can be just as much about reshaping the breasts as reducing the breast volume, any significant weight loss after the surgery may change the results. Significant weight loss after breast augmentation in Portland also can impact the results, since the shape and volume of the breasts are impacted by a woman's weight."

Breast volume can change if a patient loses even 10 or 15 pounds, but the greatest changes occur with patients who lose massive amounts of weight, either by diet and exercise or bariatric surgery, according to the study. Although most patients in the study reported being able to exercise more easily as a direct result of their breast reduction surgery, those who chose to undergo breast reduction before bariatric surgery were ultimately dissatisfied with how their breast appearance changed.

"Breast reduction allows many women to exercise more easily," says Dr. Popowich. "However, if you lose a significant amount of weight after your procedure, your results may be altered. For that reason, if a woman tells me that she wants to undergo bariatric surgery or lose significant amounts of weight, I may recommend that she wait to have her breast surgery until she has achieved her goal weight."

For those who intend on undergoing bariatric surgery, waiting to have breast surgery can have its benefits. Many patients choose to undergo multiple plastic surgery procedures after significant weight loss. In some cases, breast reduction can be combined with other post-weight loss procedures such as liposuction in Portland. Dr. Popowich specializes in post-bariatric procedures and believes that the benefit of combining procedures is minimizing the recovery period after surgery.

Dr. Popowich explains, "If you undergo multiple procedures during the same operation, you only have one recovery period instead of several. However, it depends on the individual patient, and I always recommend discussing your options with a board-certified plastic surgeon."

To learn more about breast augmentation and other breast enhancement procedures in Portland, request a consultation online or call our office at (503) 292-9200.

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