Breast Reduction Surgery

Breast Reduction Surgery

Reduces Size, Volume of Uncomfortably Large Breasts

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Breast reduction surgery can alleviate physical conditions associated with overly large breasts such as back and neck pain, skin irritation, skeletal deformities and breathing problems. Following the procedure, you may experience a new sense of freedom in your exercise and physical activities. It can also improve your self-esteem and increase your self-esteem, self-image and overall well-being.

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Before the Surgery

Breast Reduction Consultation

We discuss your reasons for pursuing breast reduction surgery, and your desired breast size. We conduct a thorough medical history, including your family history, general health status, lifestyle habits such as smoking, previous operations, and any medications you may be taking.  Your breasts will be measured and assessed for size and shape, and photographs may be taken for your medical record. Based on these findings, we recommend a course of treatment specific to you. We discuss the expected outcome, potential risks and complications, and your post-operation recovery.

Blood Tests

Pre-surgical testing requires several blood tests to test your liver and kidney function, and to determine if you have any infection, blood disorder, or anemia, that may have gone previously undetected.


High-quality, digital X-ray images may be recommended to detect any underlying breast abnormalities that can not be felt in women who have no signs or symptoms of the disease.

Our Locations
Duke Health offers locations throughout the Triangle. Find one near you.


Techniques for breast reduction vary. The ideal method for your breast reduction will be determined by your anatomy, your surgeon’s preferences, and your desired results.

Breast Reduction Surgery (Mammoplasty)

The most common technique involves an anchor-shaped skin incision that encircles the areola (the dark skin that surrounds your nipple), extends downward, and follows the natural curve of the crease beneath the breasts. Excess fat and glandular tissue are removed. Depending on your specific anatomy, your nipples may require repositioning. Liposuction is sometimes performed to improve the contour on the sides of the breasts and torso. The procedure typically takes three hours and is performed under general anesthesia. It may be performed in an outpatient facility or may require an overnight stay. 


Your breasts will be wrapped in bandages following the procedure and you may need to wear a surgical bra. Recovery takes one to two weeks. It may take several months for all swelling to subside and scars to fade.

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Why Choose Duke

The Comforts of a Private Practice
Our surgeons combine the comforts you expect from a private practice with the advantages you gain from seeking experts at a large medical institution. Our clinics are conveniently located and offer free parking.

Size and Shape Matters
We work closely with you to understand your breast anatomy, skin elasticity and body type before recommending whether breast reduction will give you the results you seek.

Personalized Treatment Recommendation
Our plastic surgeons help you understand what is involved, and help you make a decision that is right for you. Many factors, including medical concerns, and whether you plan to have children, are important considerations. We help you understand your options, and ensure the timing of your surgery is appropriate.

Breast Reduction for Men
Enlarged breasts in men is referred to as gynecomastia. It may be corrected with breast reduction surgery. 

Respected Surgeons
Our plastic surgeons share their experience by teaching advanced breast surgical techniques to doctors across the country and around the world.

Duke University Hospital is nationally ranked in 10 adult specialties
Consistently Ranked Among the Nation’s Best Hospitals
In addition, Duke University Hospital is proud to be named the best hospital in North Carolina, and nationally ranked in 10 adult and 9 pediatric specialties by U.S. News & World Report for 2019–2020.