We're discussing risks of breast reduction surgery. In general, there are four main risks that I want to discuss involving breast reduction surgery. The first is infection; the second bleeding; the third wound- healing problems;and the fourth are issues related to the nipple.
Infection is possible in any surgical procedure. Whenever you make an incision on the skin, there is the possibility of infection. We commonly give patients antibiotics in order to help prevent infections.
Bleeding is also a possibility. There are many blood vessels in the breast, and it's important that your surgeon takes the time to stop any bleeding that's seen during the course of the surgery.
Wound-healing problems are common any time multiple incisions are made. When removing breast tissue and restructuring the breast so it takes on a more youthful and aesthetically attractive appearance, many incisions are made. When you make incisions, there is the possibility of wound-healing problems. Generally, if these occur in breast reduction surgery, there will be small open wounds for a small period of time, and they tend to heal on their own by keeping them clean and by placing a little bit of antibiotic ointment on them.
The final, and arguably the most serious complication of breast reduction surgery, are risks involving the nipple. Again, when restructuring the breast we cut a significant number of blood vessels which, especially in high-risk populations like smokers, can cause nipple-related complications. There's a possibility that the entire nipple could not survive, in which case we would have to reconstruct the nipple and make a new nipple. There's also the possibility that nipple sensation can be affected as well.
Those are the four main complications of breast reduction surgery.