Need Breast ReductionWhat Can I Do?

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by LostHearts, Jan 1, 2007.

  1. LostHearts

    LostHearts New Member

    Please, if anyone has any knowledge or experience with this, your suggestions or thoughts would be of great assistance.

    I have always been "top heavy", maturing so early that kids in grammar school kept telling me that I must be much older then I state and was held back in schooling because I developed chest bumps so early. Growing up, I received many unwelcome taunts that did nothing to help my self-esteem.

    To make a long story short, I had a breast reduction in 1980. However, in the ensuing years, I developed RSD which also was responsible for my fibro as well. I know that I've experienced weight gain so common to many of us, but after menopause instead of getting smaller, my breasts have become huge. A few years ago a cosmetic surgeon told me that in rare cases, some women experience an increase in size due to more fat deposits.

    A reduction has become a must for me. Besides the usual effects of being top heavy, they greatly inhibit my ability to do the exercises I so desperately need to do. Since wearing a bra is impossible due to my allodynia, the pull on my back muscles is unbelievable. There are hygiene problems as well. I was really into fashion and having fun with clothes, but now my top portion is 2 sizes more then my bottom, and a lot of the fun clothes I love aren't even made big enough to fit me now. All my beautiful velvet tops, coats etc. are rotting away in the closet.

    It seems doctors frown on me having this done, but they don't have to live with it on a daily basis. Yes, a reduction may increase my pain, but that is only a theory. What I am contending with, physically, mentally, self-esteem wise, is a reality. I am more then willing to take the risk of surgery. My posture is terrible and my back muscles are constantly being painfully stretched on a daily basis. It is a layer of pain added on to those already existing because of my conditions.

    Has anyone had this done, and if so, what was the outcome? Also is anyone else thinking about the issue of cosmetic surgery, either reduction or enlargement?

    This is making me so very depressed. My whole physical appearance is altered due to this problem. I look at the beautiful clothes I was able to wear and simply cry.

    Thanks for reading this long post.


    P.S. Many thanks to those who answered me about my heart problems. The doctor believes it is due to severe mental and physical stress, but there are a few tests that still need to be done.
  2. Slayadragon

    Slayadragon New Member

    I've concluded that I am going to resist any surgical interventions of any kind and do my very best to avoid any injuries. My poor system can't take it.

    People with fibro undoubtedly aren't as fragile, though. If it helps you to do exercises and allows you better posture (plus improves your feelings about yourself), it might be worth it.

    I'd consider looking into human growth hormone (the real stuff) to assist in the healing process. The one time I used it for that, it did wonders. Although hgh is too expensive for ordinary use, a short period of time on it after the surgery might be a great help.

    Try looking at "Natural Hormone Balance for Women" by Uzzi Reiss, M.D., for a little more basic info on this.
  3. LostHearts

    LostHearts New Member

    I too don't understand about some women wanting to be made so large. Though there was a case where a woman I knew was really very small, barely an A cup. For her the implants made her look fine; she didn't go overboard and really looked great.

    Of course, implants will not be likely to produce the problems that arise from naturally heavy breasts, as they do not weigh anywhere near normal tissue. I feel like two heavy melons are strapped to my ribcase.

    It's trying to convince a doctor to do the surgery. But I think the benefits far outweigh the risks. Been on a number of websites and although there are complications (as with any surgery), most women are very pleased. Not only do they report a reduction in upper body pain, but all of them began to exercise and have reaped all the benefits, both weight wise and cardio wise, that regular exercise brings.

    The hardest part would be wearing the surgical bra for a time afterward. But I'll keep my eye on the goal. This is one physical problem I have that there is a "cure" for. That itself is encouraging.
  4. kriket

    kriket New Member

    I had breast reduction surgery done about 2 yrs. ago and it was one of the best things I ever did. I was very self-conscience and clothes just did not fit or look right. They removed about 5 lbs. from both combined. I feel so much better after the reduction.

    I know a girl that had it done and is having the same problem as you are. Her breasts are all of a sudden getting big again. This is a scary thought. I was in surgery about 4 hrs. I would never take it back though. Sounds as though you are very miserable, and the surgery may need to be done again.

    Glad that you went to the doctor and discussed your heart problem and are finding out what the problem is. Good ole stress, it's wonderful isn't it? Hugs!!

  5. LostHearts

    LostHearts New Member

    Did you have Fibro and/or other conditions at the time of your surgery? Did your doc take any extra precautions? I've heard that there are certain things, such as injecting lidocaine just belong the skin surface where the incisions are to be made in order to deaden the nerves so they don't know what's happening!

    I've waited so long to have the surgery that the doctor I had chosen has retired. She was great--she worked with her husband. He would do one side while she worked on the other, thus cutting the surgical time in half. He is still in business as far as I know, but she retired 2 years ago. She was a great woman. She must have weighed about 220 or more, and she understood how heavy women felt and the image problem they had. (I am not near that weight, but can appreciate her caring about more obese women.)

    Some doctors urge women to try and lose weight first before opting for surgery. But not her. She said that patients probably already tried everything and knew the difficulties of exercising with all that extra weight around the ribs. Since I had previous surgery, she was going to do a partial reduction, basically a breast lift and then removing all the excess tissue in a circle around the areola.

    Now I must begin another search. I'll start with her hubby; hopefully he follows the same philosophy as she did.

    Thanks for the encouragement.
  6. kriket

    kriket New Member

    I did have fibro. when I had my surgery, or I had already been dx with it about 2 years before my surgery. If you liked the lady that worked on you before, but she has retired, I would go back to her husband, especially since they were partners. That's nice that they were able to cut the surgery time in half for patients.

    As for the lidocaine, I'm not sure. All I remember is them injecting something into my I.V. to relax me, cause I was so nervous, then, a few min. later they gave me the major knock out sruff. I remember waving bye bye to my boyfriend as they were taking me to surgery and that's all I remember. Then I remember them waking me. I was in a lot of pain, but they gave me something immediately after I woke up through the I.V. and it stopped it.

    I recovered fairly quickly. I was up doing things, just not reaching or lifting for things in about a week and a half to 2 weeks.

    I don't think the surgery has made my fibro. worse, but we are all different.

    Good Luck with your final decision. You had better get in to her husband "before" he retires!!!!! LOL

    The doctor that did my surgery told me that fibro. was a wastebasket term, so he did nothing in order to take precautions. If looks could have killed when he told me that, he would have fell dead!!!!!!!!!

    [This Message was Edited on 01/02/2007]
  7. prabun29

    prabun29 New Member

    I had my breast reduced last year and the only complication was the right side would not heal along the scar. I went back and had it redone with no problems. I have CFS/FM/Heart and other problems, the only recommendation I have is that the doctor give you enough antibotes for healing. I live in Georgia and had no problem getting insurance and the doctor to do it.
  8. Adl123

    Adl123 New Member

    Dear Sharon,
    How I feel for you! I, too, had a breast reduction, and like you, my fibro got worse.

    However, I'm still glad I had it done. I was getting arthritis spurrs on my shoulders, and the bones of my neck and back are a mess. Still,I'm grateful every day, that I had it done.

    It was the general anesthesia that did me in. Is there a way a doctor would do it without that kind of anesthesia? And by the way, Acupuncture has aomost totally eliminated my Fibro pain. I still hve CFIDS pain, but that awful, raw, Fibro pain in in remission.

    Good luck with whatever you decide. Please keep us posted. If you decide on surgery, let us know so we can support you, and pray for a successful outcome.

  9. LostHearts

    LostHearts New Member

    Just some more notes: I did not develop anything from having a breast reduction many years ago. In fact, it was great! My conditions developed due to a botched surgery involving the severing of my right sensory radial nerve at the wrist--damage to sensory nerves has now been proven to be one of the leading causes of RSD. The fibro developed as a complication related to the RSD, which was its trigger, along with a whole bunch of stress--years and years of it on a daily basis. Almost like having to live in a war zone :(

    So I see that someone else's breasts actually got bigger after menopause as well. We are certainly in the minority, as usually the breasts shrink as time goes on. Huge breasts run in my family. On my father's side, I realize that most of the women were pretty big on top. On my mother's side, they were all mostly B cups. Breast size is largely determined by heredity.

    I've thought of this list:

    NEGATIVES: Exacerbation of RSD & Fibro; need to wear surgical bra for some time period after surgery.

    POSITIVES: Some reduction in upper body pain (I do not labor under the delusion that my upper body will be pain free. It's just that one layer of pain would be removed. Also the muscles that are now constantly being painfully stretched can begin to return to normal position.

    Posture improves.

    Able to exercise better, more often, and more productively. Great benefit to cardio-vascular system. Might even help clear some fibro fog due to increased oxygen to brain.

    Daily movements such as reaching and stretching improved.

    No longer having to smell the stench (sorry about this) that wafts up to my nose all day. Even if I wear cream or powder underneath the breasts, the powder cakes and the cream gets all greasy. The skin under my breasts is actually shiny from having to daily clean it over a period of many years.

    Huge increase in perception of self-image and self-esteem.

    Ability to wear a lot of my favorite clothes now just socked away. Ability to buy all the nice lovely tops out there which now aren't even made in my size. Larger sizes don't carry a lot of the Edwardian or Gothic type of clothing I love. (industry standard is a maximum 38C for clothing; what it considers "average").

    Not having to spend 30 minutes or more trying to find a top that not only fits me but doesn't make me look like a cow when I go out in public.

    No longer get stares because my big boobs are hanging down without benefit of a bra.

    Ben Franklin's favorite practice when considering anything was to take a page, put a line down the middle and list the pros on one side and the cons on the other. Then he would try to make a decision based on that paper. This is what I have tried to do here.

    Seriously, it is depressing me a LOT, especially since I was so active before. It's the frying pan or fire--try to exercise to lose weight and maybe reduce the breasts. But exercise is made extra painful by being so top heavy. :(

    Again, thanks everybody.

  10. Leenerbups

    Leenerbups New Member

    Hello, I did this in 2001 and I wish I had done it YEARS AGO.

    I had many of the same problems you did.It was one of the best things I ever did for myself.

    I had FMS/CFS with it and it helped tremendously. I felt an immediate difference as soon as I woke up.

    Just ask me anything you want and I'll answer it.
    [This Message was Edited on 01/04/2007]

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