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Would a breast reduction solve tightness in the shoulders?

Q:

I'm 20 years old, 5 ft. 7 inches tall and wear a bra size 36DDD.  Recently I have been getting horrible head aches to the extent that I can't even function.  My primary care physician attributes this to muscle tightness starting in my shoulders, most likely being caused by the pulling on my shoulders from my large breasts.  Do you agree and would a breast reduction solve this problem?

A:

Depending on how much breast tissue would be removed, it is possible that your symptoms of muscle tightness and shoulder pain would improve with breast reduction surgery.  However, there is no guarantee that the head aches stem from the weightiness of your breasts.  Speak with a board certified plastic surgeon in your area for expert advice on this matter.  Patients that undergo reduction mammoplasty are generally very gratified after surgery, but it is important that surgery is done for the right reasons.

A:

Breast Reduction to reduce Headaches.

Large breasts can cause headaches by causing spasm of the trapezius muscles that attach to the back of the skull.  If this is the case, then a breast reduction will alleviate the symptoms. Concentrate on exactly how the headaches start and where the pain is before seeing a Plastic Surgeon so you can adequately explain your symptoms. This will allow him/her to determine if your headaches are, indeed, due to your breasts or something else.

A:

It sounds like you are an excellent candidate for a breast reduction.  This should significantly help with your symptoms. I have been performing breast reductions at a younger age now because of these benefits.  I usually do this as an outpatient.  Insurance should help cover your surgery expenses which we usually pre-authorize for.  You would need to stay in our area for about 5 days at least.

Edward J. Domanskis, M.D., FACS - View Other Answers by this Doctor
Newport Beach, CA

A:

Large breasts that are disproportionate may cause problems (but are not limited to) such as headaches, neck pain, shoulder pain, and back pain.  Often women use pain relief medicines such as Tylenol or Motrin, visit a physical therapist, or a chiropractor to relieve themselves of these pains. 

Plastic surgeons see many patients who are referred by their primary care giver, or their specialist doctors, to see if a breast reduction may help relieve them of their aches and pains.

Sometimes women are in a "catch 22" situation because they would like to take a run but are unable to exercise due to the weight of their breasts.

Breast reduction may help with your aches, and you should definitely talk to your primary care giver for a referral to a board certified plastic surgeon.  Under the right circumstances, insurance may cover your breast reduction.

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