An accomplished surgeon, Dr. Grace Valina holds board certification in general surgery through the American Board of Facial Surgery and in facial cosmetic surgery through the American Board of Facial Cosmetic Surgery Dr. Grace Valina recently shared her insights into breast reduction surgery recovery process.
Dr. Grace Valina’s Credentials and Expertise
After graduating from medical school at the University of Sint Eustatius, Dr. Grace Valina completed residencies in general surgery at both Michigan State University and Loyola University Medical Center. She subsequently worked for many years performing trauma surgery for people from underserved communities and volunteering for overseas medical missions.
Ultimately deciding to specialize in cosmetic surgery, Dr. Grace Valina undertook a minimally invasive surgery fellowship through Allegheny Health Network and cosmetic surgery fellowship through the American Academy of Cosmetic Surgery. She also trained under several different respected leaders in the fields of cosmetic, plastic, and oculoplastic surgery.
Dr. Grace Valina has a cultivated eye for aesthetics that has earned her accolades as a cosmetic surgeon as well as a fine arts painter, drafter, and mixed media creator. Her areas of surgical expertise include facelifts, neck lifts, liposuction, fat grafting, abdominoplasties, blepharoplasty, gynecomastia, and labiaplasties, as well as breast augmentations, lifts, and reductions.
Breast Reduction Surgery Recovery
Also known as reduction mammaplasty, breast reduction is a procedure that surgically removes targeted breast tissue and skin in order to reduce the overall size of the breast. The surgery also generally reshapes and lifts the breast and may and may reduce the size of the areola (the dark pigmented area on the skin around the nipple).
Although most surgeons perform breast reductions on an outpatient basis and the entire procedure typically takes two to three hours to complete, postoperative recovery can take as long as one to two weeks. Immediately after surgery, patients tend to feel acutely sore and physically weak.
As the swelling from the surgery decreases, so will the severity of your pain and fatigue. Some patients also feel sensations of stretching, pulling, and fluid movement throughout the breast area. These symptoms also fade over time.
Breast reduction surgery can also cause a loss of the normal sensation in your breast. Over time, some or all of these feelings may come back.
The Steps and Stages of Postoperative Care
Although you should get on your feet and move around immediately after breast reduction surgery, you should refrain from any strenuous activity or lifting for at least two weeks or so. You may also require pain medication for a few days or so.
Another good way to deal with pain, as well as swelling, is applying ice or cold packs but only for the first 2 days after the surgery. Doctors recommend regular icing of the surgical area 4 times per day for two days following the procedure. You may have one or more drains near your incision that you will need to handle according to doctor recommendations.
You can expect your drain or steristrips to be removed roughly a week after surgery. It is recommended not to get your incisions wet (eg, shower) for the first 48 hours from surgery. After 2 days from surgery, you may shower., but you should refrain from taking a bath or soaking in a hot tub for roughly four weeks.