Will A Breast Lift Alleviate Back Pain?

By: Dr. Sean Kelishadi, M.D. FACS


For many women, sagging breasts and chronic back pain may seem to go hand in hand. In an attempt to get relief from their symptoms, it is only natural for these women to wonder whether or not a breast lift can help. However, you may be surprised to learn the answer.

Board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Sean Kelishadi of SSK Plastic Surgery in Newport Beach, CA is dedicated to improving his patient’s lives both in terms of their outer appearance as well as their physical and mental well-being. Correcting droopy and/or overly large or heavy breasts through a breast lift, breast reduction, or a combination of the two can be a fantastic solution for relieving pain, enhancing a woman’s appearance, and improving her quality of life. Read on to find out more about your options for eliminating chronic pain associated with your breasts.

Can my breasts be causing neck and back pain?

Excessively large, heavy, or drooping breasts can often be the culprit of aches, pains, and other symptoms around the body. Some of the most common complaints from women with large, sagging breasts include:

  • Back pain
  • Neck pain
  • Stiff neck
  • Shoulder pain
  • Numbness or tingling in the arms and hands
  • Loss of sensation in the nipple
  • Skin rash/infection
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Difficulty with physical activity
  • Emotional distress (embarrassment and lack of confidence)

While it may be hard to believe that something as seemingly harmless as having large breasts can cause so many problematic symptoms, it actually makes sense. The weight of a woman’s large breasts can be similar to wearing a weighted vest 24 hours a day, causing poor posture and putting intense pressure on her back, neck, and shoulders. When you think of it this way, it is much easier to understand how various aches and pains can be related to your breasts. This phenomenon is known as macromastia.

Now that you know it may indeed be the size and position of your breasts that is causing your symptoms, the next step is to find a solution. During your one-on-one consultation at SSK Plastic Surgery, Dr. Sean Kelishadi will take ample time to evaluate your case, listen to your concerns, answer your questions fully, and explain all of your options in detail before recommending a surgical treatment plan that best fits your needs.

Can a breast lift help with my back pain?

Yes and no. While the position of your breasts can certainly play a role in some of your symptoms, a breast lift on its own my not always be enough to give you significant relief. In many cases, particularly when a patient’s breasts are large, heavy, or out of proportion with her frame, Dr. Kelishadi may recommend a breast reduction as an ideal solution.

What is a breast lift?

Formally known as a mastopexy, a breast lift is a surgical procedure that involves the removal of excess skin to help reposition the breasts and give patients a more youthful, perky contour. A breast lift can be highly beneficial for women who have sagging or drooping breasts due to pregnancy, childbirth, weight loss, or the aging process alone.

What is a breast reduction?

Similar to a breast lift, a breast reduction is also able to achieve a more appealing position of the breasts through excision of excess skin. However, the primary purpose of a breast reduction is to reduce the amount of a woman’s native breast tissue in order to give her a more proportionate figure and relieve frustrating symptoms, such as back and neck pain.

What can I expect from a breast reduction?

Dr. Kelishadi will work closely with you to put together a custom surgical plan tailored to your goals and needs. In general, a breast reduction can be performed as an outpatient procedure and takes about 2-3 hours. During the surgery, Dr. Kelishadi will make his incisions strategically, so that the resulting scars can be camouflaged as much as possible. The excess skin and tissue will be removed, and the incisions will be closed with dissolvable sutures, which work from the inside. Steri-strips will be applied over your wounds, and you will be wheeled to the recovery room to wake up from anesthesia.

Following a breast reduction, it is normal for patients to experience some level of discomfort, swelling, and bruising. Dr. Kelishadi will give you written and oral postoperative instructions, and it is imperative that you follow these closely and completely. This includes taking any prescribed medications and refraining from certain physical activities. Most patients are able to return to work in 7-10 days, but heavy lifting and exercise should be avoided for at least 4-6 weeks. Once the initial pain and swelling have subsided, you should notice a drastic improvement in the discomfort your once-large breasts caused, and you will be able to begin enjoying your newly elevated contour.

How can I get started with a breast reduction in Orange County?

If you are interested in getting relief from your back pain with a breast reduction or breast lift, the first step is to be evaluated by qualified, certified, and experienced plastic surgeon. Call the convenient Newport Beach office of SSK Plastic Surgery to schedule your consultation with Dr. Kelishadi today, and take the first step toward being pain-free and regaining your confidence with a breast reduction!

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.