Breast Asymmetry is the technical term for noticeably different breast volumes or breast sizes between the left and right breast. Asymmetry of the breasts is actually quite common. They are ‘sisters, not twins’ and differences between the breasts are often a matter of degree. Tests and imaging scans to help assess how uneven your breasts are in terms of volume and tissue composition. These include MRI scans of the breasts.
Slight Breast Asymmetry is Normal
As mentioned above, breasts are sisters, not twins. And natural asymmetry can vary from hardly noticeable to very noticeable differences in breast volume. Typically, uneven breasts and nipples are minor enough to not interfere with day to day life. This includes clothes shopping and finding a well fitting bra. But for some, having uneven breast sizes, nipples or glandular tissue volumes can cause significant discomfort.
- If you’re concerned about having uneven breasts,
- understand that corrective breast augmentation surgery for asymmetric breast may be helpful.
Then continue reading how uneven breasts impacts your surgery for enlargement or reduction of the breasts (breast lifts also can adjust for uneven nipples or severe volumetric differences in breast size).
Can You Correct Severely Uneven Breasts through Breast Augmentation, Breast Lift or a Breast Reduction?
Having different breast sizes (uneven breasts) can lead women to consider corrective breast surgery. Surgery can help reduce the differences in the right and left breast tissues. It can also even up the nipple shapes and sizes so the breasts look more similar.
Corrective surgery may involve breast augmentation, breast lift (unilateral or on both sides), a reduction procedure or a combination of surgical approaches. Additional breast liposuction is also sometimes an option for selected patients. Many women live comfortably with slightly uneven breast sizes or breast shapes. Others choose plastic surgery to even up the sizes of the breasts.
Surgical Correction for Uneven Breasts
The good news is that there are several corrective plastic surgery options for asymmetric breasts that can help. These include breast augmentation, breast reduction or breast lift surgery. Indeed, some women decide to have surgery to even up their breast tissues. That’s often because they feel uncomfortable with the appearance of their breasts, or find they struggle with the practical issues of having very different, mismatched breast sizes (such as difficulty finding a suitable bra).
Many choose corrective surgery for asymmetric breasts because:
- Having different sized breasts on each side of the chest wall can limit what a person feels comfortable – or able – to wear
- Uneven breasts or nipples can leave individuals unable to find a comfortable bra that fits their body – and breasts – in a supportive way
- It may be obvious that you have very different sized breasts, or different breast shapes or nipple locations, no matter what you wear
- Some women feel self-conscious in intimate settings where one breast is noticeably very larger than the other breast
Breast Surgery Procedures to correct for Asymmetry of the Breasts and Nipples
Dr Rubinstein is especially known for his extensive surgical experience in correcting asymmetric breasts. Sometimes surgery involves a breast augmentation mastopexy (breast implants with a breast lift), as seen in the before and after breast surgery image below.
For other patients, a breast lift alone or a breast reduction without additional augmentation is sufficient to even up the breasts. It really depends on the patient.
Breast Asymmetry Surgeon, Dr Craig Rubinstein
In these scenarios, a specialist plastic surgeon can help. Dr Craig Rubinstein is one such specialist, with a surgical focus on corrective surgery for breast asymmetry. In fact, he wrote the “Asymmetry Breast Surgery” chapter in the Plastic Surgery Medical Textbook. If you have uneven breasts, you may choose breast surgery to even up your breasts. Dr Rubinstein is highly regarded for his knowledge of in corrective surgery to even up different sized breasts, as well as breast lift surgery, breast augmentation, and breast reduction/liposuction shaping procedures.
To find out your surgery options for balancing out your breast sizes or reducing breast sagging that is more pronounced on one side of the chest area than the other side, you’ll want to schedule a consultation with Dr Craig Rubinstein, in Melbourne.
Surgical Protocols For Treating Asymmetric Breasts
In Chapter 36 of the Plastic Surgery Medical Text Book, Dr Craig Rubinstein explains that:
The majority of asymmetry in breasts is not overly noticeable. And many women are unconcerned about the minor differences in breast volumes or nipple shape an location
- However, significant breast size asymmetry is usually obvious
That noted, less significant breast volume differences (breast area asymmetries) may still be a concern for breast augmentation or reduction patients
- Asymmetries that may need attention during breast augmentation surgery include breast shape differences, uneven nipple positioning and significant differences in nipple size, shape or colour as well as differing volumes or tissue distributions in the breast area
Breast asymmetry, even while being common, may be distressing to some patients, or cause practical issues in terms of fashions, swimwear, exercising or bra shopping
- All components of the breast – including asymmetry – should be carefully assessed prior to any and all breast surgery, especially if an augmentation using breast implants is being planned. If a Surgeon and patient fail to take into account breast and nipple shape/size differences, some of the asymmetry may appear more amplified, rather than reduced, after having augmentation surgery. Communication about potential surgery results is crucial for patient satisfaction (so is having realistic expectations about what surgery can, and cannot, accomplish).
Breast asymmetries are often complex conditions
- There are rarely optimal simple solutions, and these types of corrective and reconstructive breast surgery should only be performed by an expert Plastic Surgeon, with the proper training, credentials and hospital operating privileges.
Most corrections of breast and nipple asymmetry involve a number of sophisticated surgical techniques as well as compromises. Each patient should be well informed of what’s involved, and communication between the Surgeon and patient is crucial for getting a satisfying result of reduction of asymmetry.
Careful surgical planning requires appreciation of all of the asymmetries of the breast area. Correcting one type of breast or nipple asymmetry may inadvertently exacerbate other asymmetries. Again, the skill of the Surgeon – their training and experience – is key.
Patients should recognise that correction of major breast asymmetry may require more than one breast surgery. This can be due to multiple corrections required or because both breasts can change differently with time.
Excerpts from Dr Rubinstein’s Chapter on Breast Asymmetry:
- It is sometimes possible to effectively correct a relatively mild size asymmetry with symmetric breast implants [such as Motiva breast implants or Mentor breast implants].
- This surgery means that increasing the size of each side, decreases the relative difference between the two breasts
- To understand this mathematically, a 200 cc breast is 100 cc bigger than a 100 cc breast. But 200/100 cc = 2× bigger or a 100% difference
- If both breasts receive 400 cc implants there is still a 100 cc difference. But now the larger is 200 + 400 cc = 600 cc the smaller is 100 + 400 cc = 500 cc and 600/500 cc = 1.2× bigger or a 20% difference
- Unfortunately while theoretically valid, in practice the result may not be satisfactory
- Small asymmetric breasts may not be very noticeable. However as the breasts themselves become more obvious the perceived asymmetry becomes more obvious
- With larger breasts, asymmetry and size differences may be more distressing than for smaller breast sizes.
- Asymmetry in a high breast volume patient may be harder to mask or hide with padding, bras or loose-fitting clothing.
- Where the asymmetry is more severe (generally greater than 90–120 cc), asymmetric implants alone may not be appropriate. This is due to exacerbation of other asymmetries and may require additional surgical procedures
You can also read more about Asymmetry of the breasts at the Surgery Procedure Page.
Please Contact Dr.Rubinstein’s office to book a consultation or enquire about further information regarding plastic surgery procedures.
Dr. Craig Rubinstein’s affiliations include: