The choice to undergo a breast reduction compared to other elective surgeries is differentiated simply by the fact that it’s often associated with a medical condition or discomfort rather than vanity. Women considering breast reduction are typically driven by physical discomfort due to large or heavy breasts, such as back pain, neck strain, skin rashes, difficulty fitting into clothes, and unwanted attention.
For that reason, we’ve created this article to help women like yourself who are looking for answers to how much breast reductions cost; and weed out the wide range of estimates you likely stumbled across in the process.
Continue reading for a breakdown of the factors contributing to the cost of a breast reduction to provide you with a realistic view of what to expect when weighing the costs and benefits of surgery.
When debating whether to have breast reduction surgery, there are a variety of factors to consider when deciding, but above all else, the price tag tends to be at the forefront of our mind. According to American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), the national average cost of for breast reduction is $5,631.
However, it’s important to note that this cost can vary dramatically from one patient to another and often does not include other surgery-related expenses. Generally, the major costs that factor into your total are the surgeon’s fee, facility fee, anesthesia fee, post-surgery fees and cost of implants.
After calculating the additional expenses including the surgeon, anesthesia, and operating facility fees, that are often overlooked, the cost of a breast reduction can range from $8,900 - $12,000 (if not more).
But ultimately, the total cost will depend on a variety of factors:
All surgeons have their own approach for performing breast reductions, based on different amenities at their disposal, experience level, and accreditations. Surgeon selection is a critical piece of the puzzle, especially when it comes to influencing the cost of surgery.
It's important to choose a plastic surgeon certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS) with extensive experience in all types of breast surgery. Board certification may not always guarantee the best results; however, it does require rigorous education and surgical training to improve the odds of a successful outcome. Certification type is also important; there are over 150 self-designated boards but only a handful recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS).
At Austin-Weston, our four board-certified plastic surgeons have accumulated a combined 75 years of experience, and with that have cultivated an excellent reputation in the DC Metro Area and surrounding community. Each surgery is preceded by an extensive consultation appointment and the expert-eye of our surgeons to create life-changing results.
As with most procedures, the cost for a breast reduction will depend on the scope of the surgery required and according to the individual, their areas of concerns and expectations. Patients with extremely large, oversized breasts require a more extensive surgery in order remove excess tissue and to reposition and reshape the nipple, which can increase the cost of the procedure. Each breast reduction surgery procedure is unique, so addressing cost can be premature until a surgeon has examined the breasts and develops a surgical plan tailored for each patient.
This is an important factor to consider not only because of overall cost but because it may put a price tag on the importance of your safety and satisfaction. The importance of having your procedure performed in an accredited surgical facility by qualified staff is critical in the decision-making process. Do not try to cut costs by sacrificing safety and having your procedure performed at a non-accredited practice or surgeon who is not certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS).
The Austin-Weston Center is a free-standing surgery facility located in Reston, Virginia, equipped with five surgical suites and certified by the Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care (AAAHC). Our surgeons are board-certified in plastic surgery, our Certified Nurse Anesthetists (CRNAs) are nationally certified by the Council on Certification of Nurse Anesthetists, and all personnel is licensed and certified in Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS).
You should ask the surgeon directly if these are all the costs involved in your estimate. Since there are no set costs for any of these expenses, it is important to explore multiple options by meeting with several surgeons and getting estimates for not only their surgeon fees but also the additional surgical-related expenses.
When estimating the cost of a breast reduction, always account for additional surgery-related expenses:
- Anesthesia Fees
- Post-Surgery Garments
- Prescription Medications
Anesthesia costs for breast reductions vary considerably. If anesthesia is administered by a board-certified Anesthesiologist the cost will be higher. With a CRNA (or Nurse Anesthetist), on the other hand, the price is lower. Another factor for lower costs is using a non-certified anesthetist nurse, or medical assistant to deliver the anesthetic drugs (and yes, this happens). Anesthesia fees are incurred hourly, so if the surgeon has a meticulous technique causing them to operate at a slow pace, the price will increase in conjunction with speed.
When researching procedure, it’s important to consider geographic location instead of the national average when it comes to calculating the cost. The fly in the ointment is that the total cost varies widely among regions, with plastic surgery hotspots like Manhattan, Beverly Hills, Miami and Los Angeles at the higher end of the spectrum. In comparison, lightly populated areas, such as the Mid-West, will have much lower costs.
The reason plastic surgery costs vary geographically, like major urban centers, is typically due to higher overhead costs for surgeons in these areas. The first step in considering the price is to assess costs based on your location and the cost of living is in that area. To get ballpark prices for procedures in your area, use the Healthcare Blue Book (works the same as Kelley Blue Book for car prices).
Considerations Aside from Cost
While cost will always be a factor, it should not be the only reason for selecting one plastic surgeon or practice over another. There are several other factors to consider:
- Experienced in Performing Procedure
- Former Patient Ratings and Reviews
- Emotional Connection with Surgeon
Payment and Financing
Since breast reduction surgery is often performed for medical and non-cosmetic reasons, the procedure can occasionally be covered by your insurance policy. To confirm, contact your insurance provider to find out if all or part of the procedure is covered. For procedures not covered by insurance, or if a portion of the procedure is not covered, most plastic surgeons offer monthly payment plans and financing options if a patient is interested in taking that route.
When the time comes and you’re ready to take the leap, it sometimes becomes necessary to look at the benefits of financing your procedure. Almost all practices accept credit cards but patients should carefully consider the interest rates associated with all available options. There are also several third-party financing companies that deal exclusively with patients interested in treatments not covered by insurance.
Don’t Cut Quality Corners
Choosing a well-qualified, board-certified plastic surgeon and asking the right questions will increase your chances of getting the most favorable return on investment and the ultimate cosmetic surgery goal… an investment in the best version of yourself.
Real Patients, Life-Changing Results
Visit our before-and-after gallery to view photos of real patients that have undergone breast reduction surgery; click here to see the dramatic transformations and life-changing results.
The Austin-Weston Center has been in practice for almost 40 years during which we’ve performed countless breast reductions, enabling women to live their lives in a body they love. To learn more about procedure options, call (703) 854-9841 to schedule a consultation.