Posted by Dr Chris Porter on Mar 17, 2018
What is Breast Asymmetry?
Breast asymmetry is when one breast is different in size and/or shape to the opposite side. It is rare for women to have perfectly symmetric breasts and the majority of women have breast asymmetry.
What Causes Breast Asymmetry?
The majority of breast asymmetry occurs during breast development in puberty. Asymmetry can also occur after breast cancer surgery and/or radiotherapy where a portion of the breast is removed for the cancer treatment. Asymmetry can also occur after pregnancy or breastfeeding when one breast may have produced more milk from lactation than the opposite breast.
When Can Breast Asymmetry be Corrected?
Not all breast asymmetry needs to be corrected, subtle shape or size differences are normal and accepted by most women. If the difference between the two breasts is significant then surgical correction can be considered. To be obvious and concerning to the patient the breast asymmetry may only be half a cup size difference or greater in small breasts or at least one cup size in larger breasts.
How Can Breast Asymmetry be Corrected?
Depending on patient desires and characteristics then there are a number of surgical options available. It is possible to treat only one breast, for example the smaller breast can be augmented or the larger breast reduced to gain volume symmetry. If both breasts are to be treated then:
- both could be augmented with different size implants to gain volume symmetry.
- both could be reduced with different volume reductions to gain volume symmetry.
- one breast could be augmented and the other reduced to gain a new breast size intermediate between the two asymmetric breast sizes.
- if there is a significant shape asymmetry then a lift can be added to either the augmentation or the lift to optimise the breast shape as well as the breast volume.
Every patient is different in their desires and these need to be well matched to their physical characteristics and the surgical options mentioned above. I would advise you to seek a consultation with a plastic surgeon experienced in breast surgery, they will guide you through your options to get the best possible breast symmetry.