Breast reduction is the removal of excess skin and breast tissue with re-positioning of the nipple to a higher situation. It is most frequently performed for heavy breasts that results in physical problems, rather than for cosmetic appearance. The surgery is performed under general anaesthesia. There are different techniques depending on how big the breasts are and how much tissue needs to be removed.

The surgery is performed with pre-operative marks as guidelines. In moderate size breasts the nipple is left attached to underlying breast tissue, excess skin and breast tissue is removed and then the nipple is placed in a new higher position. The remaining skin and breast tissue is sutured together.

The types of scars that commonly arise are, a scar that goes around the nipple at its new position and a scar that extends from the new nipple position downward underneath the breast. In bigger breasts, there is often a scar that goes underneath the breast from the midline to the side. Drains are usually required and a supportive dressing is placed after surgery.