Breast Reduction

A reduction mammaplasty, more commonly known as a breast reduction, is a procedure used to remove excess skin, fat, and tissue from the breasts in order to decrease their size.


A Breast Reduction procedure is most often performed to create a breast size more proportionate to the rest of the body, and/or ease the pain and discomfort that can accompany excessively large breasts.

Carrying excessively large breasts can cause discomfort in the shoulders, back, neck, chest, and other upper body areas. This discomfort can become burdensome, making it difficult to perform your daily physical activities. Independent of physical pain, a breast reduction procedure can work to alleviate the emotional distress that excessively large breast can create.

If you have excessively large breasts that are causing pain or general discomfort, self-image concerns, emotional or other health problems, or difficulty performing regular physical activities, you may be a good candidate for a breast reduction procedure. Others have also complained of unintentional side effects of carrying excessively large breasts. These can include skin irritation or rashes underneath the breast crease (caused from the increased weight of the breast) and indentations in the shoulders (caused from the weight of the breast pulling down on their bra straps).

To learn more and help decide if a breast reduction is a potential course of action, schedule a consultation with Dr. Kuhlman-Wood, a board-certified Plastic Surgeon. This will allow you to share your specific concerns and receive informed answers to your individual questions. Please note that to be recommended for a breast reduction procedure, you will have to be physically healthy.

If you are a smoker, you will be required to quit for at least four (4) weeks prior to surgery and remain smoke free until your surgical results have been fully achieved. Smoking has been proven to interfere with the body’s naturally healing process. For your safety and to achieve the desired surgical outcome, Dr. Kuhlman-Wood screens for Nicotine prior to surgery.

During your initial consultation with Dr. Kuhlman-Wood, be prepared to discuss the following:
  • Why you want a Breast Reduction
  • What are your expectations
  • What are your desired outcomes. Please be aware that desired outcomes beyond the physical quality of your breast may also be discussed.
  • Your previous Medical conditions, drug allergies, and medical treatments.
  • Your Current medications, vitamins, herbal supplements, alcohol, tobacco, and drug use.
  • Dr. Kuhlman-Wood will ask about your Family history of breast cancer and results of any mammograms or previous biopsies.
  • Any Dramatic changes in weight, if it applies.
  • Any Major social changes, such as divorces, deaths in your family, or new relationships.

Schedule Your Breast Reduction Consultation

In addition to a meaningful discussion, Dr. Kuhlman-Wood will more than likely discuss and do the following:
  • Evaluate your general health status and any pre-existing health conditions or risk factors.
  • If applicable, and with your written consent, take photographs for "Before & After" comparisons.
  • Discuss your plastic surgery options and recommend a course of treatment, including non-surgical options that may be available.
  • Discuss likely outcomes as-well-as any risks or potential complications.

At Coeur d’Alene Plastic Surgery™, our entire staff is committed to providing a frictionless surgical experience. It begins with listening to your needs and continues through appropriate education and care across your entire surgical experience. This includes providing you the care you need while you recover.

Where will my Breast Reduction be performed?

Dr. Kuhlman-Wood performs all Breast Reduction Procedures at either Northwest Specialty Hospital or PleasantView Surgery Center. Both facilities are Doctor-owned facilities and have impeccable records of patient success and satisfaction. Factors such as schedule availability, procedural complexity and your individual needs will determine the location of your procedure.

What should I expect on the day of Surgery?

On the day of your procedure, you will check in at the front desk and be placed in the pre-operative section of the surgical center. Dr. Kuhlman will meet you prior to surgery to answer any questions you may have, calm your nerves and verify you are ready for the procedure. During this time, an IV will be placed to assist the delivery of Anesthesia (Anesthesia types vary depending on patient and procedure).

Dr. Kuhlman-Wood will have determined an individualized technique for your procedure to reduce the size of your breasts, which will depend upon the amount of excess fat and skin in the breast composition, and how much you would like to have removed, along with a few other factors. If there is only a large amount of fatty tissue and excess skin does not need to be removed, liposuction may be used. If there is excess skin and tissue along with the excess fat, they will need to make incisions on different areas of the breast to perform removal. In this case, they may also use liposuction along with the excision, but not liposuction alone.

If incisions are necessary, they will be made in one of three areas: a circular incision around each areola, a keyhole shaped incision that goes around each areola and then down to the crease of the breast, or an anchor-shaped incision starting along the crease of the breast and traveling up and around the areolas.

Recovering from your Breast Reduction

Dressings and/or bandages will be placed over the incisions after the procedure is complete. Dr. Kuhlman-Wood and her staff will provide you with individualized instructions detailing your post-operative care. These instructions will detail information about your dressings, how long you’ll need to wear them, how to change them, and how to keep your incisions clean and free of infection. Dr. Kuhlman will have you wear an elastic bandage for support in order to minimize post-operative swelling– especially as your chest begins to heal.

Small tubes called drains will be placed underneath your skin in order to collect any fluid or blood that may result as a natural part of the body’s healing process. The staff at Coeur d’Alene Plastic Surgery will schedule the necessary follow-up visits to have your drains or non-dissolving stitches removed. Dr. Kuhlman-Wood will also outline which medications to take to prevent infection, aid in your healing, and reduce pain. She will also provide guidance on when it is appropriate to resume your normal daily activities, like exercise and work.

There are many factors that can determine the cost of a breast reduction procedure. However, you should expect to pay between $7,000 and $10,000. This includes Dr. Kuhlman-Wood’s surgical fee, the cost of anesthesia, facility fees for the hospital and/or surgical center, medical tests, clothing and bandages required after the procedure, and prescriptions for pain medication and antibiotics. It also includes 90 days of post-operative care.

Although monetary cost is important, it is only one of several factors to consider. It is equally important to find a surgeon who is board-certified by the ABPS, trustworthy, and close enough to reduce travel time between visits – especially after your procedure. Perhaps most importantly, choose a surgeon with whom you are comfortable to share in your surgical journey.

RealSelf Patient Reviews of Kate Kuhlman-Wood, MD