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April 4, 2020

“That’s What She Said!” Dr. Aisha White Returns to the Program to Discuss Breast Reduction and Supporting the Women In Our Lives

Speaker 1: 

Welcome back to the Armor Men’s Health Hour with Dr. Mistry and Donna Lee.

Dr. Mistry: 

Welcome back to Armor Men’s Health Hour. This is Dr. Mistry, your host, here as always with my absolutely amazing and funny comedian…

Donna Lee: 

You never say beautiful. Now I have to go see our special guest and get a transformation done, so…

Dr. Mistry: 

You know what? You know what today is, don’t ya?

Donna Lee: 

Saturday.

Dr. Mistry: 

It’s one of our favorite Saturdays.

Donna Lee: 

Hey! That’s what she said!

Dr. Mistry: 

That’s right. This is our opportunity to help you men get educated on things going on with your lady friends. You know, I want to start off by saying that you have incredibly huge breasts, Donna Lee.

Donna Lee: 

Oh, I do.

Dr. Mistry: 

Like really.

Donna Lee: 

It is true.

Dr. Mistry: 

Like, like you really put that [inaudible], I feel like that was like 80% of your comedian like thing.

Donna Lee: 

It was, I think.

Dr. Mistry: 

If you weren’t Thai and didn’t have big breasts…

Donna Lee: 

I was cute, Thai, and big boobs, and I got on stage and then I ended up on TV because of my boobs.

Dr. Mistry: 

Does your back ever hurt because of it?

Donna Lee: 

No. But I know I have women friends whose backs, their back hurts. Yes.

Dr. Mistry: 

Can you imagine how many men are surprised out there that women actually have problems from large breasts?

Donna Lee: 

No, I think that they don’t care. Even if I said my back hurt, my husband would be like, “I don’t care. Your boobs are big!”

Dr. Mistry: 

Why don’t you get a better back brace? So happy to have for this “That’s What She Said” segment, Dr. Aisha White with Quintessence Plastic Surgery. Thanks a lot for joining us again.

Dr. White: 

Thank you for having me.

Dr. Mistry: 

One of my best friends really here in town, plastic surgeon that I go to for all of my patients’ needs. Takes care of cosmetic things as well as reconstructive things. And so thanks a lot for joining us.

Dr. White: 

Thank you for having me.

Dr. Mistry: 

Really, I wanted to talk about what should men know about breast reduction surgery? Because what’s interesting about that particular surgery, is I think that a lot of women delay getting it…

Dr. White: 

Mhmm, absolutely.

Dr. Mistry: 

…because they’re afraid of what men are going to think. I cannot imagine there’s so many men that put off fixing something that hurts. You guys are both laughing!

Dr. White: 

That number is zero.

Dr. Mistry: 

Do you know what I’m saying? The number of like, if there was a knife in my leg, and I’d be like, “Man, I wonder if my wife didn’t think that’s sexy?” I would not do that! I would go get the knife taken out. But I think that women suffer a long, long, long, long time.

Dr. White: 

They do.

Donna Lee: 

We do.

Dr. Mistry: 

And they end up with so many other medical problems because of whatever we’re going to call this right now, the need for a breast reduction surgery. What do we need to to help men understand, and and what are some complaints you might hear from your partner before you start telling them, you know what, it’s okay? Let’s start with who are the people most likely to have problems with excessive weight from breasts, and what words do I use to explain it?

Dr. White: 

I think that the people who are most likely to see me for breast reduction are people who obviously have very large pendulous breasts. I should say there’s a difference between a breast lift and a breast reduction, and sometimes that’s confusing for patients. So a breast lift in the purest sense is removal of the extra skin, but no breast tissue. So it’s sort of like bunching your breasts up, making it perky again, and removing the extra skin. When you have a breast reduction, you do get a lift. So that’s a perk. But you’re removing a significant…

Dr. Mistry: 

I like how you said “perk.”

Dr. White: 

It’s a perk. It’s a perk to make you perkier. Yes, it is a perk. And if, because breast reduction will, unlike a breast lift be covered by insurance because it has a medical problem associated with it–which is back pain, neck pain, migraines, rashes, you know, all sorts of things that women can have as a result of having these large, pendulous breasts. So I think the biggest misperception for men is that I think there’s this assumption that if their partner has a breast reduction, that she won’t have any breasts. And that’s not true at all. I mean, I would say a lot of the women who I see for breast reductions are H’s and J’s, and those women are still double D’s and E’s after those…

Dr. Mistry: 

I’m not even sure what those letters really mean.

Dr. White: 

Right?

Donna Lee: 

Ginormous, that’s what that means.

Dr. Mistry: 

This is not how I think this conversation goes. I don’t think the conversation goes, “Honey, I’m having lots of medical problems from my large breast tissue. I’m going to go get it reduced.” And the husband says, “No, you’re not.” Like, I don’t think that’s the conversation. I think the conversation is more like, “Honey, I have headaches all the time, “or “Honey, my back hurts. Can I have a massage,” or “My neck hurts.” And so she kind of recognizes what it is, but he may not really understand. So that’s really what I want to do is like help men understand what are some common complaints that women will have? Who are the women that are most likely to be at risk for it? At what point in the process is the best time to get the thing fixed?

Dr. White: 

It’s probably the most common complaints for sure are back pain, neck pain, and headache. Women can also have a shoulder grooving–that’s when the bra straps dig into your shoulders because of the weight of the breasts pulling on the bra. They can have rashes underneath their breasts, posture issues. It also can really inhibit your quality of life. So women will say, “Oh, I don’t exercise as often,” or “I have to wear three sports bras,” or “I can’t find a bathing suit that fits properly.” So it really, I think women have the sense that it’s sort of keeping them from living this full life. You know, it also impacts the kind of clothes that you can buy. And you know, women will say, “Well I can’t get pretty bras,” because the really big bras aren’t necessarily always pretty. There’s a market for that. I think they’re doing better.

Donna Lee: 

It’s not at Victoria’s secret, that’s for sure.

Dr. White: 

Oh my gosh, definitely not.

Dr. Mistry: 

And if you are experiencing these kinds of complaints, what are the steps that your primary doctor or what role does your primary doctor have in this? And, what does, what role does weight?

Dr. White: 

Sure. So I think, you can see your primary care physician, or for some women it might be their OBGYN, if that’s who’s their primary care physician and express that you’re having these issues, and you can be referred to a plastic surgeon to see if you’re an appropriate candidate. I think weight can play a part. I think there are 2 issues with that. I think for women who have extremely large breasts, even if they’re obese, if their breasts have always been large, even when they lose the weight, they’re still going to have large breasts. But you know…

Dr. Mistry: 

In some ways more pendulous now.

Dr. White: 

Right, in many ways more pendulous. We do encourage those patients to lose weight. In our office, the BMI cutoff is 35 and we encourage people to at least get to a BMI of 35 or less because you know, you’re healthier, you’re less likely to have anesthetic complications and you’ll have a better cosmetic result. Even though this is a procedure covered under insurance, people care about what their breasts look like. I think for some people it’s not a weight loss issue. It’s that they have really large breasts and I operate, I do breast reductions on people as young as 16 or 17 if their breasts have stopped growing. And you know, I’ve probably done breast reductions on people in their seventies even.

Donna Lee: 

Hmm. Wow.

Dr. Mistry: 

And so, um, what does a breast reduction, not a lift, but what does that surgery entail? And what can people expect in terms of recovery?

Dr. White: 

Sure. So usually what that surgery will do is it will reposition the nipple, but not remove it, because that’s a common question people will ask–Will the nipple be removed? Not in a traditional normal breast reduction under…

Dr. Mistry: 

And sensation remains the same?

Dr. White: 

So that’s one of the things that we talk about that could be a risk. So some people may have temporary loss of sensation. As you know, whenever you have a surgery, sometimes you can have some temporary numbness around the scar lines. And of course, since there is a scar around the areola, you could have some numbness of the nipple. There are people who could have permanent nipple numbness. And so people who are at highest risk for permanent nipple numbness and vascular problems to the nipple are people who smoke, people who have vascular disease, or people who have excessively long breasts.

Dr. Mistry: 

And so, um, how long did they stay in the hospital? How long does the surgery last?

Dr. White: 

So surgery is probably about 4 hours or so. They actually don’t stay in the hospital at all. So unless you have a significant medical problems or there’s a reason why we might have to monitor you after anesthesia, it’s an outpatient procedure. You’ll go home with drains in place. For most patients, those drains will come out at a week. And for that period afterwards, there’s just no heavy lifting or strenuous activity. And we usually ask that patients wear a bra that doesn’t have an underwire.

Dr. Mistry: 

And so, you know, as a husband, or even in some cases a father, or a boyfriend, what do you think our role is in helping women feel more comfortable, you know, making those first few steps into getting evaluated if we think they’re suffering medical consequences of excess breast tissue?

Dr. White: 

Sure. I think the biggest part is supporting them. I mean, there are women who come and see me and they say, “Oh, I’m here to have this done now because I’m having my divorce and my husband didn’t want it done before.” Or, you know, they’ll say, I don’t think my, my husband will approve of this.” If they’re seeing me in a consultation and they’ll say, “I want to discuss it with them.” And for sure your partners, you should be involved in these big decisions in their lives, but you want to support them in making the decisions that will help them live a fuller, healthier life

Dr. Mistry: 

Because, I mean, it’s no secret that self esteem and breast tissue really play, are really hand in hand with one another.

Dr. White: 

Sure.

Dr. Mistry: 

And I think that, in some ways, I think that women feel that that association is much stronger than many men might. So I’m hoping that men will understand that when your partner is suffering from a medical consequence, that support is real important, and it’s probably not manufactured in than mind. Right?

Dr. White: 

Right.

Donna Lee: 

Yeah.

Dr. Mistry: 

So, Dr. White, how do people get ahold of you?

Dr. White: 

So, you can reach us online at www.qpsatx.com, or give us a call at (512) 777-2969.

Dr. Mistry: 

Hey, thanks a lot for joining us today for this “That’s What She Said” segment. Donna Lee, how do people get ahold of us?

Donna Lee: 

They can call us during the week at (512) 238-0762 or reach out by email. You can email Dr. Mistry, you can email Dr. White if you have specific questions and I’ll get those over to her, to armormenshealth@gmail.com and our website is armormenshealth.com. We will be right back after these messages.

: 

Dr. Mistry wants to hear from you. Email questions to armormenshealth@gmail.com.

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