Following breast reconstruction surgery, there may be some differences in the shape and size of your breasts. In this case, you may need additional breast surgery to get a symmetrical result. 

What is Breast Symmetrisation?

After breast cancer treatment and reconstruction, it’s normal to expect some difference in the shape or size of the breasts. But, if the difference is too extreme or distressing or your clothes don’t fit, breast symmetrisation surgery is an option. 

Sometimes, the difference in your breasts can be immediate, or it can develop over time. There is a range of options available to help restore balance, create a more symmetrical look, and leave you feeling more feminine. 

What Happens During Breast Symmetrisation?

Breast symmetrisation surgery is an umbrella term for several breast-related surgeries. After reconstructive surgery, you may have one breast larger or smaller than the other. You can also feel like one breast is much droopier than the other breast. Breast symmetrisation surgery can involve the below procedures. Your plastic surgeon will help guide you on the best decision for your situation so that your treatment is completely personalised to your body. 

Breast Augmentation

Sometimes a treated breast can be quite a lot larger than your natural one. In this situation, your surgeon may suggest getting breast implants. This would involve an operation to place a breast implant in your other breast to achieve symmetry. 

Breast Reduction

Other times, your natural or reconstructed breast may be smaller. Again, this can make finding clothes that fit difficult and create an asymmetrical appearance. In this case, a breast reduction may be suitable. 

Nipple Reconstruction

Nipple reconstruction aims to create a new nipple using your body’s own tissue. Usually, nipple reconstruction is performed after breast reconstructive surgery once your new breasts are settled into place. If your nipple has been removed and you can’t create a nipple during reconstructive surgery, you can have a nipple made during a later procedure.  


Lipofilling or lipomodelling can improve the contours of the breast after reconstruction. You can inject fat into the required area or remove fat from the reconstructed breast to create a softer, smaller appearance, so both breasts match. 

What is the Recovery Timeline for Breast Symmetrisation?

The recovery timeline differs depending on your treatment. It can range from weeks to months. It can take up to 10 days to recover from a nipple reconstruction, while you would need 4 to 6 weeks to recover from breast augmentation. Your recovery process will depend on your procedures or combination of procedures. 

What are the Benefits of Breast Symmetrisation?

The main benefit of these procedures is that they can restore symmetrical breasts following cancer and reconstructive treatment. This helps to boost confidence, improve self-esteem, and allows clothes to fit you better. 

What are the Potential Risks and Side Effects of Breast Symmetrisation?

It’s important to know that all these surgeries come with potential risks and side effects, including but not limited to:

  • Anaesthetic risks
  • Infection
  • Bleeding  
  • Change in nipple sensation 
  • Uneven appearance
  • Numbness
  • Pain 

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