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Objective Effects of Breast Reduction Surgery on Physical Fitness

Knox, Jennifer, A., MD, MS*; Nelson, D., Alan, MPAS, PhD; Latham, Kerry, P., MD; Kurina, Lianne, M., PhD

doi: 10.1097/SAP.0000000000001167
Breast Surgery

Background Reduction mammaplasty is known for excellent outcomes and patient satisfaction. Although patients report improvements in pain, weight loss, and exercise levels, objective data on physical fitness benefits are limited.

Methods Using the Stanford Military Data Repository, we identified 89 US Army active duty women with at least 1 pre- and postoperative Army Physical Fitness Test (APFT) who underwent reduction mammaplasty during 2011 to 2014. We used paired t tests to compare pre- and postoperative APFT score means and raw values for push-ups, sit-ups, and the 2-mile run.

Results There were 56 subjects (62.9%) who improved in total APFT scores. Total score means increased from 235.9 preoperatively to 243.4 postoperatively (P = 0.0065). Of 28 subjects with at least 2 APFT scores before and after surgery, 20 (71.4%) improved in total scores. The subgroup's mean total score increased from 237.8 to 251.3 (P = 0.0009). Comparing individual pre- and postprocedure APFTs, all subjects demonstrated a mean 3.9% (SD, 0.1) improvement in total scores, and the subpopulation of 28 improved by 6.3% (SD, 0.1). In all events, mean performance values trended toward better postoperative scores. Differences were statistically significant for the total population for the number of sit-ups (P = 0.035), and, for the subgroup of 28, differences were statistically significant for the total score (P = 0.0009), sit-ups (P = 0.0002), and push-ups (P = 0.0134).

Conclusions Reduction mammaplasty was associated with postoperative physical fitness improvements among US Army active duty women. Soldier data are useful for objectively assessing physical fitness effects of breast reduction surgery.

From the *Landstuhl Regional Medical Center, Landstuhl, Germany; †Department of Medicine, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, CA; and ‡Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, Bethesda, MD.

Received February 16, 2017, and accepted for publication, after revision April 23, 2017.

Conflicts of interest and sources of funding: none declared.

The views expressed in this presentation are those of the authors and do not reflect the official policy or position of the Office of the Surgeon General, Department of the Army, Department of Defense, or the US Government.

This study was presented at the Northwest Society of Plastic Surgeons, 2016, in Kauai, HI, and at the Annual Meeting of the American Association of Plastic Surgeons, 2016, in New York, NY.

Reprints: Lianne M. Kurina, PhD, Department of Medicine, Stanford University School of Medicine, 450 Serra Mall, Bldg 20, Stanford, CA 94305-2160. E-mail:

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