Breasts of any size can be pendulous.[1]

Pendulous breasts are breasts that do not have an upright and/or round appearance, and are, instead, longer and more cylindrical shaped. Those with pendulous breasts have a majority of the breast tissue and a nipple at or below the inframammary fold, lack cleavage, and have little fullness of the upper breast.[2]

For many women with larger breasts, pendular breasts are normal and do not cause any inherent health concerns, unless they are causing physical or mental pain. Pendulous breasts often have nipples that point downward and are located beneath the inframammary fold. It is worth noting that this normal process results in a breast shape that is prized by some cultures as a sign of fertility and mature femininity.[2]

Health concernsEdit

The physical problems have to do with general size more than the breast shape. Very heavy and large breasts cause back pain and poor posture. Women will also have a difficult time finding clothes that fit and flatter. Emotional health concerns, due to the view of a woman and others of her body, are also serious.[2]



There are a lot of myths that wearing bras more often, whether to sleep or during the day, help to combat sagging. However, unless one is engaged in athletic activity, this is not true. In fact, quite the opposite has been found in scientific studies.

We have no evidence that wearing a bra could prevent sagging, because the breast itself is not muscle, so keeping it toned up is an impossibility.[3]

A properly fitted bra will help breasts appear less pendulous while one is wearing it, however, but it will not do anything to change the actual perkiness of breasts. In fact, studies suggest that wearing a bra can actually increase, rather than decrease, breast sagging[4] and increases breast perkiness, elevation, and firmness over time.[5][need more sources] However, running without a sports bra can increases sagging, due to stretching of the ligaments.[6]

To prevent sagging, do not wear a bra while lounging around and/or sleeping,[needs sources] but do wear a supportive sports bra when engaging in physical activity.


There are surgical options, such as a breast lift. For those with very large breasts, a breast reduction might be a better option.[2]


  1. Dr. Ashraf Metwally: "Breast Reduction Surgery"
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 Muscle Works Magazine: "Pendulous breasts problems"
  3. Channel 4 UK: "Bras, the Bare Facts"
  4. Ashizawa, K., Sugane, A., Gunji, T.: "Breast form changes resulting from a certain brassière"
  5. Pierrot L.: "Evolution du sein après l'arrêt du port du soutien gorge, étude préliminaire longitudinale sur 33 sportives volontaires"
  6. Ayres, B., White, J., Hedger, W., and Scurr, J.: "The influence of sports bra material properties on upper body and breast skin temperature and thermal comfort following exercise."

See alsoEdit

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