A MUM and daughter have enjoyed their first pain-free Mother's Day in memory - after undergoing breast reduction surgery in Sheffield.
Valerie Whiting and Helen Bagshaw are true bosom buddies after undergoing the same procedure to get their breasts down to a more proportionate size to their frame.
The surgery, carried out at the Northern General Hospital in Sheffield, has meant the end to years of back pain, neck ache and bad posture. It's also stopped them having to avoid a host of everyday things like running for the bus because of embarrassment.
The duo celebrated their new look with a night out to see Calendar Girls at the theatre - a trip which also marked Mother's Day.
Helen, aged 33, had suffered with her chest since her bosoms ballooned to a size 32JJ 10 years ago after breast-feeding her daughter.
The mum-of-two, from Rotherham, underwent surgery in August 2009 to become a 32DD to match her size 12 frame.
She'd been encouraged to take the plunge after seeing the results of her mum's operation last March.
Helen said: "I'm delighted with the results.
"I just feel so much more confident. My quality of life has improved tremendously - before the op I couldn't do the simplest of things like running for the bus - I always had to hold my boobs down! I felt as though I couldn't do some things I enjoy, like swimming, because I felt so self-conscious.
"At 33, I want to be a 'yummy-mummy' wearing funky clothes, not hiding under baggy T-shirts. I had been thinking about breast reduction for quite a while so when I accompanied my mum at pre-operative appointments, I asked questions to the plastic surgeon who explained the process thoroughly."
Valerie too is thrilled with the results.
After 30 years of strain under her 36G chest, she has been left with grooves on her shoulders where her bra straps had dug in.
But now, at a size 36DD, she is enjoying a pain-free life.
She said: "The first holiday I went on after my breast reduction was a cruise - it was the first time I can remember wearing a vest top with pride.
"My husband even said - 'By gum lass, tha look's great', which made me smile."
Mr David Lam, consultant plastic surgeon at the Northern General, treated both mum and daughter,
He said: "An excessively heavy bust is a common condition that causes much distress physically with neckache, backache and troublesome rashes under the breast creases. Psychologically, patients suffer a lot of social distress and also encounter relationship difficulties because of their perceived body image."
Now, after the successful surgery, both women have put such problems behind them and are looking ahead to the future.
Valerie said: "I put up with discomfort and back pain for so long, and I wish I'd had the operation 20 years ago."
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