What is Breast Lift Surgery?
A Breast Lift — also known as mastopexy — is a surgical procedure performed by a plastic surgeon to change the shape of your breasts. During a Breast Lift, excess skin is removed, and breast tissue is reshaped to raise the breasts.
You might choose to have a Breast Lift if your breasts are saggy, or your nipples point downward. A Breast Lift might also boost your self-image and self-confidence.
New statistics from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons show that the amount of Breast Lift procedures has grown 70% since 2000, outpacing breast implants 2-to-1.
Sometimes the areola becomes enlarged over time, and a Breast Lift will reduce it as well. A Breast Lift can rejuvenate your body with a breast profile that is more youthful and uplifted.
When is Breast Lift Surgery needed?
A woman's breasts often change over time, losing their youthful shape and firmness. These changes and loss of skin elasticity can result from:
- Weight fluctuations
What Breast Lift Surgery cannot do?
Breast Lift Surgery does not significantly change the size of your breasts or round out the upper part of your breast. If you want your breasts to look fuller, consider Breast Lift and Breast Augmentation Surgery.
If you want smaller breasts, consider combining breast lift and breast reduction surgery.
How is Breast Lift Surgery performed?
In general, the surgery involves the following steps:
- The surgeon will mark your breasts in the standing position to determine the new lifted position of the nipple on your breast.
- You will get general anesthesia to relax you and relieve pain. You will be asleep during the surgery.
- The surgeon will make an incision (cut) around the areola. The cut will usually extend down the front of your breast, from the bottom of the areola to the crease. It may also extend along the sides of the areola.
- The surgeon will lift and reshape your breasts. Afterward, the surgeon will move your areolas to the correct position on the new breast shape and may also reduce their size.
- The surgeon will remove any extra skin to give your breasts a firmer appearance.
- Finally, the surgeon will close the incisions with stitches, sutures, skin adhesives, or surgical tape. Surgeons usually try to place incisions in parts of the breast where they will be less visible.
You may decide to have breast implants at the same time as a breast lift. An implant can increase the size or fullness of your breasts. For safety reasons, surgeons will not usually do the two procedures at the same time. If this is the case, you will first undergo the lift, with the augmentation weeks to months later. This “staging” is needed to prevent a loss or necrosis of the nipple.
How long does the Breast Lift Surgery take?
The Breast Lift Surgery lasts about 2-4 hours.
What are the risks and complications involved in Breast Lift Surgery?
Complications after Breast Lifts are relatively rare. The most common are bleeding, infection, and scarring. Your surgeon will give you instructions that will help lower the risk of complications. Those instructions will include such things as not smoking, making sure you are off medications that may make bleeding more likely, and taking antibiotics if necessary.
After you have your Breast Lift, you may have:
- Typically, they will fade over time.
- Changes in nipple or breast sensation. Usually, it comes back within a couple of weeks, but it can sometimes be permanent.
- Different shapes or sizes of the breasts. Sometimes, this happens because breasts heal at a different pace.
- Loss of your nipple or areola.This happens rarely but can happen if the procedure causes blood loss in the area.
Breast Lift and breast implant placement -
Some women may want to consider the placement of a breast implant in addition to the breast lift.
An implant can provide improved upper breast fullness or cleavage. Implants can be placed at the same time or as a second procedure, depending on the experience of the surgeon.
What are the specific features of recovery after Breast Lift Surgery?
During your breast lift recovery, dressings or bandages will be applied to the incisions after the procedure is completed.
You will need to wear an elastic bandage or support bra to minimize swelling and support your breasts as they heal.
A small, thin tube may be temporarily placed under the skin to drain any excess blood or fluid that may appear. You will be given specific instructions that may include:
- How to take care of your breasts after the surgery
- Medications to apply or take orally to aid healing and reduce the risk of infection
- Specific concerns to look for at the surgical site or in your general health
- When to follow up with your plastic surgeon.
Breast lift surgery should give your breasts a more lifted, firmer appearance. You may have some scars on your breasts, but they should fade over time. Newer breast lift techniques cut down on scarring. To maintain your new look, try to avoid significant changes in your weight.
You may not be able to breastfeed after this surgery. If you plan to get pregnant in the future, check with your doctor before having the procedure.
How much does a Breast Lift surgery cost?
It can vary significantly depending on multiple factors, including:
Experience of the surgeon
Location of the procedure (office, surgery center, hospital)
Type of anesthesia used
*A low-cost Breast lift surgery performed by an inexperienced surgeon who delivers poor results is not a good combination.