A variety of natural factors produce changes in the appearance of a woman’s breasts. Aging, gravity, pregnancy, breastfeeding, weight fluctuations and genetics cause the breasts to lose their youthful shape and firmness. Over time, the breasts can droop and appear deflated, making it difficult to fit into flattering clothing and eroding a woman’s confidence. Breast lift surgery, also known as mastopexy, restores perkiness and an aesthetically pleasing shape to sagging breasts by removing excess skin and tightening the remaining tissue. Large, stretched areolas can also be reduced during the procedure to create more proportionate, youthful and natural-looking breasts.
What Benefits Can Breast Lift Surgery Provide?
Many women who have breast lift surgery are thrilled with their results. Patients who stand to gain the most benefit from a breast lift procedure are those who wish to correct:
- Drooping, sagging or pendulous breasts
- Loss of firmness
- Stretched or excess skin
- Breasts with a flat, elongated shape
- Uneven or asymmetrical breasts
- Nipples that point downward
- Nipples that fall below the breast crease
- Enlarged areolas
What Happens During Breast Lift Surgery?
Plastic surgeons use a variety of incision patterns and techniques when performing breast lift surgery. The appropriate method for your procedure will be determined based on the size and shape of your breasts, the degree of breast sagging, the size and position of your areolas, the amount of excess skin, the elasticity of your skin and your desired outcome. The most commonly used mastopexy incision patterns include:
The incision is made around the areola’s perimeter, vertically from the areola to the crease below the breast and horizontally along the breast crease. While this technique produces the most scarring, it is often the best choice for women with a severe degree of sagging and a significant amount of excess skin. It is frequently used in conjunction with a breast reduction.
The incision is made around the areola’s perimeter and down from the areola to the breast crease. This technique is effective for women with a moderate degree of sagging. Scarring is modest and easily hidden.
The incision is made around the areola’s perimeter. This technique is appropriate for women with a mild to moderate degree of sagging. It is often used when breast augmentation and breast lift are performed together.
The incision is made just along the upper half of the perimeter of the areola. This technique is the least invasive and produces the least scarring, but it is only effective for women with a minimal degree of sagging. It is the least frequently used technique.
During the procedure, the appropriate incision will be made and excess skin will be removed. The underlying breast tissue will be reshaped to improve breast contour and firmness, and the nipple will be relocated to a more youthful position. If necessary, the diameter of the areola will be reduced. When all shaping and repositioning is complete, the remaining skin will be tightened and the incisions will be closed.
What Can I Expect During Recovery?
Your incisions will be protected with dressing or bandages before you are discharged. Most patients experience some swelling and soreness after breast lift surgery. You may be required to wear a supportive garment to minimize swelling and support your breasts as they heal. Expect to sleep on your back during the initial part of the recovery period. Exercise and other strenuous activities will be limited at first, but light activities such as walking can be resumed relatively quickly. Breast lift patients typically return to work within a week after surgery. Soreness and swelling will continue to decrease with time until they have completely resolved.
What Results Can Breast Lift Surgery Achieve?
Mastopexy restores a firmer, perkier and more proportional breast shape. Results are immediately visible after surgery and continue to refine over several months as the breasts settle into their new shape and position. Patients who have undergone a breast lift procedure report feeling happier, fitter, more confident and more attractive after surgery. Many also find that it is easier to shop for clothing that is comfortable and flattering. Although mastopexy cannot halt the aging process, the results of your surgery will be long-lasting. Your breasts should not return to their preoperative level of sagging for many years. Maintain your weight and lead a healthy lifestyle to enjoy the results of your breast lift for as long as possible.
What Procedures Complement Breast Lift Surgery?
Mastopexy can dramatically improve breast shape, firmness and elevation, but it cannot significantly change the size or projection of your breasts. If you desire more volume, breast augmentation can be combined with breast lift surgery to increase fullness and improve the position of your breasts simultaneously. Alternatively, a breast lift may be combined with breast reduction surgery to reposition the breasts and alleviate the physical limitations and discomfort associated with excess breast tissue.
Is Breast Lift Surgery Right For Me?
The passage of time brings changes to the breasts. While these changes are natural, they are not always welcome. Breast lift surgery can restore perkier contours to breasts that have lost shape and volume due to weight loss, pregnancy or aging. Women who are dissatisfied with the sagging or deflated appearance of their breasts, who are physically healthy, who do not smoke and who have realistic expectations for the outcome of the procedure may be candidates for breast lift surgery. After a physical evaluation and a discussion of your goals, Dr. Bazzi will recommend a treatment plan designed to give your breasts a natural, elegant and youthful look you’ll love. Contact Bazzi Plastic Surgery at 734-844-5700 to request a consultation.