A breast lift, also known as mastopexy, is a surgical procedure designed to lift the breast to a higher, more youthful position while restoring shape and firmness. As with all our procedures, the goal is to improve the patient’s self-esteem and quality of life.
There are different techniques used to achieve a breast lift:
- Donut mastopexy, also known as periareolar mastopexy, removes skin only from around the areola.
- Vertical mastopexy, or LeJuer mastopexy, removes extra skin around the areola and downward in a vertical line.
- Wise skin pattern mastopexy results in an inverted “T” scar pattern.
Each technique has its advantages. Donut and vertical mastopexy are considered short-scar techniques, as there is limited scarring on the breast. However, these procedures limit the ability to address loose and sagging skin. The wise skin pattern mastopexy offers the greatest flexibility in creating a higher, firmer, more youthful-looking breast.
Mastopexy can be performed with or without an implant under the breast tissue. Small implants can be used to help restore more youthful fullness at the top of the breast.
Am I a good candidate for a breast lift?
A breast lift is a good option for women seeking to regain shape, balance and firmness because of aging — from chronological aging, breastfeeding or weight loss. A breast lift can restore firmness and shape, but it’s important to know that it cannot halt the inevitable changes of time. Over time, the breasts will drop again to some degree. Good candidates for this procedure also understand that a mastopexy will create scarring and may require touch-up surgeries.
For all elective surgeries, we recommend that patients:
- Are aware of the known negative effects of any surgery, including pain, cost, recovery time and scarring.
- Are physically and emotional healthy. Surgery creates physical trauma, so it is important to be in good health before the procedure to ensure strong healing.
- Patients should have support systems in place at home and at work.
- Are non-smokers, as nicotine delays the healing process.
Additionally, for breast lift procedures, we recommend that patients should be at or near their ideal body weight and that they do not plan to give birth to additional children.
What should I expect during the consultation?
The first step in the process is an initial consultation with Dr. Surek and his staff. You will need to be prepared to review your medical history, including all past surgeries, medications and allergies, as well as your family history related to breast health and disease. We will also require results from a current mammogram; you may contact the office before your consultation for a mammogram referral.
Your examination will take place standing in front of a full-length mirror, to see the effects of gravity in order to make an accurate surgery plan. The exam will include detailed measurements of size and shape of the breast.
During this consultation, you will learn about the expected scar pattern, and staff will recommend whether an implant should be used to help meet your goals. You will receive a detailed estimate of costs, including fees for the hospital, anesthesia and surgeon. If you decide to have surgery, you will review the informed consent documents and ask any lingering questions. You may schedule a second consultation with the nurse coordinator, giving you more time to consider your options.
How is the surgery performed?
Breast lift surgery is performed under general anesthesia in an accredited surgical facility. The procedure takes about two hours. You should arrive one hour before your scheduled surgery time, allowing time for routine lab work and to visit with the anesthesiologist. Before the procedure, depending on the type of lift and use of implant, your skin might be marked for alteration and tightening of the skin.
If a breast implant is used, it will be placed during the first stage of the procedure. After the volume of the augmented breast is complete, the surgeon places sutures that help lift and shape the breast gland from the inside. In the final stage, skin is removed and tightened. The nipple and areola are never removed from the breast; they are repositioned while preserving blood supply or sensation.
Your first follow-up appointment is the day following surgery. After that visit, you may shower and should be able to quickly return to most of your daily activities.
For additional questions on breast lift procedures, or to schedule your consultation, contact Surek Plastic Surgery today.