A breast lift, also known as a mastopexy, is a procedure to raise and reshape sagging breasts. As a woman ages, the skin loses elasticity and the breast undergoes fatty replacement of glandular tissue which can cause the breasts to lose their natural shape and firmness. A mastopexy procedure is designed to elevate and shape the breasts to give them a more youthful appearance. A breast lift may also be completed in conjunction with breast enlargement surgery (augmentation).
Reasons for Considering a Breast Lift:
Elevate the breasts due to sagging caused by the effects of aging, gravity and pregnancy.
Firm the breasts if they have lost substance due to pregnancy.
Re-position your nipples/areolas if they point down or to the side.
Bring back natural shape after weight loss.
The breast lift surgical procedure usually takes one and a half to three hours to perform. It is usually performed under general anesthesia as an outpatient. Techniques vary, but the most common procedure involves an anchor-like incision around the nipple and along the underside of the breast. The incision goes around the area where skin will be removed, thus defining how the nipple will be relocated. When the excess skin has been removed, the nipple and areola are moved into a higher position. The majority of the incision is hidden in the breast crease. In some cases a drainage tube is required.
Post-operative instructions call for rest and limited movement of the arms in order to minimize postoperative pain, bleeding and other complications. Compression dressings are applied at the conclusion of surgery to aid the healing process and to minimize movement of the breasts. Once the bandages are removed, the patient will need to wear a sports bra for several weeks to avoid the pressure of underwire bras on healing incisions. Patients sometimes report minor pain associated with surgery which can be treated with oral medication. While complications are rare, patients can minimize potential problems by carefully following the post-operative directions given by the surgeon. Patients can usually return to normal activities within two weeks after surgery and swim within four to six weeks after surgery.