Breast Lift

The effects of aging, gravity, pregnancy or weight loss can lead to smaller, sagging breasts with enlarged areola (the pigmented skin around the nipple). A breast lift, also known as a mastopexy, is a plastic surgery procedure that reshapes, raises and firms the breast, creating a more youthful appearance. In addition, a breast lift can reduce the size of the areola if necessary. If you have drooping breasts and also want to replace or add breast volume, the placement of breast implants in combination with a breast lift will be necessary.

What are some of the most common benefits of a Breast Lift?

Vertical Scar Breast Reduction/Lift technique is performed by Crystal Clinic Plastic Surgeons in Akron, OH. This procedure, also called a Vertical Mammaplasty, combines a breast reduction with a lift and results in more projection, often shorter scars, and higher, younger looking breasts. Breasts that are re-shape with this technique are also less likely to sag over time.

A breast lift will enhance your breast firmness and shape, producing breasts that are more youthful. The result is not only a new look, but also a new outlook. A completely enhanced breast appearance is possible when you combien breast lift with breast augmentation in Akron, Ohio.

What will happen at the initial consultation?

Having breast enhancement in Akron, OH is a highly personal decision, and we want to make sure all of your questions and concerns are addressed. The consultation will begin with a complete medical history and exam. You should tell your doctor if you have any history of scarring; any history of breast surgery or breast disease; any family history of breast cancer; any history of lupus, rheumatoid arthritis or connective tissue diseases, and the results of your mammograms. If you are planning to lose a significant amount of weight or you may want to become pregnant in the future, you should mention this to your doctor. You will be asked about the changes you would like to make in your breast size, breast shape, nipple location, size of the areola and anything else related to the appearance of your breasts. This will help us understand your expectations and determine whether they can realistically be achieved.

The examination will evaluate the size and shape of your breasts, the size and location of your nipples and areolas (the colored skin around the nipple), the quality of your skin and the proportion of your bustline to your body. Other options available will be discussed, including the possible need for breast augmentation to restore lost breast volume or form a larger breast size. You can see photos of recent patients before and after surgery, and patient references are available upon request. The estimated costs of the treatment will be explained. Photographs will be taken for your medical record. Click here to Request Your Consultation at Crystal Clinic Plastic Surgeons.

Candidates for this procedure

You may be a good candidate for a breast lift if:

  • Your breasts lack firmness, but you have adequate volume
  • You have stretch marks on the skin around the breasts
  • Your nipple and areola are pointing downward and are no longer on the center, most projecting part of your breast
  • You are willing to accept incisions around your areola and perhaps other incisions on your breasts
  • At one time you had been pleased with your breast size and shape, but with pregnancy, weight loss or aging, this has changed
  • You are doing this for yourself and not someone else
  • Women with large drooping breasts will benefit from a breast reduction procedure–a procedure which, like a breast lift, will firm, raise and reshape the breast. One difference between a breast lift and a breast reduction is that the excessive, heavy, sagging breast tissue that causes symptoms of neck, shoulder and back pain is removed.

There are several techniques and incisions used for a breast lift. The particular technique for you will depend on the size and shape of your breasts, the extent of drooping and the size of your areola.

Incisions following the breast’s natural contour define the area of excision and the new location for the nipple. Skin in the shaded area is removed and the nipple moved higher.

Incisions are made in the breast to define the area of excision and the new location for the nipple. Breast tissue, fat and skin in the light shaded areas are then removed. Skin is removed from the darker shaded area, and the nipple is elevated.

Incisions are made in the breast to define the area of excision and the new location for the nipple. Breast tissue, fat and skin in the light shaded areas are then removed. Skin is removed from the darker shaded area, and the nipple is elevated.

Use of Breast Implants

Breast augmentation with implants is frequently used in conjunction with a breast lift to restore lost breast volume or to add fullness in areas that are difficult to maintain with a breast lift alone, especially the upper part of the breast. Because a breast lift is considered a reconstructive procedure in certain situations, either saline-filled or silicone gel-filled implants can be used in patients undergoing a breast lift. Minimal Scar Breast Reduction/Lift – Traditionally, incisions for a breast lift or breast reduction include a long scar along the entire crease under the breast. Our doctors use short scar techniques on breast lifts and breast reductions. A short scar technique known as Vertical Mammaplasty makes it possible to eliminate that long incision, while also producing a rejuvenated, more youthful breast shape.

Liposuction in Breast Lift and Breast Reduction Procedures.

Liposuction is commonly used as a tool to re-shape the breast by removing fat in the area under the arm and the area around the bottom breast crease. Occasionally, liposuction of the breast is performed to reduce the weight of the breast or to assist in re-shaping.

Will my medical insurance cover a Breast Lift?

Normally, a breast lift is considered a cosmetic procedure, and health insurance does not pay for it. However, in women who have had a mastectomy for breast cancer, a breast lift is often necessary on the normal breast in order to obtain symmetry. According to federal law, your health insurance must cover the costs for breast reconstruction, including a breast lift on the normal breast. You should check with your health insurance company prior to surgery and obtain written confirmation that they will cover the procedure.

Risks and Limitations

Every year many women undergo breast lift surgery successfully and are happy with results. However, as with any surgical procedure, there are potential risks from anesthesia, bleeding or infection. Fortunately, in breast lift surgery these complications are infrequent. The following are other potential risks of a breast lift:

  • Scars-The tradeoff for nicely shaped breasts from a breast lift are the resulting scars. Some people make prominent scars called keloids or hypertrophic scars. There is no way to know if you are one of those people unless you’ve had a past history of this occurring. However, there are several ways to intervene to help prevent and treat prominent scars if they occur.
  • Risks Sssociated with Breast Implants-When breast implants are placed in combination with a breast lift, all of the potential risks of breast implants apply. Please see the section on Breast Augmentation for a more in-depth discussion.
  • Breast Asymmetry-While our goal is to make your breasts perfect in size and shape, this may not occur. Revision surgery is rarely needed (less than five percent), but is an option if necessary.
  • Loss of Nipple Sensitivity-This is usually temporary and improves over several weeks. Rarely, it can be permanent.
  • Nipple Death-This very uncommon complication may occur if the blood supply to the nipple is insufficient or the nipple becomes excessively engorged with blood.

How is Breast Lift surgery performed?

The goal of Crystal Clinic Plastic Surgeons and the Crystal staff is to make your surgical experience as easy and comfortable for you as possible. A mammogram will be recommended if you have not had one within the past year. You will be asked to stop smoking and avoid certain vitamins and drugs that can cause bleeding, such as aspirin, ibuprofen and vitamin E. Additional preoperative instructions and prescriptions to be used postoperatively will be provided. For convenience, we recommend that you have your prescriptions filled several days prior to the procedure. Breast lift surgery is usually performed on an outpatient basis, and you should arrange for someone to take you home and stay with you the first night.

Your procedure will be performed in an outpatient surgery center or hospital. The physician will see you before the procedure, sometimes even the day before the procedure, and place ink marks on the skin. General anesthesia is used for almost everyone. Antibiotics will be administered at the time of surgery. The procedure takes two to five hours. The procedure consists of making an incision around the areola, relocating the nipple to the new position on the center of the breast mound, removing the lax and sagging skin, and, finally, reducing the size of the areola. If a breast implant is going to be placed, it is positioned prior to removing the lax skin. After each breast is addressed individually, they are examined for symmetry. Dissolvable stitches are used to close the incisions, and your breasts will be wrapped in gauze dressings or a surgical bra.

Following surgery, you will be taken to the recovery area where you will continue to be closely monitored. Pain medications are administered to keep you comfortable. You will be permitted to go home after a few hours unless you have planned to stay overnight.

What can I expect after Breast Lift surgery?

The day after surgery you can remove the bulky dressing and shower. You can expect to be sore for a few days. If the implants are used and placed under the muscle, the soreness will be present for three to four days. If the implants are placed above the muscle, the discomfort lasts one to two days. You will be asked to wear a special bra for the first one to two weeks. Swelling and bruising will fully resolve in about two weeks. The implants will “settle” for four to six weeks. You may notice the incision around the areola is gathered. This will gradually smooth out over the next few months.

By three to four days you should be able to lift normal-weighted objects, drive and lift your arms above your head. You may return to work four to seven days after surgery. Activities that require extensive use of the arms and chest, including repetitive lifting, should be limited for two to three weeks. You may resume sexual activity after one week, but you should be gentle with your breasts for the next four to six weeks. At six weeks you should be back to your normal activities. The scars may be red or pink for several months, but should gradually improve.

What is the long-term outcome for most people?

Breast lift surgery can be very rewarding. It can restore a more youthful shape to your breasts, leading to a feeling of greater self-confidence in your appearance. Unfortunately, a breast lift does not stop the effects of gravity and aging on your breasts. If, over time, you become dissatisfied with the appearance of your breasts, you may want to consider a revision. We recommend annual follow-ups to make sure you remain satisfied with your result. For future comparison, you should have a mammogram nine to 12 months after the procedure.