Breast Lift

Breast Lift

Breast lift surgery, or mastopexyraises and contours the breasts to their natural position. The breast shape is intrinsic to female beauty. Breasts are formed by the developed mammary gland tissue, fat and interspersed ligaments and its development is completed between 16 and 18 years of age. Sagging of breasts occurs partly due to the effects of gravity and partly due to deterioration of glandular tissues and stretching of ligaments connecting the skin to the underlying muscles. Apart from age, multiple pregnancies, breast feeding, rapid weight gain and loss, and genetics play a role in this sagging process.

lady breast

Breasts that have lost their firm, uplifted contours can affect a woman’s self-image and confidence.

Breast lift surgically relocates the breasts to a higher location on the chest wall, removes excess loose skin and thus tightens and reshapes the breast to make it firm and youthful looking. A Breast lift can also reduce the size of the areola (pigmented skin surrounding the nipple).

TYPES OF BREAST LIFTS

The Periareolar Lift

The Benelli or ‘’Donut mastopexy’’ is appropriate for a small breast lift only. It involves aperiareolar scar.It is mainly used for small repositioning of the nipple. Because it is a skin lift rather than an internal breast tissue lift, there can be a tendency for the NAC to flatten out and less frequently for the areola to widen out if the permanent suture fails.

The Vertical lift

Also called the ‘’lollipop lift’’ the vertical lift addresses both the underlying droopy breast tissue and overlying saggy skin to give the breast a rounder and firmer shape in addition to lifting. The internal suturing helps hold the breast in its natural position for a good number of years. The scars in this lift are smaller than in the inverted T Lift, are barely noticeable and fade well with time. The Vertical Lift gives a great shape and volume to your breasts keeping people guessing that you have gone the silicone way !

The Inferior Pedicle

Also called the’’ Wise or Anchor technique’’ this is by far the commonest type of breast lift. This technique creates an inverted T scar around the areola down vertically the lower breast pole and a long horizontal scar running in the inframammary fold. The Wise technique has been the traditional workhorse of breast lifts and breast reductions for over 30 years now.

Does my Breast Lift need an Implant ?

In a breast lift an implant is Not a necessity and are required only if you want to achieve bigger breasts. HoweverIf you are smaller than you want to be, you need a breast implant.

Placing an implant also gives more fullness and shape particularly in the upper part of the breast and cleavage. If you are happy with your size only a breast lift is recommended. An implant guarantees you will undergo a second surgery in the future particularly those who are a C cup or higher. AlsoImplants do not age as natural tissue ages.

Am I the Ideal Candidate for a Breast lift ?

You are the Ideal Candidate for a breast lift if

  • Your breasts have lost volume and firmness
  • You have breasts that are pendulous with a flatter, elongated shape
  • Your nipples point downward or fall below the breast crease when the breast is unsupported
  • You have stretched skin and/or enlarged areolas
  • You have breasts which are asymmetrical (one breast lower than the other)
  • For patient’s with small, saggy breasts with lost volume, it is desirable to combine breast implants with the breast lift.
  • Have a positive outlook and realistic expectations about outcome.

Although mastopexy can be performed at any age, it is usually recommended to wait until breast development is complete. Most surgeons will recommend waiting until a woman has completed her family, since pregnancy and breastfeeding may have significant and unpredictable effects on the size and shape of your breasts.

The First Consultation

During the consultation, you will be asked about your desired breast shape and size. This will help to understand your goals and expectations and determine if they can be achieved realistically. Any risks or complications involved will be explained. Details of the surgery regarding nipple and areola repositioning and desired volume will be discussed.

It is important for you to provide complete information about your past medical history, any medical illness, drug allergies, previous surgeries including breast biopsies, and medications that you currently take. It is recommended that you stabilize your weight prior to surgery. Individual factors and personal preferences will determine the specific technique selected to lift your breasts.

General Guidelines prior to surgery for Mastopexy

  • An initial Breast examination and detailed chest and breast measurements will be taken along with pre operative photographs.
  • Pre-operative Anaesthetic assessment for fitness for surgery
  • Agreement to proceed with the surgery by signing an informed Consent Form
  • Stop smoking 2-3 weeks prior to surgery
  • Avoid taking anti inflammatory medicines 2 weeks prior to surgery
  • Stop taking the oral contraceptive pills 6 weeks prior to surgery and use alternative means of contraception.

Grading of Breast Ptosis

1st Degree ptosis:the nipple-areola complex is slightly below or in the level of the inframammary fold.

2nd Degree ptosis: the nipple-areola complex falls less than 3 cm below the inframammary fold.

3rd Degree ptosis:the nipple-areola complex falls more than 3 cm below the inframammary fold.

Pseudo Ptosis : The lower pole of the breast lies below the Inframammary fold while the NAC lies above it gibving the appearance of ptosis.

Breast Lift Surgery

Your breast lift surgery will be performed in the hospital under general anaesthesia for your comfort. The attending Anaesthetist will explain the type and risks of the particular form of anaesthesia for your operation. Modern Breast Lift is now usually done by the vertical scar technique in which case only a single vertical scar will result. In some instances however the inverted T scar or the Benelli techniques are required. A tube to drain out collected blood may need to be placed, depending upon the amount of dissection.

You usually have to stay a minimum of one night in the hospital after your operation. If tube drains have been placed in your breasts they are generally removed 1-2 days later. It usually takes 2-3 days to recover from the surgery. All wounds are well healed within 7-10 days of the procedure. Stitches are usually absorbable and do not need to be removed.

Recovery Period

There will be some bruising and swelling which usually lasts for approximately 2- 4 weeks. It is important to remember that the breasts may take approximately 3-6 months to achieve their final shape and feel.

Patients can get back to work within a week and to a normal exercise programme 4 weeks after the surgery. You will be instructed to wear a support bra for 6-8 weeks, until the swelling and discoloration of your breasts diminish.

Common Questions

A fundamental part of surgery is the need for an incision: the severity of visibility of scars left after the incision are dependent on your skin type and the Plastic Surgeon’s expertise. In most patients the scar heals well, but in a very small number of people the scar remainsS.

Unless you gain or lose a significant amount of weight or have multiple pregnancies, your new breast shape should remain fairly constant for a long time. The operation does not prevent the influence of gravity and time and therefore the uplift effect may not be lifelong.

You may notice less sensation in the nipple and areola areas. This is usually temporary and may take weeks or a few months before sensation returns to normal. It is important to remember that the human body is asymmetrical and the breasts are no different. Therefore breast asymmetry may persist after the surgery. Specific potential complications relating to mastopexy are rarely incision site scarring and difficulty in breast feeding..

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Most patients have mild discomfort, and many don’t even require pain medication. Patients are up and about the next day and have a rapid recovery with the exception of strenuous activity, vigorous exercise, or lifting over 10 lbs. These activities need to avoided for two weeks following surgery to minimize any risk of bleeding.

Patients can shower the next day, and exercises can be resumed two weeks after surgery. Most patients can join back work in 4-5 days timedepending on their recovery..

All patients form “scars.” Scars are simply the lines where skin is “sutured’’ together. The characteristics of the scar its width, thickness and pigmentation will differ with different skin types and genes. It is rare for any patient to come back with scar as a complaint as most settle down nicely in a years time.

Your breast lift will stay for a good number of years till the time ageing setsalong with other factors like gravity and breast feeding. Wearing a supportive bra can usually slow this process. The breast swelling and subsequent volume loss that often accompanies pregnancy or breastfeeding may lead to the recurrence of breast ptosis in some women, but this is very subjective.

10-20% of all patients with breast lifts may get some degree of nipple sensitivity changes. Most of this resolves by six to nine months after surgery. Certain patients may have some permanent changes, but it is not usually an issue that they notice.

It is difficult to predict but a percentage of patients may not be able to breast feed properly.

Schedule a Consultation

If you would like to schedule a breast lift consultation, please contact online or by phone today. Dr. Birraj will be happy to answer your questions and talk with you about all aspects of the procedure