Breast Lift Surgery – Mastopexy
Breast lift or Mastopexy is a surgical procedure to raise and reshape sagging breasts. A breast lift can also reduce the size of the areola. If the breasts are small and have lost volume breast implants can increase both firmness and their size and be inserted during the lift procedure. A breast lift can be performed at any age, but one has to wait until breast development has stopped. Since milk ducts and nipples are left intact, surgery will not affect your ability to breast feed. Breasts that are large and heavy can be lifted, but the results may not be as long lasting as it is done on smaller breasts.
Reasons for undergoing a breast lift:
- Breasts that lack substance or firmness.
- Some of the candidates have breasts that are pendulous, but are of satisfactory size.
- Nipples and areolas that point downwards, especially if they are positioned below the breast crease.
- Loss of elasticity, weight loss, pregnancy and breast-feeding affect the shape and firmness of the breasts.
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During your visit, you will be asked about your desired breast shape and size. Your plastic surgeon will tell you how nipples and areolas will be repositioned. Mention your expectations about your breasts.
Cost of a Breast Lift:
A plastic surgeon will examine your breasts and take measurements. The size and shape of your breasts and the placements of nipples and areolas will be carefully evaluated. Medical history will be discussed like medicine conditions, drug allergies, medical treatments received, and previous surgeries. If there was a weight loss, your weight should be stabilized before surgery. An estimate for the cost of a breast lift is $6,800 – $16,000.
A breast lift is normally safe when performed by a qualified plastic surgeon. Significant complications from breast lifts are not frequent. Thousands of women go through surgery, without experiencing major problems and are pleased with the results. Following a breast lift, the breasts may not be perfectly symmetrical or the nipple may vary slightly, permanent loss of sensation in the nipples or areas of breast skin may occur. Revisional surgery may be helpful where incisions have healed poorly. Bleeding and infection following a breast lift are not common, but they can cause scars to widen. You can reduce the risks by clearly following your physician’s advice before and after surgery.
Types of anesthesia:
Breasts lifts are usually performed under general anesthesia. In patients where a smaller incision is being made the surgeon may use local anesthesia.
Full breast lift:
Mastopexy usually takes one and half to three and half hours. The most common procedure involves an anchor shaped incision across the base of the breast as well as incisions around the areolas and an incision between the areola and the base of the breast. The incision outlines the area from which the breast skin will be removed and defines the new location for the nipple. The nipple and areola are moved to a higher position with the removal of excess skin. The skin surrounding the areola is then brought down to reshape the breast. Maximal correction of the breast shape is possible but at the cost of more scarring.
Modified breast lift:
Patients with relatively small breasts and minimal sagging are candidates for a modified breast lift. This requires fewer incisions. One such procedure is the “doughnut mastopexy”, in which circular incisions are made around the areola, and a doughnut shaped of skin is removed.
After your surgery:
After surgery you will wear an elastic bandage or a surgical bra over gauze dressings. Your breasts will be bruised and swollen for a day or two. Pain will not be severe, which will be relieved with medication. The stitches will be removed after a week or two. If the breast skin is dry, use moisturizer several times a day. The numbness you feel in that area usually fades as the swelling subsides over the next six weeks or so.
Healing is a gradual process. Take it easy for a week or two. Lifting weights for three or four weeks should be avoided. Avoid strenuous sports for about a month. This operation will not affect your ability to breast feed, since your milk ducts and nipples will be left intact. You should remember that a breast lift won’t keep you firm forever. The effects of gravity, pregnancy, aging, and weight fluctuations will eventually take there toll again. Continue reading about breast lift recovery.