Over the years, factors such as age, sun exposure, pregnancy, breast-feeding and weight loss take their toll on the elasticity of the skin of a woman’s breasts, causing the breasts to sag. The surgical procedure to correct this problem is called a mastopexy or breast-lift.
In addition to raising the breast, a breast lift may also make the pigmented area around the nipple (areola) smaller or enhance the volume of your breasts with a breast augmentation performed at the same time. If you are happy with the volume of your breasts then no further consideration should be given to augmentation, a breast lift alone will give a very pleasing result. Breast lift surgery is usually performed under general anesthesia but local with I.V. sedation may also be used for operative anesthesia. The procedure typically takes between two to three hours.
Surgical incisions used in your breast lift surgery will vary depending on the shape and location of the nipple and size of the breast. These incisions will be discussed with Dr. Brown in your preoperative consultation so that the best incision for your breast is used. Generally if a small amount of lift is required a nipple (periareolar) incision may be used. If more elevation of the nipple is required, a more extensive incision will be necessary such as a vertical, lollipop or inverted T. Once the incision is made, excessive breast skin is excised and the breast tissue and nipple are raised to a higher position on the chest wall and sutured in place. After surgery, patients may elect to stay overnight in Dr. Brown’s plastic surgery clinic, though most patients go home.
For several days after surgery you will be uncomfortable and your breasts may be bruised and swollen. The discomfort is easily managed with oral pain medication. The breasts are placed in a soft-support sports-type bra several days after surgery. This bra will be worn continuously for three to four weeks. You will be up and about in a day or two, but should plan on taking a week off of work. Normal activities, sex and exercise may be resumed gradually after two weeks. The surgical scars after breast lift surgery initially look very good but may become raised, red and lumpy after several weeks. They will gradually subside to a fine white line after approximately six months. The placement of the scars will not prevent you from wearing low-cut tops. Should you become pregnant in the future the breast lift surgery should not affect your ability to breast feed as the surgery does not affect the milk ducts and the nipples are left intact.
Dr. Brown in a double-board certified plastic surgeon specializing in breast lift surgery. To schedule a confidential consultation please contact our San Francisco office today.