Elevate Your Body Confidence with Breast Lift Surgery

Published: August 6, 2019
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Category: Blog

Each year, thousands of breast augmentations are performed to give women the breasts they have always wanted, but what about the millions of women who are simply seeking the breasts they used to have? The effects of pregnancy, nursing, aging, and the sheer force of gravity can take a toll on the appearance of a woman’s breasts throughout her life. As the skin that encapsulate the breasts loses elasticity and supportive ligaments begin to stretch, the breasts can lose their fullness and firmness and begin to sag. Breast lift surgery, or mastopexy, is a surgical procedure that lifts a woman’s breasts back into a more youthful position.

“I literally didn’t recognize my breasts anymore after nursing three children,” says Carolyn, a 54-year-old mother. “I knew my breasts would change after pregnancy and breastfeeding, but I didn’t anticipate how much they would flatten, droop, and deflate,” she continues. “My push up bra collection gave the illusion of lift and fullness during the day, but at night, when I changed into my pajamas, I just felt so dissatisfied with my reflection in the mirror. I found myself missing the way my breasts used to look and feel,” says Carolyn. “After talking with my husband, I decided to call Edina Plastic Surgery to schedule a consultation to learn more about breast lift surgery.”

What happens during a breast lift surgery?

Mastopexy is typically a 1 ½ to 2 ½ hour surgery performed under general anesthesia. Although surgical techniques vary, the most common breast lift procedure involves making an anchor-shaped incision that follows the natural contour of the breast. This incision outlines the area from which excess breast skin will be removed. A circular incision is also made around the areola.

Once this skin has been removed, the nipple and areola are repositioned into a higher location on the breast. The skin surrounding the areola is then pulled down and together to reshape the breast and enhance lift and shape. Stitches are generally located around the areola, extending down from the nipple, and then across the lower crease of the breast.

In some instances, patients with smaller breasts and minimal sagging may be indicated for modified procedures that require less extensive incisions. An example of this a “doughnut,” or concentric mastopexy. During this procedure, circular incisions are made around the areola, and a doughnut-shaped quadrant of skin is removed. The remaining skin is then pulled into the center of the breast and sutures are placed around the areola. No vertical incision or incision to the lower fold of the breast is required.

In some cases, especially when added fullness is desired in the upper breast area, your surgeon will recommend breast implants in addition to your breast lift. Implants can provide added structure, support, and volume to the breasts. Having these two surgeries performed together is very common.

How do I know if I am a candidate for breast lift surgery?

The best candidates for breast lift surgery are healthy women who have realistic expectations about what this surgery can accomplish. When assessing breast tissue for sagging, or ptosis, a surgeon will note the positioning of the nipple. A nipple that is positioned at or above the breast fold is ideal. Nipples that fall below this fold and point downwards can benefit from breast lift surgery. Although any size breast can be lifted, best results are seen in women who have smaller, sagging breasts. Those with larger, heavier breasts may require additional surgery in the future to reposition the breast again. Unfortunately, no surgery can permanently offset the effects of gravity.

“There are so many factors that contribute to the results a woman will achieve with breast lift surgery,” explains Dr. Michael Philbin, a board-certified plastic surgeon with Edina Plastic Surgery. “Her age, whether or not she has had multiple pregnancies, if she has breastfed her children, and the current health of her breast tissue and skin,” he continues  “Surgery is quite customized to each woman and may include a higher degree of nipple relocation and the addition of breast implants to restore fullness and firmness. All of this is discussed in depth during your initial consultation in which measurements will be taken and all options discussed.”

What downtime is associated with breast lift surgery? Will I have scarring?

After breast lift surgery, your breasts may be swollen, bruised, and uncomfortable for three to five days, but the pain should not be severe and is easily managed by medication prescribed by your surgeon. You will be required to wear an elastic bandage or surgical bra over your dressings for several days following your surgery as well. Your surgeon will advise you on any restrictions to your movement, exercise, and heavy lifting during the weeks that follow your breast lift.

“Patients are naturally concerned about scarring after breast lift surgery,” says Dr. Philbin. “As surgeons, we make every attempt to keep scarring to a minimum, but it is inevitable with this particular surgery and very dependent on the skin of each patient,” he explains. “With proper care, many patients barely notice their breast lift scarring after the first year, especially when they diligently use topicals to fade and lighten the scarring. I remind patients that the most important aspect of breast lift surgery is achieving a more attractive shape and positioning for the breast.”

“I am ecstatic with my breast lift results,” exclaims Carolyn. “I just bought my first swimsuit this Summer that doesn’t have an underwire and padding in the bra,” she laughs. “During my consultation with Dr. Philbin he recommended adding implants to my surgery that would give me the fullness I desired,” she continues. “I hadn’t even realized that this was an option and love that my breasts appear full again and are soft and full, not flat to the touch. Although my breast lift makes me feel more attractive, I truly had this surgery for just for me. I simply wanted to feel confident and like ME again, and now I do!”

Are you a woman who is feeling dissatisfied with the appearance of your breasts? Our surgeons would love to discuss the multitude of surgical options we offer that can get you on the road to feeling confident about your appearance again! Call (952) 925-1765 to schedule a consultation.

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