The breast shape and size is effected by the number of pregnancies, breast-feeding and aging. During these events the breast tissue, which includes ligaments, skin, fat and breast gland stretch and sag. The breast tissue looses its support and tends to “sag” and “droop”. This causes more flattening on the upper aspect of the breast with movement of the breast tissue and nipples to a more un-natural and aesthetically lower location.
Before breast lift surgery
Prior to surgery, a medical history is taken in order to evaluate the general health of the patient. A careful examination is also conducted. A mammogram may be required pre-operatively. The physician and the patient discuss the type of anesthesia, the procedure, scar location, scar size, possible risks and complications. Pre-operative instructions may include the elimination of certain drugs and smoking habits.
Breast lift procedure
There are a variety of techniques available for breast lifting. Each procedure is individualized depending on the patient’s anatomy, breast size and shape, amount of drooping and the desired look and size. Minimal degrees of breast ptosis/sagging can sometimes be lifted with “doughnut” skin excision around the areola. The scar is circular shape around the areola (ring around the nipple). Second type of incision called “lollipop” where there is a circular incision around the areola as well as a vertical scar from the bottom of areola to the crease beneath the breast. The third type of incision called “anchor sign” where “lollipop” incision is accompanied by an incision under the breast at the natural crease level.
Once the loose skin is removed, the breast tissues along with the nipple are lifted to a higher natural position. If there is not enough breast tissue, a breast implant may be used to provide the desired volume to the breast.
Between 1½ to 2½ hours.
After breast lift surgery
There are going to be some restriction on the amount and the types of physical activities you may participate for the first 2-3 weeks. There may be a need for special bra to be worn for 2-6 weeks after the surgery to support the breast tissue. There is some discomfort associated with breast lift surgery. You may not be allowed to participate in sports especially contact sports for about 4-6 weeks. There may be some swelling and bruising after surgery, which may last for about 7-10 days.
Risk and complications
There are inherent risk and complications associated with breast lift surgery. These include, decrease, increase or loss of nipple sensation, scaring, bleeding, infection, hematoma, inability to breast feed, skin loss and possible drooping in the future. Patients can minimize risks and complications by carefully following instructions given by the surgeon and refraining from smoking at least 3 weeks before and 4 weeks after the surgery.