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What is a Breast Lift?
Breast lift surgery, also known as mastopexy, is performed by a surgeon on women who have sagging breasts. This procedure lifts the breasts and tightens the skin envelope. The areola may also be made smaller and some patients may require a breast implant as well to add volume. This is commonly performed after completing childbearing. The breast becomes engorged during pregnancy and then involutes after breastfeeding is completed. Like an overblown balloon that eventually loses air, the breast skin “stretches out” and often loses its elasticity, and the breast tissue volume shrinks. Breast laxity can also occur with fluctuations in weight as well as with aging. A mastopexy can improve the breast aesthetics by removing excess breast tissue and skin, while improving the breast shape.
Mastopexies have grown in popularity in recent years, with the American Society of Plastic Surgeons reporting that breast lifts have grown 114% in 2019 as compared to 2000.
Who is a good candidate for breast lift surgery?
A good candidate for a lift is a woman who is healthy, does not smoke, and has sagging breasts that desires an improvement to the breast shape and positioning. You can ask your doctor if you might be a good candidate.
How much does a breast lift cost?
The fee for this procedure will vary from plastic surgeon to plastic surgeon, and it will also depend upon if an implant is needed or not. The average runs between $8k-$15k.
What should I expect during a consultation for breast lift surgery?
During the consultation, you will spend a lot of time with the board certified plastic surgeon reviewing your surgical goals. An exam will then be performed and a surgical plan will be discussed with you at length.
What questions should I ask my plastic surgeon about breast lift surgery?
It’s vitally important you choose a board-certified plastic surgeon. You should ask if he/she is board certified first, and then discuss options for the lift you desire. You might want to ask whether or not you will need an implant as well, and which technique he/she feels will give you the best result with the least amount of scarring.
What are the risks of breast lift surgery?
The main risks of this surgery are unfavorable scarring, asymmetry, infection, bleeding, nipple loss, fat necrosis, fluid collections, dysesthesias, and need for revisions.
How should I prepare for breast lift surgery?
I tell my patients to eat a well-balanced diet and exercise regularly. I also want them to avoid any medications or supplements that may cause excessive bleeding.
How long does the procedure take?
Breast lifts usually take between two and four hours with a recuperation time of one to two weeks. Patients wear a support bra without an underwire or a sports type bra for about three to six weeks before they can go back to using an underwire bra. Dr. Wallach recommends that patients avoid aerobic type exercise for at least three weeks and strenuous exercise for at least six weeks after surgery. Dr. Wallach has presented his findings on limited access surgery combining breast augmentation with minor breast sagging in several peer-reviewed journals. He has also presented talks to other plastic surgeons on his preferred techniques for breast lift surgery. Dr. Wallach has also given an instructional course to fellow plastic surgeons on his preferred techniques at the American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS) national meeting.
What are the steps of a breast lift procedure?
The mastopexy procedure usually includes raising the nipple areola complex, maybe making the areola smaller, molding the breast tissue and sometimes reducing the volume oradding an implant for volume. Various skin patterns may be used based upon the extent of sagging and laxity.
What should I expect during my breast lift recovery?
Most patients can go back to light duty within 3-5 days. I have patients avoid aerobic type of activity for 3-4 weeks and then avoid exertion of heavy lifting for about 6-8 weeks.
What results should I expect after surgery?
The goal of surgery is to lift and tighten the breasts.
What words should I know about breast lift surgery?
Words include areola, nipple, skin incisions, lollipop or “T” incision, and pedicle.
What does the process of breast lift look like?
A patient goes through the consultation and then the procedure and has a recovery period that will vary depending upon the extent of the procedure.
There are three general skin design patterns for mastopexy. These are based upon the amount of skin that needs to be removed, the distance the nipple areola complex needs to be lifted to place it in an aesthetically pleasing position, the amount of breast tissue that needs to be removed or repositioned, and finally the volume, if any, that needs to be restored with a breast implant (see the breast augmentation section).
The three more common skin patterns include:
Wise Pattern Breast Lift
Looks like an inverted –”T” or an anchor after final closure. The Wise pattern places incisions along the inframammary border of the breast, a vertical incision from the fold up to the areola, and an incision around the border of the areola. For patients with poor skin quality and with significant breast ptosis, a Wise pattern skin incision would probably be most beneficial to achieve the desired result.
Vertical Breast Lift
Which looks like a “lollipop” incision. The vertical lift eliminates the inframammary incision, and the circumareolar breast lift eliminates both the vertical and inframammary incision. Dr. Wallach, a Manhattan New York Cosmetic Surgeon, will commonly employ a vertical lift technique (a modified LeJour technique) that minimizes the amount of scarring on the breast using a “lollipop-type” pattern that encompasses a circular incision around the areola with a lower breast vertical incision. This eliminates the use of a transverse incision along the lower breast fold that is placed as part of a more traditional “anchor type” procedure.
Circumareolar breast lift (Benelli breast lift)
The circumareolar breast lift only employs an incision around the areola. This procedure is for a very limited patient population that does not require the nipple areola complex to move too much. The tissue that supports the blood supply to the nipple areola complex can usually be brought on a leash of tissue commonly referred to as a pedicle from superiorly, inferiorly, medially, or laterally. This technique is usually reserved for patients with moderate breast ptosis (droop) and reasonably good skin elasticity. For this reason, most massive weight loss patients would not be good candidates for this technique because of the poor skin quality. But, for the majority of mastopexy patients in New York, this technique is an excellent choice.
Dr. Wallach will combine breast augmentation with a breast lift for those patients that desire an increase in volume as well as a lift and a better breast contour. In many cases, Dr. Wallach will limit the incision from this procedure by using either a “lollipop-type” pattern or a pattern designed only around the areola (circumareolar), further limiting the incisions. For massive weight loss patients in Manhattan NYC, Dr. Wallach has used all three types of skin incision designs to achieve nice results for his patients. Sometimes a breast augmentation alone can be performed to lift the breast for minor sagging.
“I believe true confidence comes from a feeling of self-assuredness from one’s inner self. However, I also believe that it is heavily impacted by a lack of confidence with one’s outside appearance as well. Plastic surgery can help improve confidence in this way. ”
Schedule a Consultation with a Board-Certified Plastic Surgeon
If you would like more information about New York Surgeon Dr. Wallach and his success with New York City mastopexy procedures, we hope that you will not hesitate to contact our Manhattan office at (212) 257-3263 or by mail at 1049 5th Avenue, Suite 2D in New York, NY 10028; or using our contact form to request additional details.
Breast Lift Frequently Asked Questions
Is a breast lift covered by insurance?
Does a breast lift cost more than implants?
Do I need a breast lift or just implants?
Does a breast lift leave scars?
Do you lose sensation with breast lift?
Does a breast lift make your nipples less sensitive?
Do you still have feeling in your nipples after breast lift?
Does insurance pay for breast lift?
How do you shower after a breast lift?
How long does it take for breast lift scars to heal?
How long do breast lift results last?
How long does a breast lift last?
How much does breast lift cost?
How long does a breast lift take?
How much is a mini breast lift?
How painful is a breast lift?
How soon after breast lift can I exercise?
Is getting a breast lift safe?
What is a crescent breast lift?
What types of breast lifts are there?
Will a breast lift reduce cup size?
Will a breast lift remove stretch marks?
Will breast lift affect breastfeeding?
Why do my breasts sag?
If I have a breast lift operation will I have a lot of scars?
What if I decide to have more children? Can I still have this surgery?
What kind of incision will I need for a breast lift?
Can I just have a lift around the border of my areola?
What is a vertical breast lift?
Who requires a u201cTu201d incision breast lift?
Will I need an implant with my breast lift?
If my breasts are slightly saggy can I just get breast implants?
Is a breast lift procedure the same as a breast reduction procedure?
Will I need drains after a breast lift procedure?
What is the recovery like after a breast lift procedure?