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What is a Breast Lift?
A woman’s breasts can lose their youthful shape over time for a number of reasons. Gravity, pregnancy, breast feeding, and genetics can all gradually cause undesireable changes in the breast contour. Loss of skin elasticity and breast volume contribute to the loss of firmness and sagging appearance. Breast lift, or mastopexy, is a surgical procedure to reshape and lift the breast back to its more youthful contour. If your areola (the darker skin around the nipple) is too large, breast lift surgery can reduce it’s size. Breast implants can be placed with a breast lift procedure. This is often done to correct a loss of breast volume which often happens after pregnancy.
individual results may vary
Reshaping your breasts to more attractive and youthful contour can improve your appearance and self-confidence. The best candidates for mastopexy are healthy, emotionally-stable women who are nonsmokers and are realistic about what breast lift surgery can accomplish: a more youthful and attractive breast shape and contour, but with the tradeoff of a scar.
Is Breast Lift or Mastopexy Right for You?
It is very common for women to want to correct changes in their breast contour after pregnancy. If you are planning to become pregnant again, you may wish to postpone breast lift surgery as the new pregancy may again cause stretching of the breast tissue and loss of volume, offsetting the results of the surgery.
Your Breast Lift Consultation with Dr. Weinrach
During your consultation, it is important to discuss your expectations openly and honestly with Dr. Weinrach. Every patient has different anatomy and a different view of what is a desirable size and shape for her breasts. It is important for Dr. Weinrach to have a clear understanding of the look that you would like to achieve. Dr. Weinrach will be equally open and honest with you in recommending the best procedure to try and achieve that goal.
Dr. Weinrach will review your medical history, and examine your breasts and take measurements of them. He will thouroughly discuss your specific issues that affect the procedure. Your age, breast size and shape, skin quality, and potential need for an implant are all factors that contribute to planning. Dr. Weinrach will show you the new position of the nipple and areola, as they will be lifted in to a higher position.
Dr. Weinrach will explain the procedure in detail, including its risks and limitations and will show you where the scars will be. He will also explain the anesthesia to be used, the type of facility where the surgery will be performed, and the costs involved.
Please do not hesitate to ask Dr. Weinrach any questions you may have.
Before Your Breast Lift Surgery
Dr. Weinrach may require you to have a mammogram (breast x-ray) before surgery, depending on your age and family history. You will also be given instructions on how to prepare for surgery, including which medications to take or avoid, and when to stop eating and drinking before surgery.
As you will not be able to drive home after your surgery, please make arrangements for someone to drive you home.
Where Your Breast Lift will be Performed
Safety is always Dr. Weinrach’s number one priority. He only operates in accredited surgery centers and hospitals. He has hospital priviledges for every procedure he does. Mastopexy is usually done on an outpatient basis. Individual circumstances may involve an overnight stay.
Types of Anesthesia for Breast Lift
Breast lifts are usually performed under general anesthesia, which means you will sleep through the operation. In selected patients–particularly when a smaller incision is being made–Local anesthesia combined with a sedative to make you drowsy may be used.
How a Breast Lift is done
Mastopexy usually takes one and a half to three and a half hours. Techniques vary depending on the amount of skin excess present as well as the starting volume and skin quality of the breasts. Incisions are made to remove areas of excess breast skin and to place the nipple and areola in their new position. These incisions are carefully designed to they are as inconspicuous as possible after everything has healed. After removal of the excess skin, the nipple and areola are lifted into their new, higher position. The breast tissue and remaining skin are reshaped and secured into their new position with stiches. The final position of the incisions are usually located around the areola and in a vertical line from the areola down to the breast crease. A horizontal incision in the breast crease may be required for patients with a relatively large excess of skin.
In some circumstances, such as when the breasts are smaller or when there is a relatively small amount of excess skin and less lift needed, a procedure creating much smaller scars can be done. This kind of lift, sometimes called a “doughnut”, “concentric”, “circumareolar” or “periareolar” mastopexy, involves a final scar around the areola only.
If an implant is to be placed at the same time as your breast lift, it will almost always be placed under the muscle of the chest wall.
After Your Breast Lift
After surgery, your breasts will be covered with gauze dressings and a surgical bra or elastic bandage. There is a normal amount of swelling and bruising to be expected. Dr. Weinrach will prescribe for you medication for any discomfort you may feel
Dr. Weinrach will see you the next day after your surgery and make sure everything is progressing as planned.
Getting Back to Normal after your Breast Lift
You will be up and walking after your surgery. Light activity is encouraged in the days following your breast lift. Most patients feel up to returning to light work after about one week. You should avoid heavily lifting or lifting anything over your head for several weeks. If you have any unusual symptoms, please do not hesitate to call Dr. Weinrach.
Your New Look
Dr. Weinrach will make every effort to make your scars as inconspicuous as possible. However, it is important to remember that mastopexy scars are permanent. While certainly noticeable immediately after surgery, with time they gradually become less obvious, sometimes eventually fading to thin white lines. The scars are designed to they are low on the breast, so they are not visible when wearing low-cut tops.
You should also keep in mind that a breast lift will not last forever–the effects of gravity, pregnancy, aging, and weight fluctuations will likely eventually take their toll. Even so, the great majority of women are very pleased with their decision to have a breast lift.