Most women develop some degree of breast ptosis, or “drooping,” in their lifetime as the breast tissue gradually loses firmness and elasticity. This pendulousness is mainly caused by the natural aging process, but can often be compounded by factors like genetic predisposition, pregnancy, breastfeeding, and/or weight fluctuation. Although changes in the appearance of the breasts are inevitable, they do not have to last forever. Dr. Tom Liu and Dr. Jerome Liu, our board-certified and fellowship-trained plastic surgeons, utilize advanced breast lift techniques to restore support for descended tissues and create more youthful, rejuvenated breast contours. At Silicon Valley Institute for Aesthetics (SVIA), each breast lift procedure is custom-tailored to an individual’s needs, preferences, and desires to achieve complete patient satisfaction.
What Can a Breast Lift Accomplish?
A breast lift, or mastopexy, can resolve many of the aesthetic concerns that affect the breasts over time, such as reduced fullness, firmness, and contours. The procedure is designed to restore internal support for the underlying ligaments that have stretched and weakened with age, thereby achieving a more shaped and “perky” appearance. Depending on your cosmetic goals, this highly popular breast surgery can:
- Reduce or eliminate breast sag
- Lift the breasts to a more youthful positioning on the chest wall
- Resculpt flat or “deflated” breasts
- Resize/reshape the areolas
In most cases, diminished breast fullness can be further improved by combining a breast lift with breast augmentation — a treatment plan often referred to as a “breast lift with implants.” This joint procedure can often benefit patients who desire a larger breast size in conjunction with more rejuvenated breast contours.
Who is a Candidate for a Breast Lift?
Breast lift surgery can be performed on healthy individuals who have a positive outlook on surgery and realistic expectations for the potential results. The procedure can be an excellent treatment choice for women who have undergone significant weight loss, or who have had children and would like to restore their pre-pregnancy breast contours. For certain patients, incorporating a breast lift into a more extensive Mommy Makeover may be able to better achieve their aesthetic goals.
During your consultation, Dr. Tom Liu and Dr. Jerome Liu will help ensure you are a good candidate for breast lift surgery by reviewing your medical history and asking you about your cosmetic goals. They will thoroughly explain the risks, benefits, and limitations of mastopexy, as well as help you with the decision-making process so you leave our office with a comprehensive understanding of the breast lift procedure.
How is the Breast Lift Procedure Performed?
A breast lift is an outpatient procedure performed under general anesthesia. Based on your goals and the extent of breast sag experienced, mastopexy can be completed using one of the following incisions:
- Periareolar Incision: Suitable for mild breast sag, the periareolar incision is confined within the borders of the areola. This allows any scarring to blend into the natural anatomic transition between the areola and breast skin.
- Vertical or “Keyhole” Incision: With this approach, an incision is made in a keyhole or lollipop-shaped pattern around the areola and vertically towards the breast fold. Patients with mild to moderate breast drooping may benefit from this technique.
- Inverted T or “Anchor” Incision: Also known as a full mastopexy, the anchor-shaped incision is best-suited for individuals with moderate to severe breast sag. This technique is similar to the vertical breast lift, except an additional horizontal incision is made along the breast crease to form an anchor-like incision pattern.
After your incisions are made, your plastic surgeon will remove excess breast skin and glandular tissue while reshaping your breasts to produce firmer contours. If necessary, the nipples and areolas can also be restored to a more forward positioning and/or reduced in size. The remaining skin is then tightened and incisions are closed. After a brief observation period, patients can continue their recovery from the comfort of their own home and with the help of a friend or loved one.
What is Recovery From a Breast Lift Like?
Bruising, swelling, and tenderness are expected after surgery, but these reactions should naturally resolve as your recovery progresses. Dr. Tom Liu or Dr. Jerome Liu will provide you with extensive post-operative instructions on how to care for your incisions, manage swelling and discomfort, and optimize the healing process. While most patients require three to seven days of downtime, many individuals are able to return to non-strenuous work responsibilities after four to five days. Strenuous activity and exercise are prohibited for approximately four weeks, or until your plastic surgeon advises otherwise. The results of your breast lift should improve as swelling subsides and your body continues to heal.
For more information on a breast lift, please contact SVIA to schedule a consultation with our plastic surgeons or to speak with a friendly member of our team.