What is mastopexy?
Mastopexy – better known as “breast lift surgery” – is a cosmetic procedure that raises and firms the breasts by removing excess skin and tightening the surrounding tissue. Many women choose to have a breast lift procedure in order to regain the youthful shape and firmness of their breasts. Mastopexy may be performed to reverse the effects of pregnancy, breastfeeding, aging, gravity, weight changes, and heredity.
Breast lift surgery does not change the actual size of the breasts. Women who want to enlarge their breasts or otherwise alter their breasts’ actual shape and size may have a breast augmentation procedure performed in conjunction with mastopexy.
Who needs breast lift surgery?
Breast lift surgery is an elective procedure, which means that it is not medically necessary. Rather, it is the patient’s choice to have this surgery. That being the case, no one should pressure you into making the decision to have breast lift surgery. You should only have this procedure to fulfill your own goals and desires – not someone else’s image of how you should look. Ideal mastopexy candidates are:
- In good health and have a stabilized weight
- Realistic with their body image expectations
Many women who choose this procedure are bothered by sagging or loss of shape/volume in the breasts, have flat or elongated breasts, have downward-pointing, stretched, or enlarged areolas, or have asymmetric breasts. Any of these breast shapes and orientations may be corrected with breast lift surgery.
How Breast Lift Surgery Is Performed
Dr. Faibisoff typically performs breast lift surgery under general anesthesia at Mountain Vista Medical Center. One of the following three incisions may be made, depending on the objective of the breast lift procedure:
- Donut Lift: A periareolar incision is made around the areola. This may be used for correcting mild to moderate sagging. The procedure may be combined with breast implants.
- Lollipop Lift / Keyhole Incision: A periareolar incision is made, as well as a vertical incision that goes straight down to the breast’s natural crease. This approach tends to suit women with mild to moderate sagging – especially those who do not desire breast implants.
- Anchor Incision: A periareolar incision as made, as well as both the vertical incision and a horizontal incision that goes along the breast’s natural horizontal crease. This approach is usually reserved for severe breast sagging. Breast reductions are commonly performed in conjunction with the anchor incision.
Once the incision(s) have been made, excess breast skin may be removed, the tissue beneath the skin may be lifted or reshaped, and the nipple and areola may be repositioned and/or reduced in size. Dr. Faibisoff then closes the incisions with layered sutures, which tighten the skin and support the breasts’ new shape.
What should I do to prepare for mastopexy?
The medical staff at Four Peaks Plastic Surgery will provide you with all the information you need to prepare for your breast lift procedure. As with most any cosmetic surgery, it’s important to stop smoking at least several weeks before the procedure, and to avoid anti-inflammatory drugs and non-prescribed vitamins and supplements. Also, you may be advised to get a baseline mammogram so that you have a point of reference for comparing future breast changes and mammograms. Dr. Faibisoff and his staff will give you detailed information at your pre-op appointment. For more information about preparing for plastic surgery, download Your Guide to Cosmetic Surgery: 17 Plastic Surgery FAQs.
What is the recovery process like?
Recovering from mastopexy takes several days. During this time, patients need to take it easy and care for the incision sites with sterile surgical dressings. A surgical bra or elastic bandage should also be worn for support. These garments are necessary for several weeks. (Your surgeon will provide more detailed information.) Many women may be able to return to work after a week or so. Full recovery, however, can take five to six weeks or more.
How long will the results last?
You will be able to see the results of your breast lift surgery immediately after the procedure. As the post-op swelling reduces and incision lines fade, you will have a better idea of your body’s new look. The results of your surgery will be long lasting. You can maximize the lifespan of your breast lift my maintaining your weight and enjoying a healthy lifestyle. Breast lift surgery cannot protect against natural aging and sagging in the future. Some women may have a follow-up breast lift procedure later in life.