BREAST LIFT - Your Questions Answered by: Dr. Vincent Lepore

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Here’s what patients tell us: You like the way your breasts look in a bra- but not so much, when the ‘support system’ is removed.

Whether it’s a question of restoring what you had, or changing the degree of uplift nature gave you, there is help, in the form of Breast Lift,  Breast Augmentation, or a combination of both.
Everyone seems to know the basics about Breast Augmentation – it’s a surgical way of enlarging, and/or reshaping breasts.

But Breast Lift—brings up some additional questions; the main ones,

  • How do I know if I need a Breast Lift?
  • When should I have one?
  • What can you do to make (them) better—or, the way they used to be?
Women start asking these questions when they’ve achieved some milestones in life-

  • Having children
  • Significant Weight Loss
  • Aging
Or- they may be young, and without children, but may have breasts that are not symmetrical.
  • One breast is noticeably higher than the other.
Sagging, loss of volume, change in shape and firmness, uneven size, shape, or alignment. Those are the concerns that most often bring someone into my San Jose Plastic Surgery office to discuss the options available. That discussion usually includes more questions, not just about lifting the breasts, but what else can breast lift surgery do?

  • Will a Breast Lift make the breasts fuller?
  • Can a Lift make them smaller?
The answer to both of those questions is, no.

Breast Lift (Mastopexy) will not increase the size of your breasts, or decrease the amount of tissue in the breast. For those results, consider combining Breast Lift surgery with either Breast Augmentation or Breast Reduction. They can, and usually are, performed at the same time, in a single surgical session.

*Many women expect that Breast Lift will restore or create volume in the upper pole (top half) of the breast. It may help. But, a breast lift with an implant will result in greater upper pole fullness.

Women who have completed their family, are likely to have a longer-lasting result with a breast lift, since breast feeding, and the weight fluctuations of child-bearing have such an effect on breast shape and elasticity.

If you’ve carefully studied information on Breast Lift, and decide, with the advice of your Board-Certified Plastic Surgeon- that it’s the procedure you want, here is what you should expect:

WHAT BREAST LIFT CAN DO:

  • If your ‘before’ look includes sagging, “deflation” due to breast feeding or weight loss, and an altered breast shape as a result, a Breast Lift will restore your breasts to a more ‘natural’ position.
  • The Breast Lift procedure also suspends the breast tissue, creating a kind of “bra” out of your own tissue, providing support to help prevent further sagging in the future.
  • Your breasts will be firmer.
  • Your breast contour will be more shapely.
  • If the areolas have become stretched or enlarged, their size can be reduced.
  • Breast asymmetry can be corrected.
WHAT TYPE OF BREAST LIFT SHOULD YOU HAVE?

This question is extremely important. There are different approaches to Breast Lift, depending on your particular anatomy, and the best result for your body. We’re emphasizing this because it’s important for you to understand. Breast Lift, like any surgery, involves scar formation. The different types of Breast Lift, produce varying degrees of scarring. Please don’t believe that you can say; “I’d like the Breast Lift with the smallest scar” – and hope to achieve the result you want. You should take your Plastic Surgeon’s advice on which method will produce the lifted, firmer, and shapelier breasts you want.

Here are the terms used to describe the most-used techniques and incisions for Breast Lift:

  • ANCHOR LIFT – The incision is made around the areola, and then down, vertically, from the center to the breast crease. It’s extended horizontally along the crease. This approach is used when there is significant sagging, and creates the most scarring.
  • LOLLIPOP LIFT – This is also referred to as a “Keyhole” incision. (All terms used here, describe the scar shape) The Lollipop incision is made around the areola, and then proceeds down, stopping at the breast crease. This incision is used for women with more moderate sagging.
  • DONUT LIFT – We also call this a “Periareolar Lift” – with the incision made around the areola only.
ABOUT SCARRING

The scarring produced by any of the breast lift techniques, will be hidden in a bra, or bikini top. Remember, any ‘cut’ to the skin will produce a scar. Procedures with fewer incisions/scar, result in less lift. Your incision lines will fade over time, and often become unnoticeable. Board Certified Plastic Surgeons are trained to create the most minimal scarring possible, but no surgeon can eliminate a scar completely.

The take-home message, though, is to have an open discussion with your surgeon about what is right for you, and what method is best to achieve your cosmetic goal.

Breast Lift is a very popular procedure. According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), the number of breast lifts performed has risen 70% since the year 2000.

Breast Lift patients often combine their surgeries with Mommy Makeover, Tummy Tuck, or Breast Augmentation surgeries.

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San Jose Plastic Surgeon