What is the deciding factor between the lollipop and anchor incisions?

I know the difference is the cut but why would a doctor pick one over the other if the patient didn't have a preference?

Doctor Answers 6

What is the deciding factor between the lollipop and anchor incisions?

I endeavor to give the best shape with the smallest scar in every case and in every surgery.  In most cases, I can utilize the vertical lift.   However, in vertically long breasts, the addition of the horizontal incision placed under the breast may be necessary to reduce the vertical length of the breasts.

I Prefer the Lollipop Incision

A mastopexy or breast lift operation is designed to improve the shape and position of the breast without reducing their size. It is used for breasts which sag or droop (ptosis). Sagging of the breasts may occur with normal development for some women, or as part of the aging process. Pregnancy, breast-feeding and weight loss are other conditions which increase breast ptosis. Some patients will have a better shape to their breast such as increased superior fullness if an implant is used at the time of mastopexy. The procedure can also be combined with a minor breast reduction to reduce the breast width if desired. The surgery will create an elevated, more youthful breast contour. Also, the procedure will create nipple and areolae of the desired size and at the correct height.

I prefer to use a #shortscar technique, #LollipopScar or #DonutLift” rather than the majority of surgeons in the United States that use an anchor pattern lift which involve more significant scarring.

Jed H. Horowitz, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 96 reviews

Breast Lift: Droopiness determines need for anchor or lollipop incision

Deciding when to use the lollipop vs. the anchor is dependent on how droopy or (ptotic ) the breasts are. The distance from the nipple to the crease under the breast sometimes needs to be shortened. For mild to moderate droopiness, less shortening is needed and the bunching of tissue under the breasts is minimal. In these cases, the lollipop incision would be fine. For moderate to severe droopiness, more shortening of the distance is needed, and there would be too much bunching of the tissue under the breasts. In these cases, the anchor incision is better because the part of the incision under the breast reduces the bunching. Hope this information clarifies the  process. To read more details of the anchor lift, click on the link below. For more information on this and similar topics, I recommend a plastic surgery Q&A book like "The Scoop On Breasts: A Plastic Surgeon Busts the Myths." 

Ted Eisenberg, DO, FACOS
Philadelphia Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 61 reviews

Lollipop Lift Versus Anchor Lift - Deciding Factor

There are many deciding factors. One is the amount of ptosis and amount of extra skin of the breasts. Another is surgeon comfort and skill - almost all plastic surgeons are comfortable performing some type of anchor lift/reduction. Fewer are comfortable with the lollipop lift/reduction, so that may lead to some bias when giving alternatives to patients.

Millicent Odunze-Geers, MD, MPH
Sacramento Physician
4.6 out of 5 stars 5 reviews

Lollipop vs anchor

Cooper3168,

The difference can be subtle.  With very large volume reductions, there tends to be a large amount of excess skin that needs to be removed - so the anchor incision allows the surgeon to remove skin in a vertical dimension as well as the horizontal dimension afforded by the lollipop.  Also - with the lollipop incision design, the excess skin is somewhat pleated under the breast, which tends to smooth out with time.  If you have too much skin, it may not smooth out completely.  Likewise if you are older and have less elastin in your skin, the pleating may remain.  Lastly is the comfort and experience of the surgeon.  No matter whom you choose, you want the operation they are the best at and most comfortable with.  Many of us are equally comfortable with either approach, but not everyone has had the opportunity to train on multiple techniques.  If you have no preference, I recommend you go with the surgery your doctor recommends.  Best of luck!

M. Renee Jespersen MD

M. Renee Jespersen, MD
Arlington Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 4 reviews

Lollipop vs anchor

The amount of breast sagging is one deciding factor.  The other deciding factor is how much of a tolerance you have for waiting it out to get your final result.  The skin is pleated under the breast after the lollipop lift is performed and eventually smooths out over 3-6 months.

Sheila S. Nazarian, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 51 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.