Is a Specialist for Ethnic Skin Required for Breast Lift?

Hi Surgeons! I am considering having a Breast Lift and was wondering if I need a surgeon who specializes in mixed race skin?

I have always been told our skin heals differently to white skin because it's thicker and wonder if this is true and what effect it will have on how well my scars will fade. Many thanks.

Doctor Answers 10

Ethnic skin breast lift

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When it comes to breast lift, the healing process will depend on your post-op care, and how well your body heals after surgery.

After years of experience with patients from all over the world, I have learned that the color of your skin doesn't really make the difference in this kind of surgery. Small recovery delays like keloid Scarring could happen in any skin type and color. 

The importance of taking care of these delays and detecting them in time is the key to a great surgery outcome.

Mexico Plastic Surgeon
4.4 out of 5 stars 257 reviews

Need a cosmetic breast surgery expert, race does not matter

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When it comes to breast surgery, skin color does not matter.  (It does matter when it comes to facial resurfacing.)  Any plastic surgeon who is very experienced has treated many people of all races.  There are no special considerations.  True, black patients may have a higher risk of keloids, but the vast majority of blacks heal with nice scars.  If you have a keloid history you know that already whether you are white, black, or brown.  If you have had previous surgery with nice scars, no problem after ear piercing, and no keloids after childhood trauma, you are likely going to heal with acceptable scars.  You can look at results of breast lift surgery on various races on my website.

Eric Swanson, MD
Kansas City Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 62 reviews

Breast Lift and “Ethnic Skin”?

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No, you do not need to find a “specialist” for “mixed race skin”. You should however do your due diligence and find a well experienced board certified plastic surgeon who can show you significant experience helping patients like yourself.

Best wishes.

Mixed racial skin for breast lift

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While some patients' skin can be tricky to deal with in terms of developing hypertrophy or keloids, most plasitc surgeons deal with patients of different skin types pretty frequently.  You really do not have to search out a "special" surgoen for this.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Ethnic Skin

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Any plastic surgeon can operate on any skin type. There is no such thing as a specialist for a certain skin type. Plastic surgeons are experts on surgery of all types of skin.

No matter what your skin type is, the surgery will be performed the exact same way.

John Diaz, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 34 reviews


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A plastic surgeon can deal with all types of skin of all ethnic people. Although to tell you the truth - asians scar the worst. After that most healing is variable.

William B. Rosenblatt, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

A plastic surgeon is the right specialist.

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Plastic surgery training deals with the management of all skin types on all areas of the body. Some skin types are quite challenging and you need to listen to your surgeon as he or she explains some of the possible healing issues particular to your skin type.

Mixed race skin will have more chance to have irregular coloration around the scars as well as thickening of the scars. Go over these concerns with your surgeon and you will be able to make the right choice.

Best Wishes

Dr. Peterson

Marcus L. Peterson, MD
Saint George Plastic Surgeon

Ethnic skin specialist

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I do not believe you need a specialist in ethnic skin.  A good surgeon is a good surgeon. Most surgeons do not have control over how any type of skin heals but will be sensitive to healing, placement of incisions, supplemental treatment for pigmentation and hypertrophic scar problems, etc.

Robin T.W. Yuan, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon

Ethnic skin needs clean surgery

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Breast lifts can lead to unhappy patients because of the scarring. Good surgery does not eliminate the risks of hypertrophic scarring. A lot of scarring is based in genetics. However, good techniques can certainly lead to good results -- or at least better results.

Robert M. Freund, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 34 reviews

Specialist for ethnic skin and Breast lifts and Reductions

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Ethnic skin can have challenges with scarring. Fair white skin tends to fade well with time. If you have another skin type: Latina, Filipino, Black, Asian, will it heal as well?

Any surgeon who trained in a breast fellowship and has done a lot of breast surgery (which is many of us. breast reductions and lifts are a common surgery we all do), has operated on women of color. Being a plastic surgeon in the Bay Area, many of my patients are different ethnicities. I don't think anyone "specializes" in ethnic skin. If they say they do, then it is a bit of marketing PR, as all of us see many different skin types.

1. Short scar technique. There are two basic kinds of major breast lifts. One leaves you with a large anchor scar, the inferior pedicle / Wise technique. The second leaves you with a lollipop scar, the vertical technique.

Find someone who does the vertical technique. It is a much smaller scar, and it is missing the long underwire scar. When doing the anchor inferior pedicle scar, the part of the scar which tends to keloid is the inner part of the underwire scar. The lollipop scar has none of that, Shorter scar. No scar near midline. And it has a better shape.

2. Technique for skin closure: Look at the scars from other lift patients. How do they look? A multi layer, good closure is important for any scar on any skin type.

3. What is your surgeon's scar plan? Tape, mederma, silicone gel sheeting, hydroquinone, etc etc. Talk with them about your concerns.

Hope this helps!

Lauren Greenberg, MD
Palo Alto Plastic Surgeon

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.