What are the stages of ptosis? Are implants enough to correct in early stages? (Photo)

How can I know what stage ptosis I am? I had an initial consultation and told I am 'borderline'. Will implants alone give me a fuller, younger appearance, and not just leave me with larger, saggy breasts immediately? I am currently a 'C' cup, 5'11, 150lbs, with a long torso. I have my first consultation with a doctor tomorrow and this is a question I will ask, just looking for more opinions, if possible from these photos. Thanks ladies & gentlemen!

Doctor Answers 15

Breast Implants

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Hi MMFA (fun name),
Please put an index card in your breast fold. If your nipple is at the edge of the card or below, then you would be a candidate for a lift, either a vertical or anchor or areolar incision. If your nipple is above the edge, you could be a candidate for an internal lift called the dual plane. The video below explains the dual plane internal lift. I believe the dual plane and implants alone will do it for you, and that you will not need a lift. Be sure to seek a consultation with a BC PS to be sure. I believe the dual plane will do it.  You may only have "pseudoptosis" not actual ptosis, so try this.  See links and video below.  All the best, “Dr. Joe”

Breast augmentation and possible lift later if needed

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Your nipple position is below the fold and implant alone may not be enough. I would recommend my patient with similar breasts augmentation with high profile implants/dual plane . The decision about the lift can be made after few months if breast position is too low.

Kamran Khoobehi, MD
New Orleans Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 152 reviews

Ptosis stage

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Hello, a commonly used ptosis category is the following:
Stage I = nipple at level of the inframammary fold (IMF), which is the crease under the breast
Stage II = nipple below the level of the IMF but not at the lowest point of the breast
Stage III = nipple at the lowest part of the breast.

What are the stages of ptosis? Are implants enough to correct in early stages?

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Thank you for your question.  By your photo, it appears that you have grade 1 ptosis. Although it is not severe, the result you get with an implant alone will likely not be as good as an implant with some degree of lift. It may be that you only require a circumareolar lift but you may need some tightening of the lower pole as well which would cause the scar to be taken vertically down toward the fold below the breast. The degree of lift required can be determined in the operating room once the implant has been placed. I would discuss these options with your board certified plastic surgeon prior to surgery.

What are the stages of ptosis? Are implants enough to correct in early stages?

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There are 3 stages of breast ptosis and you are between grade 1 and 2. In your situation, implants alone will enlarge your breast and fill out the upper part of your breast, but they will not elevate the lower portion of your breast. You most likely won't sag more early on, but your breast will still sit low on your torso, just with more fullness in the upper part. 
If you want your breast to have a more perky appearance, a breast lift with an implant will achieve this goal.


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Thanks for writing,
I think many of the previous answers covered the concept of ptosis for you. I believe that depending on the size of the implant and the projection of the implant you choose will to a degree determine the need for a lift. Based on your photos, if you pick and implant proportional to your size, i.e. waist, hips chest wall etc. then you probably will need a lift. There are many ways to do lifts and I think you can be surprised at the quality of scar.
To truly get the best answer an in person evaluation will serve you well. I would strongly recommend a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon. Don't be fooled with all the other sound alike Boards and non-trained Plastic Surgeons.

Good Luck

Stephen M. Davis, MD, FACS
Green Hills Plastic Surgery
Nashville, Tennessee


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Thank you for your question. An in-person consultation will be the most useful to determine options for you. Your Plastic Surgeon will take careful measurements of your breasts and assess your skin/tissue. If your areolas have descended to the crease or below- you will likely need a lift in order to achieve the shape/look that you want.

Be sure to seek a board certified Plastic Surgeon with plenty of experience in this area,

All the best

What are the stages of ptosis? Are implants enough to correct in early stages? (Photo)

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Based on the photos, I would suggest an augmentation first. Once things settle, you will most likely be more than satisfied with your appearance. If not, then you could get the breast lift at a later date. Good luck!

The stages of ptosis.

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We can describe the amount of breast ptosis by the position of the nipple relative to the breast fold. However there are no "stages" as ptosis does not necessarily progress. Breast shape can be as much influenced by what we inherit. With your nipple at the breast fold many would call this a grade I ptosis, though the solution will depend on your preference for breast shape, and your tolerance of a breast scar. Implants might just be enough for you.

Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 44 reviews

What are the stages of ptosis? Are implants enough to correct in early stages?

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Thank you for your question and photographs.  Stage of ptosis depends on the position of your nipple relative to your breast crease.  Stage I has the nipple at the level of your crease, Stage II has your nipple below the level of your crease but not at the lowest point of your breast, Stage III has your nipple below your breast crease and at the lowest portion of your breast.  The "need" for a breast lift is best determined on key breast measurements as well as your nipple position relative to your breast crease when standing straight.  That said, your desired breast appearance will play the largest role on whether a lift will be needed to approximate your desired results.  Be sure to see a board certified plastic surgeon in consultation.  

Nelson Castillo, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 80 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.