I am a 1-year post op bariatric patient. After losing 90 lbs on a 4'11" frame, my breasts have gone from a DDD to a B, with LOTS of excess skin that still fills a C/D-cup bra! I recently had my 1st plastic surgery consult, and I am now VERY concerned about scarring. What's the best technique to reduce scarring as much as possible on African American skin? My skin does not keloid; however my scars from the bariatric surgery are VERY dark after 1 year. Is the full-anchor technique my only option?
Best Mastopexy Technique for African Americans?
Doctor Answers 6
A Breast Lift Can Greatly Enhance your Look after Weight Loss
Contratulations on your significant weight loss! I understand that you are considering a breast lift to restore a more youthful look to the breasts. I have some thoughts which may assist you.
When a woman loses a significant amount of weight, the breast usually deflates and falls. In thinking about correction, we first look to see if there is enough volume of breast tissue to give the desired fullness after surgery. If there is enough breast tissue, but just too much skin, we may offer a lift without an implant. This procedure can be done with a vertical type lift or a full lift. The vertical lift avoids a scar beneath the breast in the crease, but only certain patients are good candidates.
If a woman desires more breast volume and a lift in a deflated breast, an implant with a lift is often the best approach. In many cases, this can be done with a vertical type lift, again, sparing a scar in the breast crease. If your plastic surgeon has not offered this approach, it may be useful to get other opinions.
I hope this helps you have a basic understanding of your options, and good luck!
Best Mastopexy for African American Patient?
Congratulations on your significant weight loss; you should be very proud of this accomplishment. As you can imagine it is not possible to give you precise advice without direct examination and/or viewing pictures. Unfortunately, most patients who have had 90 pound weight loss do have significant loose/low breast skin necessitating full breast lifting for optimal results.
Most patients (If properly selected and who are doing the operations at the right time of their lives) accept the scars associated with breast augmentation/breast lifting surgery as long as they are happy with the improvement in contour, size, and symmetry. This acceptance of the scars is the essential “trade-off” associated with many of the procedures we do and the field of plastic surgery.
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Best Mastopexy Technique for African Americans
With as much volume as you have lost and as much excess skin that you have, it is not likely that anything short of a full anchor pattern lift will give you a successful lift. You will probably have hyperpigmented scars as you have from your bariatric procedure.
The breast lift does a few things.
- reposition the nipple and areola
- reposition the breast tissue
- remove excess skin
Incisions are needed for all of these. Sometimes, if all that is needed is small elevation of the nipple and areola on each side, and incision around the areola will suffice. But when there is a lot of skin excess is present, vertical and horizontal incisions are needed to remove the excess. The pattern of incision is designed to be as favorable as possible, but these are scars.
You will need to balance the expected improvement with the expected scarring and decide if the benefits outweigh the risks.
Thanks and best wishes.
It is difficult to make any recommendations without a physical exam. However, if you have lots of severe sagging and loose skin, you will likely need a breast lift first. The basic principle with any breast lift is that you have to accept some degree of scar to achieve that much better shape and form. There are several breast lift techniques out there that will help you achieve a great result. Please visit with a board certified plastic surgeon to learn more about your options. Best wishes.
Choices for breast lifting technique are limited in massive weight loss situations
and as happy as I am that you were able to lose your weight, I am afraid you really don't have a choice as to what scars you will have after your procedure. Attempts to limit the scar initially will only result in the need for later revisions that would extend your scarring across the bottom of your breasts.
Unfortunately, your only real choice here is whether to have the surgery or not. Surgery will bring the potential for scarring that you will simply have to accept in your situation. You can certainly try all the anti-scar products to improve your chances for a happy outcome. Best wishes!