A breast lift, also known as mastopexy, is a surgical procedure designed to lift the breast to a higher, more youthful position while restoring shape and firmness. As with all our procedures, the goal is to improve the patient’s happiness, self esteem, and quality of life.
Many different techniques for performing this surgery are practiced today. While some are better than others, all have the same goal in mind.
- Donut mastopexy, also known as periareolar mastopexy, is a breast lift done by removing skin only from around the areola.
- Vertical mastopexy, or LeJuer mastopexy, is a breast lift that removes extra skin around the areola and downwards in a vertical line.
- Wise skin pattern mastopexy is a breast lift that results in an inverted “T” scar pattern.
Donut and vertical mastopexy are called short scar techniques, as they seek to limit the scar on the breast. However, they are not utilized often, as these procedures have many limitations in their ability to address loose and sagging skin. The wise skin pattern mastopexy allows for the most flexibility in creating a higher, firmer, more youthful-looking breast.
Mastopexy can be performed with or without an implant under the breast tissue. Often, women desire not only a higher and firmer breast, but also the restoration of a more youthful fullness at the top, and small implants may help in accomplishing this goal. Dr. Bortnick has over 20 years of expertise in cosmetic breast surgery and will be able to address your individual needs during your consult.
Am I a Good Candidate For a Breast Lift?
Mastopexy can be a very gratifying surgery for women seeking to regain shape, balance and firmness to their breasts because of aging. Aging may be a result of chronological aging, breast feeding or weight loss; all three can contribute to deflation and descent of the breast.
While a breast lift can restore firmness and shape, it cannot stop the inevitable changes of time, and predicting the onset of aging is impossible. One can expect that with time, the breasts will drop again to some degree, as aging is normal. Good candidates understand that a mastopexy will result in scarring, and may need touch-up surgeries.
For all elective surgeries, we recommend:
- Patients must be aware of the known negative effects of any surgery, including pain, cost, recovery time, scarring and the known risks of surgery.
- Patients should lead a healthy lifestyle and be healthy both medically and emotionally. Any surgery is a trauma to the body, so it is important to be in good health before the procedure.
- Patients should be at a point in their lives where inconveniences to job responsibilities and family obligations are minimized.
- It is imperative that cosmetic surgery patients be non-smokers, as nicotine delays the healing process.
Additionally, for breast lift procedures, we recommend:
- Patients should be at or near their ideal body weight
- Patients should have already had any children they plan on having.
What should I expect during the consultation?
During the consultation, be prepared to spend 45 minutes with Dr. Bortnick and his staff. Be prepared to review your medical history, including all past surgeries, medications and allergies. Your family history may be important as it relates to breast health and disease, we will require a current mammogram. You may contact the office prior to your consult for a mammogram referral at any time. More information about our procedures, including consent forms, pre-operative and post-operative care instructions and medications to avoid, are available on in the Patient Resources section of our site.
Your examination will take place standing in front of a dressing mirror. It is important to see the effects of gravity prior to surgery in order to make an accurate operative plan. Your breasts will be examined, including detailed measurements of size and shape, and any asymmetries will be brought to your attention, so that if possible they can be corrected at the time of surgery.
Recommendations will be given to you whether the use of an implant will be necessary for optimal outcome as well as the scar pattern to be used. You will be given a detailed estimate of your financial obligations, including costs of the hospital and anesthesia as well as surgeon’s fees. If you decide to have surgery you will be asked to review the informed consent documents and gather any questions that you may have. A second consultation with the nurse coordinator will allow you further time to consider your options.
How is the surgery performed?
Breast lift surgery is always performed under general anesthesia in an accredited surgery facility, and the procedure takes approximately two hours. You should arrive one hour before your scheduled surgery time, which allows time to visit with the anesthesiologist and collect routine lab data including blood count and pregnancy tests. Surgical marks for alteration and tightening of the skin may be placed on he breast prior to going to sleep. (This is not always done and depends on whether an implant is used and the type of lift being performed.)
During the surgery, if a breast implant is used it will be placed during the first stage. After the volume of the augmented, enhanced breast is finalized, sutures that help lift and shape the breast gland from the inside are placed. In the last stage, the marked skin is removed and tightened. The nipple and areola are not ever removed from the breast, and will be repositioned without damaging blood supply or sensation. Your first follow up appointment is the day following surgery. After that visit you may shower and should be able to quickly resume most of your daily activities.