Candidates for Breast Lift (Mastopexy) Surgery
The optimal candidates for breast lift surgery are healthy women who have realistic expectations with regards to their outcomes. Breasts of nearly any size and shape can be lifted. The breast lift surgery is for women who are fit for surgery and are otherwise in good health. If you smoke it is required to quit completely at least 6 weeks prior to surgery and at least 6 weeks after surgery.
Many women desire breast lifting because pregnancy and nursing have left them with stretched, inelastic skin and less breast tissue volume. Other women seek breast lifting after major loss. These women often describe their breasts as “deflated.” A mastopexy (breast lift) will tighten the skin of the breast, raises the position of the breast on the chest wall, raise the position of the nipple and areola on the chest wall, and reduce the areola diameter.
Many women seek breast lifting for deflation as mentioned above. Oftentimes, the issue is a deficiency of volume rather than “sagging” of the breasts. These women with smaller breasts and volume loss maybe a candidate for a breast implant alone without a lift.
The types of lifts are as follows:
- Crescent Breast Lift (Mastopexy): Patients who require a minimal amount of lifting of the nipple and areola may be a candidate for a crescent mastopexy. This lift removes a small moon-shaped area of skin directly above the nipple and areola. When closed the nipple and areola are moved higher on the breast giving lift. This procedure uses a small well-hidden incision directly around the top boarder of the areola that is extremely well hidden and heals beautifully.
- Periareolar Breast Lift (Mastopexy): This lift is also known as a concentric mastopexy, doughnut mastopexy, or Benelli Mastopexy. this technique often used in conjunction with an implant. A periareolar mastopexy is an excellent technique to tighten the skin of the front of the breast and reduce areolar diameter. It requires making a circular incision just around the boarder of the nipple areola. A “doughnut” area of skin is removed and the incision is closed giving a final scar around the areola itself. The scar usually heals beautifully and is located at the areolar boarder only. The final scar is very well hidden at the areolar boarder and is often barely visible after surgery.
- Vertical Breast Lift (Mastopexy): If the amount of excess skin and sagging exceeds the limits of these techniques a vertical lift or full-anchor pattern incision may be needed. The vertical lift incision pattern goes around the areola and nipple completely and includes a vertical incision straight down making a “lollipop” shape. The anchor pattern includes incisions used in a vertical lift plus a horizontal incision located in the crease beneath the breast along the chest wall.
- Full Mastopexy (Mastopexy): Dr. will recommend a full breast lift when the amount of excess skin and position of the nipple and areola exceeds to lifting power of the prior techniques. A full breast lift requires an incision around the areola, a vertical incision, and a horizontal incision tucked underneath the crease of the breast. The incision pattern is called an “anchor” pattern and has the shape of an upside down “T.” While this lift has the longest incision pattern, the resultant scars usually heal very well. Over time the scars fade and become less noticeable over time.