Breast Lift

As women age, various factors such as pregnancy, breast-feeding and gravity can affect the shape of the breast. Over time, the loss of elasticity within the skin can cause the breasts to lose their shape and firmness and begin to sag. Breast lift surgery, also known as mastopexy, removes excess breast skin to raise, reshape and firm the breasts.

Who is a candidate for a breast lift?

The best candidates for breast lift surgery are healthy women with sagging breasts and loss of firmness. In some cases, the nipples and areolas also point downward. It is important that patients have realistic expectations as to what the surgery can accomplish. Breasts of any size can be lifted, but the results may not last as long in heavy breasts. At the time of your consultation, Dr. Brown will carefully check the size and shape of your breasts, the quality of your skin, and the placement of the nipples and areolas. If you are overweight, Dr. Brown may suggest that you stabilize your weight before having surgery.

What is involved in breast lift surgery?

The breasts will be tightened and reshaped so that they assume a rounder and more lifted appearance. It is usually necessary to reposition the nipples into a more elevated position and reduce the size of the pigmented areola. If there has been a loss of breast volume following pregnancy, or an increase in breast size is desired, breast implants can be inserted in conjunction with a breast lift to improve both the shape and size of the breasts. The operation is performed as a same day surgery under general anaesthesia. Most patients return to normal daily activities within 5-7 days, but are asked to avoid heavy physical activity and heavy lifting for 4-6 weeks.

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Risks and Complications

Mastopexy leaves permanent scars that can easily be covered by a bra or bathing suit. Typically, these scars are located around the areola and vertically straight down to the fold under the breast. Occasionally a scar in the crease under the breast will also be necessary. In smaller breasts, it is often possible to perform the procedure with fewer scars. Mastopexy complications include bleeding, infection and an adverse reaction to anaesthesia. Fortunately, these complications are uncommon. Women may notice a decreased sensation in the nipples and a slight asymmetry between the breasts. In general, complications are more likely in women who smoke. Of course, Dr. Brown will discuss these issues with you in detail at the time of your consultation.

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