What is it?
Breast lift. Mastopexy.
As the name suggests, this surgical procedure aims to raise the breasts.
This may be an option for you if:
- Your breasts sag
- One breast hangs lower than the other
- Your nipples point downward
- Your areolae have stretched out disproportionately to your breasts
Over time, breasts change and lose their firmness. Apart from age, you may also notice these changes during pregnancy and weight changes.
If this is something you’re interested in, read on!
Here are a few risks you should be aware of.
Scars. You can expect them to fade within a year or two, but they won’t go away completely.
Uneven breasts. Sometimes, changes during the healing process post-surgery might make the breasts uneven in size and/or shape.
Changes in sensation to the breast or nipple. This is usually temporary, lasting a few weeks. Although some sensory loss can be permanent.
Breastfeeding difficulty. Most people are okay in this respect after surgery, but issues producing enough milk have been reported in some cases.
Damage to the nipples or areolae. Rarely. This is caused by the blood supply to the area briefly cutting off during the surgery, resulting in a partial or total loss of the nipple or areolar.
What to know before you go ahead
Read this if you’re planning to become pregnant. It’s best to wait until you’re done being pregnant before getting a breast lift. This is because your breasts are likely to stretch during pregnancy and mess up the results of the surgery.
Size matters. But it’s not everything. Having said that, smaller breasts will usually yield the longest lasting results. That’s not to say that successful results aren’t seen with large breasts! But because they’re heavier, they are more likely than smaller breasts to sag again.
A breast lift won’t change the size of your breasts. As mentioned earlier. Your surgeon might discuss augmentation surgery at the same time as a breast lift if that’s what you’re after.
What to expect
You’ll have a chat with your surgeon about your reasons for wanting the surgery and your expectations. It’s important to find a surgeon you can be open and honest with, as that will help them understand your needs better.
They will also go through the risks and other considerations before going ahead with the surgery.
You will be asked about your medical history and any regular medications you take, to ensure you’re safe to proceed and that certain medications (like blood thinners) are stopped in time before your surgery.
Your surgeon will also examine your breasts to best prepare for the surgery and may recommend a couple of other tests.
Depending on the extent of the surgery, you may be awake with sedation and local anaesthesia, or asleep with general anaesthesia. It totally depends on what you have planned.
Your surgeon may use one of several different techniques to achieve your desired look.
They might make one of the following incisions:
Inframammary. The crease under the breast.
Periareolar. Around the areolar, the area of darker skin on your breast.
Downward from the areolae to the breast creases.
What comes next may include placing stitches deep within the breasts to achieve their desired shape, removing excess breast skin and optimising the position of the nipples.
They will close the incisions with stitches, tape or adhesives.
This usually lasts around 2-3 hours.
The results are noticeable straight away!
You’ll generally be able to go home the same day as your surgery.
You’ll likely notice gauze covering your breasts and a surgical support bra to minimise movement and pain. Sometimes, small tubes are placed at the incision sites to drain fluid or blood. These are usually removed within a few days.
Swelling and bruising of the breasts usually lasts around two weeks. It is common to be sore. After all, you have just had surgery.
The incision sites will be red or pink, which usually lasts a few months.
Numbness in your breasts and nipples may last up to six weeks.
Ask Doctor Jad also has some tips for you for your journey to recovery!
Here are some tips for a quicker and happier recovery:
- Wear a support bra or compression garment for extra support during the healing process
- Take Arnica supplements to reduce bruising
- Sleep upright to reduce swelling
- Use a scar sheet or gel to reduce scarring - take your pick!
- Avoid strenuous activity for at least two weeks
- When to return to work – usually a few weeks if your job isn’t too physical. Wrestlers may need to wait a bit longer
- Minimise physical contact to the breasts to avoid pain or damage
- To contact them if you notice a warmth/redness in your breast or a fever. This might be a sign of infection
If you follow the advice above, you should be able to enjoy your new look! Otherwise, always contact your surgeon if you have any concerns.
Your happiness and safety is the main priority here at Ask Doctor Jad.