As you age, your breasts lose shape and firmness. The skin gradually loses its elasticity and no longer holds the breasts in a youthful, upright position. Pregnancy, breast feeding, weight gain and loss also add to the tissue burden of loss of skin elasticity. Women who have sagging breasts (ptosis) may benefit from a breast lift (mastopexy). If there are also problems of excess volume or size of your breasts, a reduction may also be done at the same time. Volume loss may be corrected by breast augmentation at the same time. Asymmetries may also be improved.
Excess skin is removed, the nipple areolar (dark skin around the nipple) complex is lifted and your breasts are re-contoured to create a more youthful appearance with firmer breasts. Depending on preoperative size, appearance and asymmetries, your nipple areolar complexes may also be reduced. There are incisions made directly on the breasts which may extend around the nipple areolar complex, into the front of the breast and into the breast fold, depending on the degree of droop, asymmetry and volume considerations.
Who is a Candidate
- Women who have sagging breasts.
- Women who want to improve their breast shape.
- Healthy women without underlying breast disease.
- Women who will tolerate breast scars.
- Higher breasts (lifted).
- Tighter breast envelope (increased skin tightness).
- Improved breast symmetry.
- More pleasing breast shape.
- More youthful appearance.
- Mastopexy (breast lift) operations are usually performed in an accredited outpatient surgical facility under general anesthesia or conscious sedation with local anesthesia.
- There are several types of mastopexy procedures depending on the severity of ptosis (breast droop). In most cases incisions are made around the nipple areolar complex and in front of the breasts. Sometimes they may extend into the breast fold.
- The nipple areolar complex is lifted to a more youthful position.
Recuperation and Healing
- Postoperative discomfort is usually controlled with oral medications.
- A soft bra or compression garment is usually worn for least several weeks postoperatively.
- A postoperative care facility or closely monitored overnight home care is standard practice.
- The patient will be seen the next day.
- External sutures are usually removed between 2-3 weeks after surgery.
- Light activity may be resumed in 7 to 10 days. Sports activities may be resumed in 6 weeks.
- Breast reduction or breast augmentation may be required with your mastopexy for the best results.
- Breast contouring may be appropriate with mastopexy.
The specific risks and the suitability of this procedure for a given individual can only be determined at the time of consultation with your Cosmetic Surgeon. A standard mastopexy always requires the placement of surgical incisions on the breasts. All surgical procedures have some degree of risk. Minor complications that do not affect the outcome occasionally occur. Major complications are rare.