BREAST LIFT IN ATLANTA
The breasts are composed of ligaments and connective tissue, and as the elasticity of the breast tissue decreases, the ligaments and skin begin to stretch, which can lead to the condition of breast ptosis (the medical term to describe breasts that sag or droop). Every woman will experience some degree of breast ptosis as she gets older; however, there are a number of factors that can exacerbate this condition:
- Breast size (larger breasts tend to sag more than small breasts)
- Pregnancy and breastfeeding
- Weight loss—as the breasts decrease in size during the weight reduction process, the skin and ligaments are often unable to conform to the new shape of the smaller breasts, giving the appearance that the breasts are ‘empty’ or sagging.
Breast lift surgery is designed to treat and correct the condition of breast ptosis by lifting and reinforcing the internal support structures of the breasts. Mastopexy procedures can effectively raise the position of the breasts, tighten the surrounding breast tissue, and remove excess skin in order to create the appearance of youthfully firm, perky breasts. Breast lifts can also be employed to treat breast-related aesthetic issues such as enlarged areolas, asymmetrical breasts (breasts that are different sizes), and downward-pointing nipples.
Mastopexy is a highly technical procedure that requires precision, accuracy and a keen eye for artistic detail. At Muse Plastic Surgery, located in Atlanta, Georgia, Dr. Jones and Dr. Lovell have all three. As talented plastic surgeons who take pride in keeping up with the latest developments in the ever-evolving field of breast surgery, Dr. Jones and Dr. Lovell provides their patients with cutting-edge surgical techniques and effortlessly beautiful breast lift results that complement and enhance their natural contours. Along with their professional staff, our plastic surgeons have created a warm, welcoming office environment where patients will feel comfortable and relaxed throughout their breast lift experience, knowing that their safety, satisfaction and results are our top priority.
BREAST LIFT TECHNIQUE OPTIONS
There are four primary breast lift surgery techniques that can be used to reposition the breasts and produce firm, youthful contours. The breast lift technique that is right for you will depend on a number of factors, including the size and shape of your breasts, the amount of excess skin being removed, the position of the nipples and your aesthetic goals. During your initial consultation, Dr. Jones or Dr. Lovell will assess the severity of your breast ptosis in order to determine the best option to fulfill your surgical objectives.
Suitable for patients who present with severely sagging or pendulous breasts, a full lift can remove a large amount of excess skin and reshape the breast tissue to create a more youthful appearance. A full lift can also reposition the areola to maintain a natural look and achieve a greater degree of correction than other techniques.
The full mastopexy involves an anchor-shaped incision that first encircles the areola, then extends down from the base of the areola to the bottom of the breast with a final crescent-shaped incision across the breast fold. These incisions allow for greater access to the underlying breast tissue so that Dr. Jones or Dr. Lovell can effectively reshape and raise the breasts and nipples to a more aesthetically desirable position. While the full lift is a more invasive approach, it’s ideal for those with a significant amount of sagging that won’t respond well to other breast lift techniques.
A vertical or lollipop lift is appropriate for patients with a moderate degree of breast sagging. This technique employs a circular incision around the areola that extends down to the breast crease, in a shape similar to that of a lollipop. These incisions allow Dr. Jones and Dr. Lovell to access the underlying breast tissue and remove any excess skin, then tighten and lift the breasts to a higher position. With this technique, a donut-shaped piece of tissue is also excised from around the areola so the nipple can be reshaped or elevated, followed by the reattachment of residual breast tissue to the areola.
The vertical lift results in minimal scarring and is often recommended for women with mild to moderate breast ptosis. It is also ideal for performing a breast lift with or without implants, depending on whether patients desiring a perkier bust want to drastically change the size and look of their breasts or not. If implants are desired, they can be added without additional scarring or recovery time.
The donut lift or Benelli breast lift is a less invasive technique that can correct mild to moderate ptosis. It is similar to the vertical or lollipop lift, but without a vertical incision that runs down to the breast crease. Instead, this method uses a circular incision around the entire circumference of the areola that blends in seamlessly with pigmented areas, leaving patients with little to no visible scarring after the procedure. Once the incision is made, Dr. Jones or Dr. Lovell will remove excess skin and tighten the remaining tissue, then close and suture the incisions to provide additional support to the newly lifted breast.
This technique is ideal for women who need minor adjustments to reach their aesthetic goals and want to reduce postoperative scarring. It is also useful for those who want a breast lift without implants to maintain a natural look, as this technique can provide a moderate amount of lift without significantly altering the appearance of the breasts. The donut lift can also be performed alongside breast augmentation for more comprehensive results.
The crescent lift is a suitable option for patients with mild breast sagging who need a minimal amount of lift and tissue contouring to achieve their goals. As the least-invasive breast lift option, this technique involves a crescent-shaped incision and the removal of a small amount of tissue above the areola. This can provide a minimal amount of lift while elevating the nipple to a more appropriate position, but cannot reshape or resize the areola due to the incision’s short length and placement. The crescent or nipple lift is ideal for correcting nipple asymmetry, however, and is often performed in conjunction with breast augmentation.
WHAT CAN A BREAST LIFT ADDRESS?
Breast lift surgery with or without implants can address a number of common concerns regarding breast appearance, including breast sagging and aesthetic issues involving the nipples or areola.
During your initial consultation, Dr. Jones or Dr. Lovell will discuss your desired look to help you decide on a suitable approach and determine your surgical goals, which may include some of the following benefits of a breast lift procedure:
- Lift sagging breast tissue to a more pleasing position
- Remove loose, excess skin
- Reshape and tighten the breast tissue
- Improve the firmness of the breasts
- Correct asymmetry in the breasts or nipples
- Improve body proportions
- Reposition the nipples and areola
- Reduce the size of the areola
- Eliminate skin irritation due to sagging breasts
- Improve your self-esteem and body image
It is important to mention that breast lift surgery on its own does not increase the size, volume or fullness of the breasts. If your surgical goals also include increasing your breast size or correcting volume loss, our plastic surgeons may recommend having a breast augmentation performed in conjunction with your breast lift procedure. In most cases, this can be done without the need for additional incisions and won’t impact the overall recovery time after the procedure.
BREAST LIFT WITH IMPLANTS
Breast lift surgery with augmentation using silicone implants is used to add more volume or fullness to the breasts, which can decrease due to aging, genetics, gravity or breastfeeding. This can result in a flat, deflated look, but adding implants to a breast lift procedure can reverse this effect and improve the overall shape and appearance of the breasts. Implants can also increase breast size for patients who want more defined contours or further rejuvenation of the bust, providing more dramatic results than a breast lift alone.
When combining a breast lift with augmentation, provide a customized look that complements your natural proportions. Silicone implants come in a variety of shapes and sizes and feel more like natural breast tissue. The type of implant that’s right for you will largely depend on your preferences and aesthetic goals, and our plastic surgeons will help you choose the best option for achieving your desired appearance.
Implants are placed at the same time the breasts are lifted, reducing the duration of both the surgery and recovery compared to having each procedure performed separately. First, Dr. Jones or Dr. Lovell will remove excess skin, reshape the breasts and position them higher on the chest wall. Then, they will insert the breast implants either above or beneath your chest muscles to add volume and create fuller contours. If necessary, they can also adjust the nipple-areolar complex to maintain proportionate, symmetrical results. Once the optimal shape and position have been achieved, they will close the incisions with small sutures. Keep in mind that the specific type of implant and incision used will vary depending on the look you want and the amount of correction needed to achieve your goals.
BREAST LIFT WITHOUT IMPLANTS
Not every breast lift procedure needs to be done with implants. Sometimes, women who are satisfied with their breast size may want to reshape the area while maintaining their natural proportions. If you’re unhappy with the shape or position of your breasts but don’t want to go up a cup size, a breast lift on its own can help you achieve firmer, more youthful contours without the use of implants.
A breast lift without implants restores the appearance of sagging breasts by reducing skin laxity and elevating the breasts to a higher position on the chest wall. This procedure won’t increase the size of your breasts or add fullness to the upper poles but can help to reverse the effects of gravity, aging or pregnancy for a perkier look. As a stand-alone procedure, a breast lift is an excellent tool for women who want to support and enhance their breasts without the addition of implants. It is also ideal for those with minimal sagging who would like to correct stretched or shapeless skin that gives the breasts a droopy appearance.
The breast lift technique most commonly used to reposition the breasts without implants is the vertical or lollipop lift. This technique lifts the breasts by removing excess skin, tightening the breast tissue and raising the nipple-areolar complex. A circular incision will be made around the areola, followed by a straight incision that extends down to the breast fold. These incisions resemble the shape of a lollipop and give Dr. Jones or Dr. Lovell access to the underlying tissue, allowing him to tighten and elevate the breasts and nipples without drastically changing their appearance. The areola can also be reduced using this technique, if desired. The vertical lift helps to minimize post-operative scarring and produces perky, natural-looking results.
BREAST LIFT RECOVERY
After your mastopexy is complete, Dr. Jones or Dr. Lovell will cover your incisions with dressings or bandages. These should remain in place for the next two days to ensure proper healing, and our plastic surgeons will advise you when it’s time to remove your bandages and surgical drains.
During the initial phase of your recovery, you may experience some chest tightness, swelling, bruising and general discomfort. These side effects will diminish over time but can be managed with medication, if necessary. While you’re healing, you will also need to wear a support bra or elastic bandage to support your breasts and minimize post-operative swelling.
After your procedure, you will need to avoid demanding activities or exercise so you don’t strain your breasts, but you will be able to slowly resume your daily activities as it becomes comfortable to do so. Most patients resume their normal routine within a few weeks, but strenuous exercise and heavy lifting should still be avoided for the first couple of months after your breast lift surgery. Dr. Jones and Dr. Lovell will provide detailed aftercare instructions to ensure a smooth recovery and check on your progress during follow-up appointments. They will also be available to address any questions or concerns you may have, so don’t hesitate to contact our office if something comes up.
BREAST LIFT RESULTS
Your initial mastopexy results will be noticeable immediately after surgery and continue to improve over the next two to three weeks as any residual swelling and bruising subside. Your breasts will feel firmer and look perkier sitting higher on your chest, and your new contours will develop further as your breasts adapt to their new placement and settle into their final position.
If you had a breast lift with implants, your breasts will also look and feel fuller after your surgery. Your implants will last for years unless you experience complications or decide to have them removed, although certain lifestyle factors can affect the appearance of your breasts even after augmentation. Similarly, a breast lift will also produce long-lasting results, but aging, weight fluctuations and future pregnancies can impact the outcome of your procedure. To extend the longevity of your new contours, it’s recommended that you maintain a healthy lifestyle and consider mastopexy with or without implants when you’re done with family planning — otherwise, future corrections may be needed to restore youthful-looking breasts.
CONTACT MUSE PLASTIC SURGERY
At Muse Plastic Surgery, Dr. Jones and Dr. Lovell focus not on changing the core aesthetic components of their patients, but rather on using cosmetic enhancement procedures to help them become the absolute best that they can be. Our plastic surgeons believe in the importance of having well-informed patients and will take the time to explain all of your mastopexy options and procedural details so that you feel completely comfortable about your surgery.
If you would like additional information about breast lift surgery, please do not hesitate to contact the Muse Plastic Surgery office today. We look forward to speaking with you and to scheduling your initial consultation with Dr. Jones or Dr. Lovell.
*This information about Breast Lift Surgery was reviewed by board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Wright Jones. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
DOES BREAST LIFT SURGERY AFFECT NIPPLE SENSATION?
Breast and nipple sensation may be affected in the days following your breast lift procedure, especially if your areola were repositioned during surgery. Temporary numbness and hypersensitivity are commonly reported, but these side effects typically resolve as your breasts heal. Changes in breast sensation can last for months or years after your surgery, but don’t hesitate to contact us if you’re concerned about any numbness or sensitivity you’re experiencing.
DOES MASTOPEXY ALTER BREAST SIZE?
On its own, breast lift surgery will not significantly impact your breast size. Without implants, your breasts may appear slightly smaller due to the removal of excess skin and tissue that causes sagging, but the overall effect will make them look firmer, perkier and more youthful. If you want to increase the size of your breasts or add fullness, a breast lift with augmentation is recommended to help you achieve your aesthetic goals.
WILL THERE BE SCARRING?
The amount of scarring will depend on which breast lift technique Dr. Jones uses, but incisions made during a breast lift procedure are small and strategically placed to minimize their appearance. Any surgical scars from your incisions will gradually fade and flatten over time to become less barely discernible.
HOW WILL A FUTURE PREGNANCY AFFECT MY RESULTS?
Due to the physical changes that occur in the body during pregnancy, your breast lift results may be negatively impacted if you become pregnant. Weight fluctuations can have a similar effect. Because many women inquire about breast lift surgery to reverse the effects of pregnancy, it’s recommended that you wait until after you’re done having children to schedule your procedure. Every woman’s body responds differently to pregnancy, however, so you can discuss how your plans fit in with your aesthetic goals during your initial consultation.