Breast Lift Mastopexy
Mastopexy, which is the medical name for a breast lift, is a plastic surgery option for women who want perkier breasts and a more youthful profile. The procedure removes excess skin from the breasts and tightens the tissue surrounding them. This supports and reshapes the new contour of the breasts. A breast lift can also reduce an enlarged areola that has become uncomfortable or unattractive for the patient. Women’s breasts change over time due to a variety of factors, including normal aging, pregnancy, breastfeeding, fluctuations in weight, and heredity.
The mastoplexy procedure does not have a significant effect on the size of a woman’s breasts nor does it round out the upper parts. Patients who desire a fuller look in addition to what the breast lift provides should consider getting breast augmentation at the same time. Those who feel their breasts are too large can combine this procedure with breast reduction surgery. Women in good physical health that do not smoke and who are at or are able to obtain a healthy weight make ideal candidates for a breast lift.
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Western Maryland Medical Arts Center
12502 Willowbrook Road, Suite 460
Cumberland, MD 21502
Hours of Operation:
Tuesday and Thursday 8 am – 5:30 pm
Friday 8 am – 12 pm
Steps Involved in Breast Lift Surgery
This procedure can be completed using a variety of surgical techniques and incision patterns. The following factors determine how the surgeon will proceed:
- Size and shape of the patient’s breasts
- Skin elasticity and quality
- Amount of extra skin available around the breasts
- Degree of sagginess of the breasts
- The position and size of the areolas
The other thing to decide before surgery is whether the patient prefers general anesthesia or intravenous sedation. Both of these allow the surgeon to make cuts without the patient feeling pain or anxiety. Once it has taken effect, the procedure begins by the surgeon making an incision in a circular pattern around the areola. For some patients, the placement of the incision goes vertically or horizontally down from the crease of the breast. The surgeon completes the following steps after making the incision:
- Lifts and reshapes the underlying breast tissue to improve the contour and firmness of each of the breasts
- Removes excess skin around the breasts to improve elasticity
- Repositions the nipple and areola on each breast to create a height that appears more youthful and natural
- Removes skin from the perimeter of the areolas if they are too large
The last step in the breast lift procedure is to tighten the remaining skin and close the incision. The sutures are located deep within the tissues of the breast in order to support their new form. Although plastic surgeons make every effort to conceal the scar lines from a mastoplexy in the natural creases of the breasts, this isn’t always possible. However, the scars will lighten and fade over time.
Since nausea and disorientation upon waking up from anesthesia are common, it is important for patients to arrange for a ride home from the surgery center. Grogginess and fatigue may persist for a few days for those who are especially sensitive to anesthesia. Patients should plan to schedule a follow-up appointment before the end of the first week. The surgeon will check on progress at this time as well as remove stitches, if necessary.
It is essential to take only the prescription drugs provided by the physician for pain relief during the first several days after surgery. Some over-the-counter medications contain ingredients that increase the risk of post-surgical bleeding. Patients should not switch to non-prescription pain relievers until directed to do so by their doctor. Some things that help to reduce swelling after a breast lift include:
- Wearing the compression garment provided after surgery
- Reducing or eliminating salt from the diet
- Drinking an adequate amount of water
- Sleeping with the head raised a few inches or in a partially reclined position
- Getting up to walk every couple of hours
While walking is necessary to prevent blood clots, patients need to avoid moderate to intense workout sessions for at least a couple of weeks. Since the compression garments cannot get wet, patients need to take sponge baths until the end of the first week. Breast lift patients wear a special bra for two to three months after surgery to facilitate healing. Women with a typical desk job can return to work in about a week while those who have more of a physically demanding job should wait until they get their surgeon’s approval.