Have you been pregnant or breastfeeding and have found your breasts now appear more flat, hollow or saggier? Do you feel like your breasts have changed appearance simply as you’re ageing?
A breast lift, otherwise known as a mastopexy, lifts the breast, removes excess skin and tightens the surrounding tissue. While a breast lift does not make the breasts any bigger in size, it does make the breasts feel firm and can appear more youthful.
If you are wanting your breasts to look bigger you may wish to undertake a breast augmentation, or a breast augmentation and mastopexy.
BREAST LIFT AT A GLANCE
Anaesthesia type: ClearSleep
Procedure time: 2-3 hours
Recovery time: 1 week
As a result of factors such as pregnancy, breastfeeding, hereditary or ageing, the breasts will start to appear hollow or stretched. This is caused by the fibrous ligaments and skin in the breast becoming stretched, and as a result, they no longer support the breast, giving the breast a droopier appearance.
This is often a natural part of ageing and many women are fine with this appearance. However, for those who wish to alter or improve their appearance, a breast uplift can be an acceptable option.
A breast uplift is performed in a variety of ways. The best option for you will be decided by your surgeon during your consultation and will depend on a number of factors such as the size of your breasts and how you are wishing to appear after the surgery. Breasts of any size can be operated on, however, those with heavier breasts may have results that will not last as long.
You will be an ideal candidate for this procedure if you feel your breasts are lacking volume or are sagging as a result of factors such as weight loss, pregnancy, breastfeeding, or just simply from ageing.
A breast lift focuses on tightening the breast to limit sagging, causing the breasts to sit in a more natural position. Unlike other breast procedures, a breast lift will not alter the size, shape or fullness of the breasts. If you are interested in this, breast augmentation or breast reduction surgery may be more suitable. Both a breast augmentation and breast reduction can be performed at the same time as a breast lift.
To undergo this procedure, you will also need to be physically and mentally healthy, have a healthy BMI (between 18.5 – 24.9), and be a non-smoker or stop smoking at least two weeks prior to the procedure. Smoking can cause complications, particularly during the recovery period, so it is important to stop smoking before the procedure and during the recovery period.
Who cannot have a breast lift?
Centre for Surgery does not offer this procedure to women who are under 18 years old. At this age, the breasts will still be developing, and you will, therefore, be considered unsuitable for the surgery.
Prior to having a breast lift, it is important to consider whether or not you are planning to have more children. Being pregnant and breastfeeding will alter the results of the breast uplift, and you may require another breast lift. Many women decide to get a breast lift once they have finished having children.
Prior to undergoing a breast lift, you will need to have a consultation with one of our surgeons. They will be able to take a full medical history from you, as well as assess your suitability for this procedure.
The breast lift can be performed in one of two ways: the periareolar lift, or the vertical lift. These techniques will ensure you achieve the desired results while having minimal scarring.
When deciding on which technique you should choose, you will need to think about a number of things, including:
A breast lift will be completed under ClearSleep anaesthetic. This means you will not be awake for the procedure. Unlike other general anaesthetics, ClearSleep does not rely on breathing tubes and machines. It also results in a heightened sense of wellness after the procedure – you will no longer have to endure that nauseous, tired feeling so often experienced after anaesthetic.
Once you have been given the anaesthetic, the surgeon will make several small incisions on your breasts. The positions of these incisions will vary depending on which technique the surgeon uses. The skin around your areola will be removed and the breast will be reshaped. If you are having an enlargement or reduction at the same time as the lift, this will then be performed.
Once this is complete, the surgeon will close the incisions with stitches. These will generally have bandages applied. You will also be given a supportive garment to wear which will help with the recovery period.
After the surgery, you will be able to notice the breasts appear fuller. However, final results will not be visible until swelling has completely gone down.
If you wish, you can combine a breast augmentation and a breast lift, and undergo a procedure known as an augmentation mastopexy. This is a good option for women who want to address both the lack of shape in the breasts, as well as the level of sagging. Women who have asymmetry, who only require slight correction or have been pregnant, are considered good candidates for this procedure.
After the surgery, you will feel some pain and discomfort. While the surgeon will use nerve blocks to assist, this will eventually wear off. You will find you will be able to shower generally after two days, with the first three days typically being the most painful period of recovery. During this time, you will be advised on which medication you can take to alleviate discomfort.
You will have to avoid any strenuous physical activity for the first three to four weeks, which includes driving. You will need to wear a support bra at all times (except when showering) for the first month.
As surgical incisions have been made, you will be left with scars on your breasts. After the procedure, you will notice these scars appear to be red and sometimes lumpy. However, after the first month, this will reside, and the scars will reduce in size and look white rather than red. Most of these scars will occur around the areola.
However, as this is a surgical procedure, there are some risks, particularly with the scars. Scars can sometimes turn into:
- Hypertrophic scars: these will appear red, and will generally only occur
- Keloid scars: this occurs when scars heal too quickly and may occur at areas other than the incision site
- Capsular contracture: this is an internal lining from scar tissue that forms around a breast implant. This will make the implant tighter and may cause it to be misshapen.
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Our innovative ClearSleep anaesthesia technique
Comprehensive aftercare programme
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Am I an ideal candidate for breast lift?
The procedure is mostly preferred by women who have lost the volume and shape of their breasts after pregnancy, weight-loss or ageing.
How should I prepare for a breast lift procedure?
You should stop all medications that can increase the risk of bleeding after your procedure.
You should use an antiseptic solution to wash in prior to your procedure to reduce the risk of infection.
How is breast lift surgery performed?
At Centre for Surgery, our surgeons specialise in two techniques; periareolar and vertical breast lifts.
How long does a breast lift procedure take?
The procedure takes 1.5 hours on average.
What is the recovery period like?
Expect post-operative pain for the first three days but can be reduced with pain medications, and normal activities can be resumed after the first week following your surgery. However, extensive activities should be avoided for 3-4 weeks.
When can I resume my normal activities after a breast lift?
You should avoid all strenuous activities after breast lift surgery.
Most women can return to work after one week of recovery at home.
What are the age restrictions for breast lift surgery?
There is no upper age restriction on who can have a breast lift. Prospective patients must be in good health and have realistic expectations before surgery.
Does breast lift surgery leave scars?
All breast lift surgery will leave scars. The surgeon will do his very best to minimise the appearance of any scars following breast lift surgery.
Can breast lift surgery correct breast asymmetry?
Breast lift surgery can improve breast asymmetry but perfect symmetry cannot be achieved in any woman. Some cases may require breast implants to correct the asymmetry.
Can I combine breast lift with breast augmentation?
Yes, both procedures can be combined ideally for those with deflated breasts after pregnancy, small level of correction or treating asymmetry required.