What is a breast lift or mastopexy?
During a mastopexy, our board-certified plastic surgeons lift the breasts to give patients a more full and projected bust appearance. This is done by removing excess skin and tightening the surrounding tissue. During a mastopexy, or breast lift, the areola can also be reduced.
Breast lift procedures don’t significantly change the size of the breasts. If your desire is to have breasts that are lifted and slightly bigger, then a breast augmentation at the time of your mastopexy is an option. Patients wanting to decrease the size of their breasts while also achieving a better shape and lift may want to consider a breast reduction procedure instead.
Based on their unique goals for plastic surgery, patients may be eligible for breast implants in addition to a breast lift.
Learn more about the additional breast procedures we offer.
Types of Breast Lifts
There are multiple types of breast lifts, each with different types of incisions and final results. The board-certified plastic surgeons at Nesmith Plastic Surgery Center help patients determine the correct type of breast lift technique to fit their needs.
What are the risks of a breast lift?
As with any of our cosmetic surgeries at Nesmith Plastic Surgery Center, a breast lift is a surgical procedure that carries risks that patients need to be aware of beforehand. Some of the risks of a breast lift include the following:
How Do I Prepare For Breast Lift Surgery?
Before their breast lift procedure, patients should discuss any preparations for the surgery with their surgeon. This includes reviewing the details of their medical history and expectations before the procedure.
Women should schedule a mammogram to ensure their breasts are healthy and lump-free. All patients should arrange for help during the recovery period, especially with driving home following the procedure. Patients should avoid taking certain medications such as aspirin or anti-inflammatory drugs before the breast lift because they can increase bleeding.
At Nesmith Plastic Surgery Center, we are committed to our patients from their first consultation to their final visit after surgery. If you have specific questions about preparing for your scheduled procedure, please contact our team.
What to expect during breast lift recovery
When you return home after surgery, your breasts will be wrapped in gauze bandages and supported by a surgical bra. Depending on the type of mastopexy procedure, you may have surgical drains to prevent fluid build up.
You will be instructed by Dr. Nesmith to wear the surgical bra for a few weeks and then a sports bra for the duration of your recovery time. Wearing a bra 24/7 during recovery helps minimize swelling, prevents incisions from stretching, and supports the breast tissue for healing.
You may notice bruising and swelling for the first few weeks, as well as a heavy or tight sensation. Our team will provide aftercare instructions to prevent infection at the incisions.
During recovery, you will be instructed to sleep on your back or side and not to lift anything over 10 pounds for several weeks. If their job requires minimal activity, most women can return to work after one week.
Can you breastfeed after a breast lift?
There is a small risk of nerve damage during mastopexy that could hinder future breastfeeding. In most cases, breast sensation and ducts are preserved by the surgical techniques recommended by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons. This allows most women to breastfeed after they have received this procedure.
How soon will you see results?
Following all types of breast lifts, patients will notice an immediate change in breast appearance. The breasts will continue to change and settle for a few months after the surgery. Initially following the procedure, breast lift scars will appear red and lumpy. These scars are permanent, but they will fade and thin within a year or two.
How long does a breast lift last?
The majority of breast lift patients enjoy the results for 8-10 years. However, maintaining a healthy lifestyle can allow your results to last longer. Your breasts do not stop aging after surgery. Factors like sun exposure, smoking, genetics, skin type, medical conditions, and large breast size can accelerate aging.
Can you get a breast lift without implants?
Many women who are dissatisfied with their breast volume may elect to combine a breast lift with breast implants. However, if you are satisfied with your current breast size, a mastopexy can be performed as an individual procedure.
How painful is a breast lift?
Anesthesia will prevent you from feeling any pain during the surgery itself. During recovery, patients can expect discomfort due to their incisions, and likely soreness, bruising and swelling. Most women find over-the-counter pain medications to be effective for pain relief after mastopexy.
When can I go braless after a breast lift?
Patients will have to wear an elastic bandage around their chest to minimize swelling. This supports the breasts as they heal. Dr. Nesmith recommends patients wear a bra 24/7 for at least the first 3 months.
Is a breast lift cheaper than implants?
A breast lift and breast augmentation are two different procedures with different surgical goals and outcomes. Schedule a consultation with Nesmith Plastic Surgery Center to determine which procedure is the right choice for your desired outcomes.