Breast Lift (Mastopexy)
As skin loses its elasticity, breasts often lose their shape and firmness and begin to sag. Breast lift, or mastopexy, is a surgical procedure to raise and reshape sagging breasts. Mastopexy can also reduce the size of the areola, the darker skin surrounding the nipple. If your breasts are small or have lost volume (for example, after pregnancy or weight loss) breast implants inserted in conjunction with mastopexy can increase both their firmness and their size.
There are many different techniques of mastopexy and the position of the resulting scars may vary. There is always a circular scar around the nipple. A second vertical scar running from the lower most point of the nipple to the fold beneath the breast is also common. In some techniques, there is also a horizontal scar in the fold beneath the breasts. The horizontal scar can usually be kept quite short but its length does vary depending on the original shape of the breasts. Some women also opt to have a breast implant inserted at the same time, in order to restore fullness and volume to the breasts.
If you are planning to have more children, it may be a good idea to postpone your breast lift. While there are no special risks that affect future pregnancies (for example, mastopexy usually does not interfere with breast-feeding), pregnancy is likely to stretch your breasts again and offset the results of the procedure.
At 152 Harley Street, breast uplift is carried out under Local Anaesthetic & Sedation in our state-of-the-art day case theatre. You will be able to leave shortly after your procedure, but still receive the same thorough and excellent aftercare that you would expect with a general anaesthetic. Alternatively, you can opt to have a general anaesthetic and your Consultant Plastic Surgeon will talk you through all the options that are available to you at your initial consultation.
“A Breast lift can raise and reshape sagging breasts”
The surgery itself usually takes two to three hours. Breast reduction is performed either under Local Anaesthetic & Sedation or general anaesthesia.
Techniques for breast reduction vary, but the most common procedure involves an anchor-shaped incision that circles the areola, extends downward and follows the natural curve of the crease beneath the breast. Excess glandular tissue, fat, and skin is removed and the nipple and areola are moved into their new position. The skin from both sides of the breast is brought down and around the areola, shaping the new contour of the breast. Liposuction may be used to remove excess fat from the armpit area.
In most cases, the nipples remain attached to their blood vessels and nerves. However, if the breasts are very large and pendulous, the nipples and areolas may have to be completely removed and grafted into a higher position.
As with any surgery, there is always the possibility of complications, including bleeding and infection. The procedure does leave noticeable, permanent scars, although they will be covered by your bra. (Poor healing and wider scars are more common in smokers.)
The procedure can rarely leave you with slightly mismatched breasts or unevenly positioned nipples. Future breast-feeding may not be possible, since the surgery removes many of the milk ducts leading to the nipples.
AFTER YOUR SURGERY
After surgery, you will have a surgical bra over gauze dressings. A small drain may be placed in each breast to drain off blood and fluids for the first day.
There may be some pain for the first couple of days, especially when you move around or cough and some discomfort for a week or more.
Wounds are checked one week after surgery, but sutures are generally dissolvable and do not need to be removed. You will need to wear a support bra for several weeks, until the swelling and bruising subside.