Loss of firmness and elasticity, sagging, and deflation of the breasts are just some of the physical changes that can occur over time. In addition to changing a woman’s appearance, these symptoms can also cause harmful emotional turmoil and self-consciousness. To address these issues, many women consider breast lift surgery to restore the youthful position of the breasts, and more importantly, to provide a major confidence boost.
Breast Lift Before-and-After Photos
Each patient is unique and individual results may vary.
What is a Breast Lift?
A breast lift, also known as mastopexy, is a popular surgical procedure that addresses sagging in the breasts due to gravity, pregnancy, and other factors. Dr. Baker typically performs mastopexy procedures for women who wish to correct the appearance of pendulous or aging breasts.
The lifting procedure involves trimming excess skin from the breasts and reshaping the contours to lift the bust into a naturally youthful position. Often, the surgeon will also reduce the size of the areolae to make them more proportionate.
Why Choose to Get a Breast Lift?
The decision to get plastic surgery should always be a personal choice. Some of the main reasons women seek out mastopexy include:
- Loss of firmness and elasticity in the breasts due to age or pregnancy
- Stretched-out skin caused by weight fluctuations
- Sagging breasts due to stress on the ligaments and the long-term effects of gravity
- One breast hangs lower than the other
- Nipples and areola point downward
Ideal candidates for mastopexy are women who have noticed unwanted changes in the shape and position of their breasts. Candidates should have a positive outlook and realistic expectations for what the procedure can accomplish. Women interested in plastic surgery should be non-smokers who are physically healthy and at a stable weight.
Preparing for Surgery
Before surgery, you may need to schedule a mammogram. Patients will need to stop smoking well in advance of surgery and avoid taking aspirin and other medications for about two weeks before the procedure. Due to the anesthesia that will be used during surgery, patients will need to make arrangements to have someone drive them to and from surgery and help with everyday tasks during the initial stages of recovery.
Types of Breast Lifts
There are a variety of techniques that can be used to perform mastopexy. The amount of ptosis (sagging) present will help determine the incision pattern. Dr. Baker will recommend the method that he feels will achieve the best possible results while minimizing scarring.
This technique is only used when there is a minimal amount of breast sagging and/or when an implant is placed. It involves making a small incision at the top edge of the areola in a crescent-like shape. This incision is used less frequently than other techniques.
When using the donut lift method, the surgeon makes a circular incision at the edge of the areola. This technique is typically used when patients have mild sagging and are combining a lift with breast augmentation. It is also effective at reducing the areola size. The scar is concealed at the edge of the areola.
This method treats moderate sagging. It allows the doctor to remove excess skin and reshape the breast. The incision runs around the outer edge of the areola and from the center of the areola down to the breast fold.
This technique is used to treat significant sagging and pendulous breasts. It is also appropriate when a breast reduction is combined with a lift. Three incisions are made to remove excess tissue. One is made around the edge of the areola, one vertically from the areola to the breast crease, and one concealed in the breast crease. This is the most effective type of breast lift.
Each patient is unique and individual results may vary.
The Breast Lift Procedure
Dr. Baker performs mastopexy on an outpatient basis at a fully accredited ambulatory surgery center of a hospital in Miami, FL. Breast lift surgery is typically performed under light sleep anesthesia. The anesthesia and the recommended surgical technique for the patient’s custom procedure will be discussed during the initial consultation with Dr. Baker.
Depending on the patient’s needs, the doctor may make an incision around the areola, and often a vertical incision from the areola to the breast crease. This is a common technique, known as a “lollipop lift”. If there is significant breast sagging, Dr. Baker typically opts for the “anchor lift”. This is similar to the lollipop lift but utilizes an additional incision hiden within the crease of the breast.
Excess skin and tissue will be removed, the nipples reduced an repositioned higher up on the breast to create a more youthful appearance. Precise suturing is then used to close the incisions.
The entire procedure typically takes less than three hours. Patients return home on the same day.
After a mastopexy, it is normal to experience some swelling and bruising for about two weeks. Pain and soreness around the incision(s) lasts only a few days. Dr. Baker will prescribe medication to alleviate any discomfort and keep swelling to a minimum.
In the first few days after surgery, avoid any straining or lifting. Make sure to sleep on your back to avoid any pressure on the chest.
You should avoid sex and exercise for three to four weeks after undergoing mastopexy. Hair washing, showering, and bathing can resume one or two days after surgery. Stitches are dissolvable and don’t require removal.
A surgical support bra should be worn for about one to two weeks after surgery, followed by a soft support bra for a month. Silicone tape or gel two weeks after surgery is recommended to optimize healing.
The Cost of Breast Lift Surgery
Many of our patients’ first question is: how much does a breast lift cost? The answer varies greatly depending on a number of factors, with costs ranging anywhere from $3,000-$12,000. In 2018, the average cost was about $5,000.
It’s important to note that this number doesn’t include anesthesia, operating room costs, and miscellaneous fees. Health insurance does not cover mastopexy since is considered a type of cosmetic surgery. For this reason, Dr. Baker’s office offers flexible financing for patients to make such breast surgery accessible, regardless of one’s ability to pay for the procedure up front.
When choosing a board-certified surgeon, it’s important that you feel comfortable with the surgeon and the results they are able to provide for their patients. Be sure to keep this in mind if you are price shopping for this type of surgery.
Possible Risks or Side Effects
When performed by board-certified plastic surgeon, mastopexy is considered a safe procedure. Nonetheless, it is important to consider all the possible risks and complications. During your consultation, Dr. Baker will go over any risks that may be relevant to you based on your health history. These can include:
- Unfavorable Scarring
- Loss of sensation
- Breast asymmetry
- (Partial) loss of nipple or areola
- Difficulty breastfeeding
Combining a Breast Lift & Breast Augmentation
A breast lift enhances the breasts by elevating them to a higher, more attractive position on the chest wall. It also resizes and repositions areolae that have fallen below the breast crease.
However, mastopexy as a standalone surgery won’t always produce the results that patients are expecting. If your breasts look deflated due to weight loss, pregnancy, aging, or a combination of factors, Dr. Baker may recommend a breast lift with implants. This will help add fullness to the lift and provide the shape you are looking for in one single procedure.
Breast augmentation increases the size of a woman’s breasts, so for individuals with deflated or smaller breasts, this can be a good option. On its own, breast augmentation may be enough to add fullness and a subtle lifting effect for women with minor breast sagging. For others, combining a mastopexy with implants produces the best breasts.
Having a breast lift without implants won’t increase volume in the breasts. In fact, some women go down a cup size following a mastopexy procedure. When both volume and lift is desired, Dr. Baker often recommends combining the two procedures to create the full and youthful bust that breast enhancement patients seek.
Each patient is unique and individual results may vary.
Patients will notice an immediate improvement after mastopexy. Over the next few months, the shape of the breasts will continue to change slightly. Scars will appear red at first but will eventually soften and become lighter, usually by six months. Your bra size may be slightly smaller following surgery, due to the bust being firmer and more rounded.
While breast lift results in most patients will last for many years, they will not be permanent. Aging causes the skin to lose elasticity, resulting in further sagging over time.
Patients with naturally small breasts may find that their results last longer than those with larger breasts. This is because less strain is placed on the breast ligaments. Keeping a stable weight and living a healthy lifestyle will help you maintain optimal results for as long as possible after surgery.
Dr. Baker often advises women to wait to undergo mastopexy until they are done having children. Weight fluctuations and breast tissue changes during pregnancy and breastfeeding may undo the effects of a lift. Also, while it isn’t typically the case, some women have trouble breastfeeding after mastopexy.
To Dr. Baker,
God bless you in your hands, in your job. I was blessed in being able to meet you and make me look 20 years younger!!
- 5 stars
Breast Lift Frequently Asked Questions
A vampire breast lift, or VBL as it is commonly called, involves injecting platelet-rich plasma into the bust to add subtle fullness and firmness to the breasts. VBL is known as a non-surgical alternative to implants since it does not require incisions or leave any scarring.
If you’re looking for a subtle lift, VBL might be a good option for you. However, it’s important to understand what VBL can and cannot do. This procedure will not augment the breasts by a full cup size or change their shape. Instead, the procedure may create a slightly fuller, firmer bust. It may also help fade the look of scars or stretch marks in the chest area and smooth out wrinkles.
Also, results are short lasting.
If you’re pregnant, breastfeeding, or are at high risk for breast cancer, VBL might not be right for you.
Some women may choose to get a revision lift after 10-15 years but a full mastopexy typically isn’t needed. The heavier the breasts, the more likely it is that they will start to sag again eventually.
Often, yes. Removing a breast implant can cause lax skin tissue and may prompt Dr. Baker to recommend a lifting procedure.
Mastopexy won’t make your breasts larger, but in some cases, it might make them look smaller. This is because some of the breast tissue and skin may need to be removed in order to raise the breasts into a higher, more youthful position.
Patients looking for larger, perkier breasts may want to consider having breast augmentation in conjunction with a lift. In some cases, an implant alone will suffice. Each individual is different and you should talk to a skilled surgeon to determine the best treatment plan.
While some scarring is to be expected with any surgical procedure, many patients find the results to be worth any mild scarring that may occur after surgery. Most scars become unnoticeable over time.
Choosing the right surgeon is one of the most important decisions you will make during the mastopexy planning process. Make sure the surgeon you select is board-certified and highly experienced.
Do plenty of research—check credentials carefully, online reviews and take a look at breast lift before and after photos. Talk to former patients if you can. Ultimately, it is up to you to find a doctor you can trust and feel comfortable with.
Why Choose Dr. Baker
- American Board of Plastic Surgery
- New York University School of Medicine, New York, New York, Doctor of Medicine
- General Surgery: Five-Year Residency/Chief Residency, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, St. Luke’s Roosevelt Hospital Center, New York, New York
- Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery: Four Year Residency/Chief Residency/Fellowship with Dr. D. Ralph Millard Jr., MD, FACS, Hon. FRCS England, University of Miami/Jackson Memorial Medical Center, Miami, Florida
- University of Miami, School of Business Administration, Miami, Florida, Exec. MBA-Health Administration, Beta Gamma Sigma Honor Society
To schedule a breast lift consultation in Miami with Dr. Baker, call (305) 381-8837. We look forward to helping you achieve your cosmetic goals!