Many women find their breasts begin to sag and droop with age and especially following pregnancy. A breast lift is a procedure that is performed to raise and reshape your breasts to the desired shape.
The breast lift procedure can be performed on all breast sizes but the best results are normally on small sagging breasts that have lost their volume. A breast lift can also be performed in conjunction with a breast enlargement to restore volume.
The procedure: Breast Lift:
The procedure typically takes between 1-4 hours and is normally carried out under a general anaesthetic. There are many different techniques that depend on the individual having the procedure and the surgeon carrying it out. The most common procedure is as follows:
- An anchor shaped incision is made around the nipple areola and follows down along the contours of the breast and horizontally along the underside of the breast.
- Any excess skin from around the areola is removed which tightens the skin that surrounds the breast. This results in a lifting of the breast and elevating the position of the areola and nipple.
- If you have small breasts the ‘doughnut method’ is normally performed where the surgeon merely cuts around the areola.
Recovery Period: Breast Lift
- Breasts will be swollen and bruised following surgery and discomfort is managed with prescribed medication.
- A surgical bra is normally worn straight after surgery. This can normally be changed to a softer support bra after a few days. This bra must be worn for 24 hours a day for 3 – 4 weeks.
- Stitches are normally removed 1 – 2 weeks after surgery.
- Most people can return to work 1 – 2 weeks after surgery.
- Strenuous activity and exercise must be avoided for about 1 month.
- Numbness normally subsides by 6 weeks.
- Sleeping on you back during the recovery period is often advised.
Your surgeon may well ask you to refrain from drinking alcohol and smoking both before and after surgery as it can contribute to poor blood circulation and fluid retention.
Like with all surgeries, recovery times differ from one patient to the next and closely following the surgeons post operation instructions will generally lead to a quicker recovery period.
The Risks: Breast lift
- Scarring is common. Can be hidden by wearing a bra.
- Loss of nipple sensation: can be permanent.
- Breast infection.
- Asymmetrical nipple position.
- If you have large breasts then anticipate some recurrent drooping in the future.
- If you become pregnant after having this surgery your breasts are likely to droop again.