Breast Lift (Mastopexy) Orange County
Dr. Aiello is reputed as one of the top Orange County breast surgeons. He has years of experience providing happy outcomes on many different breast sizes and shapes. A mastopexy operation is performed to raise sagging breasts; correcting and modifying the elevation of the breasts. During the course of a woman’s life, the breasts change in appearance and oftentimes sag. This is NOT an uncommon condition. In fact, the clinical term for female breasts that sag is called ‘breast ptosis.’ There are many causes of breast ptosis including pregnancy, cigarette smoking, high body mass, gravity and the natural aging process. Breasts have varying degrees of sagging (ptosis) caused by changes following pregnancy, weight loss, or congenital abnormalities. Sometimes a woman’s breasts are very asymmetric as well. This operation can improve a woman’s body image, self-esteem, self-concept, and quality of life! This page will review some of the most commonly asked questions for this procedure. To view Before & After photos of Dr. Aiello’s Breast Lift patients, click HERE to go to the gallery.
How do I know If i need a Breast Lift (MASTOPEXY)?
Women who are unhappy with sagging in their breasts often mistakenly think getting breast implants will magically lift and reposition their breast to a higher place on their chest. Unfortunately, this just isn’t how our anatomy works. Breast implants will add volume, but only a Mastopexy will lift the breast back into position. There are also different degrees of sagging (ptosis) as shown in the illustration below. To determine if you may need a breast lift, stand in front of a mirror, look at your nipples in relation to the natural crease beneath your breasts. You may even place a pen under your fold in the crease. If your nipples are lower than the pen (your breast crease), you are likely a candidate for a Mastopexy.
What type of MASTOPEXY will I need?
There are four types of breast lifts commonly performed for breast ptosis. Each has specific indications, so an in-person exam is needed with Dr. Aiello to help determine which lift is right for you. One thing to keep in mind is that the smaller the incision, the least amount of lift. Naturally no woman wants scars on their breast. To that end, plastic surgeons have designed procedures to minimize these, but each patient has a different set of circumstances. There are several types of incisions that are possible. The type of mastopexy used is based on the relative position of the nipple to the breast crease (fold under the breast). All incisions are made according to the contour of the breast so that scarring is hidden and minimal. Here are the different types of incisions:
- Anchor Incision (Full Mastopexy) – This includes an incision around the areola, vertically down to the crease then along the breast crease horizontally, making an anchor shape. (Although for most patients, the incision under the breast crease is not seen). This is the most common incision used by Dr. Aiello for breast lift patients and it’s the preferred method if there is also a breast reduction done simultaneously.
- Lollipop Lift (Vertical Mastopexy) – The incision is done around the areola and vertically down to the crease only, simulating somewhat of a lollipop shape. It is can be used in some cases when there is moderate sagging and for patients not getting breast implants with a lift.
- Donut Lift (Modified Mastopexy) – This incision is done around the areola only. It is for only those patients who have very moderate or mild sagging.
- Crescent Lift – This incision is only on the upper half of the areola. The procedure usually accompanies breast augmentation and is appropriate for those with a very small degree of sagging.
MY BREASTS ARE 2 DIFFERENT SIZES – WILL THEY BE EVEN AFTER A MASTOPEXY?
Asymmetry affects everyone! Most women have one breast that’s bigger than the other just like they might have a leg or arm that’s slightly longer than the other. (And by the way, when you have your next pedicure, look and see if your toes exactly match!) The point is that it’s rare for the human body to be symmetrical. However, in some women the difference in breast size and shape is more noticeable, and this is where a breast lift can be a big help. In rare cases, one breast may need a lift while the other one does not. Interestingly, breasts often heal from surgery differently too! Dr. Aiello will always take every necessary step to ensure you are symmetrical as possible after surgery.
Will my breasts look smaller after A MASTOPEXY?
A breast lift changes your breast shape and position of your breasts, not your size (unless you ask to be made smaller). The skin necessary to remove typically constitutes less than 2-3 tablespoons of volume per side. As long as you don’t want to be smaller, Dr. Aiello does not typically need to remove breast volume with a lift. A general guide line is how you look in a sports bra or non-padded bra is the volume you will have after a lift. However, it’s important to keep in mind that once your breast volume is distributed differently, you may look and feel a different size afterward. Patients seeking a breast lift often decide to also do an augmentation. This is especially common after major weight loss or breast feeding may have left them with volume loss giving a deflated look. During your consultation, Dr. Aiello will recommend the best way to proceed to achieve your specific goals.
Will I have more cleavage after a MASTOPEXY?
No, most likely not. A breast lift does remove excess skin, making the breasts tighter and bringing the nipples back into an aesthetic position on the breasts. However, the lift does not increase volume. By repositioning the existing tissue, some fullness in the upper part of the breasts may be restored, but this is not always the case. In those that desire increased volume or extensive upper breast fullness, a breast implant is needed in addition to a mastopexy. This is a common choice among breast lift patients. You can read more about Breast Augmentation HERE.
Do Breast Lifts Give Long-Lasting Results?
A mastopexy will provide great long lasting results, however, your results can diminish due to aging and other life changes.To answer this question, you have to consider how your breasts have change over time and why. Weight gain adds a lot of excess tissue to the breasts; and if this weight is lost, it’s possible that there will be sagging. Pregnancy also makes a big impact on breast tissue. A breast lift is a permanent procedure. However, even though your results will be long lasting, no surgery is able to permanently stop the aging process. Breasts will change over time purely from the effects of gravity.
A note about Tuberous Breast Deformity (TBD)
Tuberous breasts are a common developmental condition that has a widely variable impact on breast shape. While tubular breasts may be deficient in size, they are not simply “small breasts” that have not completely developed. The characteristics of the tuberous breast deformity include breast constriction, breast hypoplasia (small breast size or underdevelopment), breast skin deficiency, malposition of the inframammary fold (the crease beneath the breast), areolar herniation (puffiness or bulging of the nipple-areolar area), and asymmetry. Women may have one, several, or all of these anatomic characteristics. TBD can not simply be corrected with a breast augmentation. Correction incorporates breast augmentation when necessary, but usually also requires a breast lift and areola reduction to achieve the most consistent aesthetic outcomes.
More information on Breast Lifts in greater detail may be obtained from the references listed below:
- American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery www.surgery.org
- American Society of Plastic Surgeons www.plasticsurgery.org
- Smart Beauty Guide www.smartbeautyguide.com/procedures/breast/breast-lift
We understand the importance of having well-informed patients, and will take the time to thoroughly review all of your options for a breast lift so that you are confident with your choices. If you would like to learn more about breast augmentation at Ocean Plastic Surgery Center, CLICK HERE to contact us! We look forward to speaking with you and to scheduling your complimentary consultation with Dr. Aiello.