Breast lift surgery or “Mastopexy” – the medical term for this procedure – is an extremely popular type of plastic surgery.
Breast lift surgery is usually requested by women whose breasts have sagged with time due to gravity, and who have endured the unflattering side effects of motherhood. Other women may seek advice for a breast lift if they have experienced extreme weight loss, which has left their breasts ‘droopy’.
Why have a Breast Lift?
One of the more common reasons that women would seek advice on mastopexy is because their breasts have been affected by motherhood. Breasts are impacted at both the pregnancy stage and during the breast-feeding stage. The dissention of the breasts as breast milk is produced can cause the strong fibres, which hold young firm breasts in place, to break apart. This is what can cause the breasts to move down the torso as the sheer weight of the milk filled breasts causes the skin to stretch. Once the skin around the breast area is stretched, it usually doesn’t return to it’s previous form – without surgical intervention.
Breasts that are unattractively altered in this way not only leave physical repercussions, but also psychological scars. A woman may feel less desirable as she is now more restricted to what she can wear and how she feels about herself naked. The loss of youthful attractive breasts can negatively impact a woman greatly. At this point women will often seek solutions, such as a breast lift, and approach a plastic surgeon to help.
Planning your Breast Lift (Mastopexy)
The first step is to book a consultation with the plastic surgeon that you are considering to perform your breast lift. The plastic surgeon will go through your medical history as well as identifying any potential allergies, which may affect the way that the mastopexy is conducted. The surgeon may also take photos and mark an outline where he or she will complete the incision. The surgeon will then appraise the volume of the breasts and if there seems to be a loss of volume, then the surgeon may suggest placing implants underneath the skin and then lifting the breasts.
Having a breast lift can be an extremely positive step for the individual as the surgery helps correct the symmetry of the breasts and create an aesthetically pleasing and youthful figure. Your improved physical appearance can in turn, alter your state of mind for the better.
Sagging breasts can be extremely damaging for a woman’s self confidence, as it not only affects their personal life but also their everyday life. Some of the simplest of choices such as what to wear, especially if it involves exercising or swimming can be embarrassing. How a woman feels about herself without clothes on can also have a big impact psychologically. It is often when women have these issues, that they will seek advice for having breast enhancement surgery.
Breast lift surgery is completed under a general anaesthetic and therefore it is a procedure that cannot be taken lightly. Women will often research months before undergoing breast enhancement surgery. The most common form of research conducted is usually finding pictures of models or celebrities that have the breasts and even the figure that the individual would like to have.
Finding the Right Breasts for your Mastopexy
Finding the breasts you want can be an extremely difficult task, as the breasts need to match your size and shape. Some individuals search and come up with completely incompatible breasts for their figures. That is why it is good to start looking for what you want in your breast lift, but also leave part of your search up to the professionals. On arrival at your consultation with the surgeon of your choice, you will be given a ‘bible’ of all the different shapes and sizes of breasts that you can imagine. The surgeon will then direct you to what would look best for your body type. This is a great way of choosing; in consultancy with the surgeon who is obviously very well informed in this field.
Once you have determined the outcome you would like and which breasts would suit you, including whether or not your surgery will include implants, your consultant will then familiarize you with all of the risks and complications that come with undergoing a breast lift operation.
An incision is made in the breast, depending on the complexity or degree of the uplift this can be limited to around the areola, extend vertically below the nipple or horizontally along the fold of the breast. Through this incision, the breast tissue is lifted and tightened. If desired, an implant can be used to augment the final shape of the breast. Be sure to speak to your surgeon about the type of incision that will be used and the expectations for the resulting scar.
Risks and Complications
Under law, the surgeon or anaesthetist will run through all the risks of having a general anaesthesia and these include; suppressed breathing, lowering of your blood pressure, heart failure and even death. Approximately one-third of patients who receive an anaesthetic during surgery will experience “anaesthesia sickness” or post-operative nausea and vomiting (POVN).
The risks and complications associated with the procedure itself can include; infection of the wound and scar area. Keloid scaring is possible for some patients, which is where the scar becomes raised and red after healing. This is not aesthetically pleasing and may require a further surgery to remove the scar and re-stitch the wound.
Haematomas are possible; these are pockets of blood that form whilst going through the healing process. In addition, after the surgery you may experience poor healing of the incision, breast asymmetry, and fluid accumulation within the base of the breasts. Other more serious risks and complications are issues like DVT, which stands for ‘Deep Vein Thrombosis’, which is a blood clot, which can lead to pulmonary and cardiac complications. Extremely firm breasts that may appear fake due to excessive scar tissue forming is another complication and risk that must be looked at prior to committing to mastopexy surgery.
Q. Does my insurance cover the costs for having a breast lift?
A. Unfortunately, as a breast lift procedure is a cosmetic surgery, your insurance company will be less likely to pay out. However, make sure that you ask and you never know.
Q. What is the recovery like for having a breast lift?
A. Once you have undergone a procedure like breast lift surgery, you will be given a special bra, which must be worn for 24 hours a day, for 21 days. This will help your breasts settle and help them position themselves during the healing process. The pain should subside over a period of a few months and the scar will heal completely approximately a year after the surgery.
Q. Will I lose the feeling in my breasts?
A. At the beginning, quite a majority of women who undergo this surgery experience loss of feeling around the breast due to the incision lines and the loss of nerves in the wound. After a period of time, once the swelling goes down, some women gain the feeling back, however there are some that do not.
Q. Will I be in pain after the procedure?
A. The pain depends on the individual, however it is likely that you will feel some discomfort at some point during the whole process. Your doctor will therefore prescribe you some painkillers to help.