Q & A: How Does a Breast Lift Work?

Woman holding breasts with markings with hands. (MODEL)

Breasts can sag and lose shape with pregnancy, weight loss, and natural aging. If you’re concerned about drooping breasts, a breast lift may be the solution you’ve been looking for. But how does a breast lift work? Will you need implants, and will there be scarring? This post will answer these questions and more.

Q) How Is a Breast Lift Done?

A) During a breast lift, the surgeon removes excess skin from the breasts, and the remaining tissue is reshaped and lifted to achieve a more youthful and attractive appearance. Depending on the amount of sagging, I may use one of several techniques, including:

·      Short-Scar Mastopexies: Donut Lift and Lollipop Lift

The donut lift involves an incision that encircles only the areola, resulting in minimal scarring. This technique is ideal for patients with mildly sagging or conical-shaped breasts who desire a subtle lift.

Alternatively, a lollipop-shaped incision is made around the areola and down to the breast crease when more lift is required. This technique is typically effective for patients with mild to moderate breast sagging, good skin elasticity, and minimal excess skin.

·      Traditional Mastopexy: Anchor Lift

Traditional mastopexy involves making an anchor-shaped incision: around the areola, down to the breast crease, and along the crease. This technique is generally recommended for patients with moderate to severe sagging. While highly effective, this technique is associated with more scarring than other methods.

·      Enhanced Breast Lift/Auto-Augmentation

For patients with sufficient breast tissue who desire a breast lift and additional fullness without implants, I can perform an enhanced mastopexy or auto-augmentation technique. The procedure involves releasing a “flap” or section of your own breast tissue from the lower portion of the breast and repositioning it in the upper portion for a fuller appearance.  

Q) Will I Have to Get Implants?

A) While a breast lift improves the position and shape of the breasts, it doesn’t increase breast size. If you want larger breasts, you can pair breast augmentation with a lift. And if you’d like a fuller breast shape but aren’t a good candidate for auto-augmentation, the use of implants may be recommended to achieve your desired results.

Q) Will I Have Scars After a Breast Lift?

A) Yes, a breast lift will leave scars, but the location and size will depend on the technique used by your surgeon. Short-scar mastopexies leave a scar around the areola only (donut lift) or around the areola and down to the breast crease (lollipop lift). Traditional mastopexy typically leaves an anchor-shaped scar around the areola, down to the breast crease, and along the crease. These scars typically fade and flatten over time. But while they may never disappear entirely, most patients find the scars a worthwhile tradeoff for firmer, uplifted, more youthful-looking breasts.

Request a Consultation

If you’re considering a breast lift, it may be helpful to view the before-and-after photo gallery and some of my favorite breast enhancement cases to see the kind of results you can expect. If you’d like to speak with a board-certified plastic surgeon about your options, call our Houston, TX, office today at (713) 571-0600 or request a consultation online.

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