What is Breast Lift Surgery?
Mastopexy is the plastic surgery procedure for lifting the breasts. Many patients come to Dr. David L. Durst—our experienced plastic surgeon in Huntsville—with the desire to have their breasts lifted to a more youthful position. When he sees you, he will discuss this procedure and explain the process in complete detail. Mastopexy is customized for each patient who has the procedure done.
Many times, Dr. Durst will see patients who are considering breast surgery but do not really know exactly what they need. He will talk with you and explain which technique will work best for your concerns. This often involves a careful examination and some measurements. Also, he and his staff will discuss your goals to make sure that he can outline a plan that can best suit your aesthetic ideal.
Is a Breast Lift Right for Me?
Some patients have mild droopiness that may be treated with breast implants alone; however, many patients have droopiness that requires a more comprehensive approach. The components of breast ptosis (droopiness) include a low positioning of the nipple and generally some sagging of the breast tissue. There are multiple causes for these symptoms. Sometimes a patient will have droopiness for genetic reasons. Often, it can be related to weight gain followed by weight loss. The most common reason is related to pregnancy changes, where the breasts get larger during pregnancy and then shrink afterwards. The skin often doesn’t contract to the breasts’ new shape, and many patients complain about their breasts having lost volume and looking “deflated” after having children.
If this is your situation, the breast lift can be a solution to your concerns. Sometimes, a patient will tell Dr. Durst that their breasts sag and appear too small. In that situation, they will generally desire implants as well as a lift. Dr. Durst also sees patients whose breasts sag as well as appear large and heavy. In these situations, a small breast reduction combined with a lift is performed to help obtain the ideal shape.
How is the Breast Lift Procedure Performed?
A breast lift is typically performed as an outpatient surgery using general anesthesia. Dr. Durst will outline the mastopexy plan with drawings on your chest prior to the surgery. Then, the incisions will be made, and the tissue will be rearranged to achieve the nipple elevation and tightening of the tissue that will create the best possible results. There are a variety of techniques that can be used to complete a breast lift procedure, and the method utilized will depend on your individual needs. Some of the techniques include:
Full mastopexies are typically performed on individuals with moderate to severe sagginess in their breasts. This is generally indicated when the nipple and areola – the dark-pigmented area surrounding the nipple – are located below the breast crease or when the breasts point downward. In a full mastopexy, an inverted T-incision is made around the areola, down to the breast crease, and along the breast fold. Excess tissue and skin is then removed, while the remaining tissue and skin is tightened and smoothed out. The breasts are ultimately lifted to a higher, more youthful position. Women with mild breast sag can sometimes be treated effectively with a less involved lift technique, but a full mastopexy is one of the most common approaches to a breast lift.
Also referred to as a donut mastopexy, this technique can be most effective for individuals whose breasts appear asymmetrical or have an irregular nipple position. With this approach, incisions made encircling the areola are used to remove excess tissue and skin while breasts are elevated and tightened. This method can reduce the diameter of the areolas and lift the nipple position approximately 2 centimeters. This technique is typically not an ideal method for women who are breastfeeding or planning to breastfeed.
Also known as a vertical breast lift, “lollipop” mastopexies can be an effective breast lift technique for women with medium-sized breasts and moderate to severe breast droopiness, or large-sized breasts with mild breast droopiness. A lollipop-shaped incision is made around the areola and down the middle of the breast to the breast crease. Extra skin and tissue are then removed and the breasts are tightened, smoothed, and elevated. With this unique incision type, more horizontal excess skin can be removed. This approach is typically utilized when a full mastopexy is unnecessary, but there is too much skin laxity or breast sag for a periareolar mastopexy.
What is Breast Lift Recovery Like?
After surgery, many patients initially think their breasts are too high and too tight. It takes several weeks for the breasts to settle and appear more natural-looking. Dr. Durst will recommend what type of bra to wear in the long term. Soreness associated with the surgery is mild to moderate and can be easily controlled by medications, which Dr. Durst will prescribe. Most patients take about a week off of work.
The results with breast lift are usually very, very dramatic in most patients. Pictures are taken at two months and again one year after surgery. Dr. Durst will recommend that you follow up with him over the years.
How Much Does a Breast Lift Cost?
As with any surgical procedure, there is no fixed cost of a breast lift and the price varies from patient to patient depending on their unique needs. Your personalized quote will be calculated based on a number of considerations unique to your custom-designed treatment plan, including:
- The amount of surgical work to be done
- Whether the surgery is performed in conjunction with other procedures
- The type of surgical technique utilized
- The potential length of the procedure
In general, the cost of a mastopexy will include fees for the surgeon, anesthesia, pre- and post-operative care, and the addition of breast implants (if a breast augmentation mastopexy is being pursued) as well as other operational expenses. The geographic location where the procedure is performed and the expertise of your plastic surgeon will also influence your total cost estimate. Fortunately, cosmetic enhancement in Alabama is generally more affordable when compared to coastal states. With all this in mind, patient reviews from RealSelf.com place the average cost of breast lift surgery in Huntsville between $6,500 and $7,400.
Dr. Durst will be sure to perform a thorough evaluation of your needs during a consultation and provide a complete breakdown of the costs associated with your surgery. Our team will then go over our accepted modes of payment as well as your financing options. We understand the need to bring the cost of surgery into your budget and we work with some of the leading plastic surgery financing companies in the nation to help you pay for your treatment over time. Options like CareCredit® and Prosper® Healthcare Lending offer a number of flexible low- to no-interest payment plans with affordable monthly installments for qualified applicants. If you have any questions or concerns regarding the price of a breast lift, please don’t hesitate to contact our office today.
Breast Lift and Augmentation
For complete rejuvenation of the breast aesthetic, many patients opt to undergo a breast lift and breast augmentation procedure simultaneously. This popular combination surgery, also known as a breast lift with implants or breast augmentation mastopexy, is designed to enhance breast volume and fullness while lifting the breasts to a more youthful positioning. This comprehensive approach typically allows an improved breast shape and overall contour as well as a minimized appearance of sag. A breast lift with implants is usually a very popular option for women who have undergone pregnancy or breastfeeding, or those who have lost breast volume and/or projection as a result of the natural aging process. Generally speaking, the surgery can yield the benefits of both procedures in a single operation for improved breast volume, projection, firmness, symmetry, and shape.
Will I Have Breast Lift Scars?
Any surgical operation will leave some degree of residual scarring; however, an experienced plastic surgeon is typically adept at placing incisions discreetly within the natural lines and contours of the body when possible for minimized visible scarring. In general, the extent of your breast lift scars will depend on the amount of sag that was corrected during your procedure. If you are considering a breast augmentation with implants, the same incisions for the breast lift component of surgery can often be used to insert the implants. In either case, any surgical scars will fade to some degree as time passes. Dr. Durst is very proficient performing breast lift surgery and always strives to ensure incision marks are well-concealed under a bra or bikini top.