Every woman experiences sagging or drooping breasts as she ages or goes through body changes such as pregnancy, breastfeeding, and rapid weight loss. The profile and shape of a woman’s breasts can have a significant impact on overall body contour and may affect the clothing you wear and your confidence in your appearance. A breast lift, or mastopexy, can help remove excess skin and tighten up surrounding tissue to give you a younger, perkier look.
If you’re interested in a breast lift or have questions about breast surgery, please contact North Texas Plastic Surgery in Dallas today at (877) 629-6468 to schedule your consultation. Our plastic surgeons and skilled medical staff serve patients in Plano, Southlake, Dallas and surrounding areas of Fort Worth, Texas.
Our Dallas-area patients often come to their consultation equipped with thorough questions about the process and procedure, which include:
- Do I Need a Breast Lift?
- What are the Different Types of Breast Lifts?
- Do I Need Breast Implants and a Breast Lift?
- Can I Reduce My Breast Size with a Breast Lift?
- How Long Do Breast Lift Results Last?
- Who Can Have a Breast Lift?
- Whats the Difference Between a Lift and Breast Augmentation?
- Can I Breastfeed After a Breast Lift?
- What Should I Expect During Recovery?
- Is Financing Available for Breast Lifts?
- Your Breast Lift Consultation at North Texas Plastic Surgery
Do I Need a Breast Lift?
Women can experience breast sag for a wide range of reasons. For example, pregnancy and nursing cause breasts to become larger. After nursing, the breasts contract to their original size. If the breast skin doesn’t also contract — as it often doesn’t — the breasts appear saggy. The same thing can happen to women who lose a large amount of weight, as this also causes the breasts to reduce in volume. Breast sag affects your entire silhouette and can even change the way that clothes fit on your body.
If you’re not sure if you need a breast lift, you can try the “Pencil Test” in which you place a pencil in the crease below your breast. If the pencil stays in place when you remove your hand, you most likely need a breast lift. You can also judge the need for a lift by looking at your current nipple position. For example:
- If your nipples are below the crease of your breasts when not wearing a bra
- If your nipples point downward
- If your breast shape is flat or elongated
- If the skin on your breasts is visibly stretched
- If the volume of your breasts doesn’t “match” the amount of skin that covers them
What are the Different Types of Breast Lifts?
The breast lift procedure involves the relocation of the areolas and the physical lifting and tightening of the breast skin and tissues. Depending on the degree of sagging, you’ll have one of four potential techniques during your breast lift:
- Crescent Lift: The least-invasive breast lift procedure. It only involves removing small crescents of skin above the nipples. This procedure is usually performed to improve the position of the nipples.
- The Benelli Lift: Performed when sagging is mild, or when the symmetry of the nipples needs to be corrected. In this procedure, the incision is shaped like a donut around the areola, and excess skin is removed in a ring shape.
- Lollipop Lift: For women with moderate or pronounced breast sagging. The incision is made around the nipple and extends vertically to the crease of the breasts.
- Anchor Lift: performed on breasts that have pronounced sagging. The incision is made along the breast crease, from the crease to the nipple and around the nipple, forming an anchor shape. The anchor lift is the most intensive kind of breast lift.
Do I Need Breast Implants and a Breast Lift?
The primary reason patients need a breast lift is they have more skin than they have breast tissue. Because of this excess skin, the breasts appear deflated and start to sag. This problem can be corrected by adding breast volume, removing extra skin, or by a combination of the two.
If a person chooses to add volume to help fill out the sagging skin, then breast implants or a fat transfer breast augmentation (which uses fat from some other part of the body to increase the size of the breasts) may be the best choice. The advantage of adding breast volume at the time of your breast lift is that it will decrease the amount of skin that needs to be removed which will, in turn, shorten the scar length. More importantly, it will give the breasts more size and also improve the breast shape, specifically adding more fullness to the top of the breasts (the upper pole). This will then give you fuller and more attractive cleavage.
If maximizing cleavage and fullness at the top of the breasts is important to you, then it is best to add volume with a breast augmentation. If a reduction in size is preferred, then a mastopexy without breast augmentation is the right choice.
Dr. Obaid prefers to perform breast augmentation with lift in one procedure. He finds that decreasing the number of surgeries and recoveries that a patient has to go through to just one is by far the safest option. In addition, because the lift is being performed at the same time as the breast augmentation, the breast lift and shape can be tailored specifically to the augmented breast as opposed to some abstract idea. This leads to a much more consistent and accurate result from the procedure.
Can I Reduce the Size of My Breasts with a Breast Lift?
Our studies show that without trying to make the breasts smaller, a breast lift alone typically reduces the breast approximately one to one and a half cup sizes. If you desire a further reduction in breast size at the time of your breast lift, this can absolutely be accomplished.
How Long Do Breast Lift Results Last?
No one can promise how long the results of a breast lift will last as this is highly dependent upon weight and hormonal fluctuations, pregnancies, and innate skin quality. That being said, most patients expect to see a significant improvement in their breasts for 10-15 years after a breast lift.
It should be noted that if you become pregnant, breastfeed, or gain or lose a significant amount of weight after having a breast lift it can affect the way your breasts look. Any of these circumstances can cause the breasts to change in volume enough that some or all of the sagging may return.
Since breast sagging is something that happens with age, your breasts will start to change in volume and shape as you get older, even after having a breast lift. However, these changes will happen later in life as a result of having a breast lift and may not be as dramatic if you do not become pregnant and your weight fluctuates very little.
Who Can Have a Breast Lift?
The breast lift procedure is suitable for people who are dissatisfied with the shape or volume of their breasts, or with the way their breasts droop. A good candidate for the breast lift procedure is at a stable weight, is a non-smoker, and is physically healthy. Maintaining a stable weight is essential because losing or gaining weight will alter how your breasts look and may change the results of a breast lift. Being in good general health and being a non-smoker is important because these factors help promote safe surgery and proper healing and recovery.
What’s the Difference Between a Lift and Breast Augmentation?
Breast augmentation is a procedure in which saline or silicone breast implants or fat from another area of your body is used to increase breast volume. In contrast, a breast lift involves the removal of the excess skin that causes the breasts to sag, along with tightening the surrounding tissue. The size of the breasts remains the same.
Note that while a breast lift doesn’t change the volume of the breasts, it is possible to combine this procedure with a breast augmentation or reduction. Therefore, if you have a breast lift, you can also choose to have your breast size increased or reduced at the same time.
Breast augmentation is best for addressing “deflation” where the upper pole of the breast is flattened or sunken, while a breast lift is best for “drooping” where the nipples and bulk of the breast tissue have sagged.
Can I Breastfeed After a Breast Lift?
Most women are able to breastfeed after a breast lift, but often they find that they need to calorie supplement with formula as they are not able to produce the same amount of milk as they used to. There is a small percentage of women who will not be able to breastfeed after their lift. This is a rare occurrence, but one that should be noted prior to the surgery.
What Should I Expect During Recovery?
A breast lift is a day surgery procedure, meaning that you will return home the same day as the surgery. Most patients are able to return to work or daily activity in approximately five days. You will need a friend or family member to drive you home and be with you for the first 24-48 hours. You will also need to avoid lifting objects heavier than 5-10 pounds and ensure you drink plenty of water, eat nutritional foods, and take medications as directed.
After three weeks, patients are cleared to begin cardio workouts such as jogging, running, and elliptical (without the use of the arms) exercises. At six weeks, patients are cleared to resume heavy lifting, strength training, and yoga work.
Is Financing Available for Breast Lifts?
North Texas Plastic Surgery offers three financing options: Alphaeon, Prosper™ Healthcare Lending, and CareCredit®. With the help of one of these choices, you can spread the cost of your procedure over several months or years.
Your Breast Lift Consultation at North Texas Plastic Surgery
At your initial breast lift consultation, Dr. Obaid will talk with you about your body goals and your options for surgery. Together, you’ll decide on the best way to proceed, whether it’s with a breast lift or a lift and augmentation or reduction.
You’ll be able to get a great idea of the results of the procedure before you have it, thanks to advanced imaging techniques that allow you to see your results in full 3D before you have the surgery! It can also be helpful to look at before-and-after photos of those who have been through the same procedure; this can give you a good idea of what kind of results you can expect from a breast lift.
At your consultation you’ll have the opportunity to ask any questions you have and voice any concerns, so you have all the information you need to make an informed decision about what’s right for you. The more information you have, the better equipped you are to make the right choice for you. In addition to the questions discussed above, these are great inquiries to make during your consultation:
- What Procedure will Give Me the Most Natural Look?
- How Can Scarring be Minimized or Hidden?
- How Can I Improve My Recovery Process?
- What Happens If I Have Complications During or After Surgery?
Your procedure will take place at our South Lake, Virtuoso Surgery Center, which is certified by the American Association for Accreditation of Ambulatory Surgery Facilities, a nationwide organization with standards of excellence that ensure accredited facilities provide care of the highest quality. Dr. Obaid is board-certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery and specializes in breast surgery.
Schedule Your Breast Lift Consultation in Dallas, Plano, or Southlake
If you’re interested in a breast lift or another form of plastic surgery, please contact our plastic surgeon in the Fort Worth area at (877) 629-6468 today to schedule your complimentary consultation. North Texas Plastic Surgery has three convenient locations in Southlake, Plano, and Dallas, Texas.