Pregnancy and breastfeeding, the gain and subsequent loss of a good deal of weight, even the simple process of aging all can leave a woman’s breasts flattened, sagging, and with less volume. A breast lift with Dr. Kimmel can return your breasts to a higher position on the chest.
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Weakening of our tissues with age makes the ligaments that attach the breasts to the pectoral muscles stretch. Changing size with pregnancy or weight gain causes the skin to stretch. A breast lift, clinically termed a mastopexy, aims to return the breasts to a higher position on the chest. To accomplish this, excess skin is removed and tissue is repositioned to raise and firm the breasts. In most cases, the nipples and areolae are repositioned to match the higher position.
The first question to consider is if you plan on having additional children in the future. If so, a possible breast lift will need to wait until after that child. Why? Your breast size will again fluctuate, plus breastfeeding will affect volume. This will nullify the results you will have gained with your breast lift.
If you aren’t going to have any more children, these are the existing issues with your breasts that a breast lift can address:
It’s important to note that a breast lift doesn’t affect the size of the breasts; it simply brings them back up to a higher position. A lift doesn’t change the fullness or roundness in the upper portion of the breasts. If you want to add fullness or size, adding implants to the breast lift procedure will accomplish that.
While breast lifts do not decrease breast size, they do bring the breasts to a higher position on the chest, removing some of the volume that has collected lower on the sagging breasts. Lifts also can’t return volume to the upper portion of the breasts. If you’d like to return some lost volume or if you simply want to add some size and shape to your breasts, Dr. Kimmel can easily add augmentation to your breast lift. Because the breasts already have incisions for the lift procedure, inserting implants is very easy. Plus, there isn’t any additional recovery, as you would have if you had the procedures performed separately.
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Dr. Kimmel adapts each breast lift procedure to the unique needs of every patient. Different incisions are used depending on the degree of sagging and excess skin involved. There are three incision options.
Once the incision has been made, Dr. Kimmel lifts and reshapes the breast tissue to reverse the effects of sagging and stretching. In the lollipop and anchor incisions the nipples and areolae will be relocated to a higher position on the breasts to match the new profile. Dr. Kimmel can also make the areolae smaller. The final step is to trim away excess sagging skin.
If you’ve opted to add augmentation to your breast lift, implants are added at this point. Dr. Kimmel creates a pocket for the implants and then places them. Because incisions are already made, augmentation with a breast lift doesn’t require any additional incisions.
Your surgery will be performed in our nationally accredited ambulatory surgery center, Keystone Surgery Center. The procedure usually takes from 1½ to 2 hours.
For the first couple of days after your surgery, you may need pain medication. You will need to wear a sports-style bra 24-hours-a-day for the next month. Swelling will last a couple of weeks, and will depend in part on your incision type. Most patients can return to work in about one week, but any strenuous exercise or heavy lifting needs to be avoided for 4-6 weeks after surgery. This is especially important for activity that causes your breasts to move. By being prudent with this advice, your scar tissue can reach its maximum strength. This will also allow the scarring to fade more dramatically with time.
Breast lifts done with the lollipop or anchor incision methods create noticeable scarring on the bottom of the breasts. This will fade with time, but is an inevitable part of this surgery.
The sagging and excess skin removed with your breast lift are permanently gone. Of course, your body will continue to age and your tissues will continue to weaken and sag. Still, any future sagging will start from a much better place.
The only way to really negate any of your results would be to gain and lose a large amount of weight, or to become pregnant again.
If you’ve opted for augmentation with your breast lift, the added fullness and projection gained with the implants will also enhance the longevity of your lift. However, implants may have a finite lifespan, so you might need to have your implants replaced at some point during your lifetime.
When considering a breast lift, the experience of your surgeon is incredibly important. Dr. Kimmel has extensive experience with this procedure and is board-certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery. He has over 15 years of clinical practice experience, and is a member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) and the American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery.
For more details on this procedure or to schedule a consultation, please call Robert M. Kimmel, MD, FACS, PC at (570) 622-2900, (570) 455-4252 or contact us via email.