At some point, every woman deals with sagging breasts. After pregnancy, this can become more pronounced. But just because it’s common doesn’t mean you have to live with breasts that you are unhappy with. Many women choose breast lift surgery to help them restore a more youthful, aesthetically pleasing breast contour.
The benefits of breast lift surgery go beyond aesthetics. With firmer, better-positioned breasts, bras will fit more comfortably, finding figure-flattering swimsuits can be much easier. And when you feel more confident in your appearance, you may find this enhances your life in many other ways.
Is a Breast Lift Right You?
The decision to have a breast lift is personal, and women in Little Rock have this surgery for a variety of reasons. Many undergo a breast lift because pregnancy and nursing has taken its toll. Others have always been bothered by sagging breasts, and wish to improve their comfort and self-confidence.
Breast Augmentation vs Breast Lift
In general, a breast lift is ideal for women who are happy with the size of their breasts but unhappy with the shape and position. For those who have lost volume or who want to increase their natural breast size while also correcting sagging, a breast augmentation with lift can achieve this goal.
The Breast Lift Consultation: Your First Step
During a consultation, Dr. Branman will examine and evaluate your breasts to determine if surgery can make an improvement. He will discuss with you the various factors that can affect your results, such as your age, breast size, breast shape, and skin tone. Another topic to discuss is whether breast augmentation at the same time as a breast lift is a good option for you.
If breast lift surgery is an option and you wish to proceed, you may be advised to get a mammogram. Dr. Branman will also provide specific instructions on surgery preparation, including guidelines on eating, drinking, smoking, and taking or avoiding certain vitamins and medications.
Are you a candidate for a Breast Lift?
About Breast Lift Surgery with Dr. Branman
A breast lift is usually performed under general anesthesia on an outpatient basis, at our accredited surgical facility. The operation usually requires about 2-3 hours time.
During breast lift surgery, excess skin is removed from around the areola and the bottom of the breast, to tighten and lift the breast and nipple into a more attractive position. The nipple and areola are often moved to a higher position, typically in a location that is even with the breast crease.
Breast lift incision techniques
A number of different techniques can be used to perform a breast lift. The proper technique is largely dependent on how much your breasts are sagging. When determining what technique is best for you, Dr. Branman considers what will achieve the best aesthetic improvement with the smallest scar and the least amount of risk.
An anchor-shaped incision is the most common technique, which follows the natural contour of the breast. The incision outlines an area from which skin will be removed and defines the new location for the nipple. Skin is removed, the nipple is repositioned, and the breast is reshaped. Sutures are usually located around the areola, in a vertical line extending downwards from the nipple area and along the breast crease.
A peri-areolar (or donut) mastopexy technique may be utilized for patients with relatively small breasts and a minimal degree of sagging. This technique allows for smaller incisions around the areola.
There are other modified breast lift techniques that can be used as well. Dr. Branman will go over all of your options at your consultation.
How you’ll feel after surgery
After the surgery is complete, you’ll be given an elastic bandage or special bra to wear over the gauze dressings. Bruising and swelling should be expected for the first few days. Dr. Branman will prescribe pain medication to help alleviate discomfort. Stitches are removed after about 1 week.
After a short recovery period, your bandages or surgical bra will be replaced by a soft support bra, which must be worn for 3-4 weeks. Due to the swelling after surgery, patients should expect some temporary loss of feeling in the nipples and breast skin. Normal sensation typically returns over the next 6 weeks. In some patients, numbness can last a year or longer.
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How long does it take to recover from surgery?
Healing from surgery is a gradual process. Don’t expect to return to work right away. Most patients take a week or two, depending on how they feel. During the first 3-4 weeks, you shouldn’t be lifting or reaching high above your head. If you experience any unusual symptoms, don’t hesitate to call our office.
Dr. Branman will provide detailed instructions regarding recovery and the resumption of activities. You will need to avoid strenuous exercise, such as running or weight training, for about 1 month. After that, we recommend that you resume these activities slowly. If you become pregnant anytime after breast lift surgery, your ability to breast-feed should not be affected.
What do breast lift scars look like?
Dr. Branman makes every effort to ensure scars are inconspicuous, but it’s important to note that mastopexy scars will always be somewhat apparent. They will be red and slightly raised for a few months and gradually fade into thin white lines. You’ll still be able to wear low cut tops without revealing a scar.
The results of a breast lift won’t last a lifetime. Gravity, aging, pregnancy, or weight fluctuations can still change the appearance of the breasts over time. Those who undergo breast augmentation along with the breast lift often report longer-lasting results.
What are the risks of breast lift surgery?
A breast lift isn’t a simple surgery, but it is generally safe. All surgeries carry a risk of complications, including infection, reaction to anesthesia, or poor healing that results in prominent scars. You can reduce the likelihood of complications by closely following the instructions provided by Dr. Branman.
Learn more about a Breast Lift in Little Rock
In this video, our very own Registered Nurse April Gring walks you through the breast lift process – from prepping for surgery through your full recovery. For more information about surgical procedures at our surgery center, please watch our general surgery video here.
If you have questions or would like to learn more about your options for breast lift surgery, we are here to help. Contact us to schedule a consultation with Dr. Branman at our Little Rock Cosmetic Surgery office.