Breast Lift

CANDIDATES:
Women who are generally satisfied with their breast size but unhappy with the breasts lack of firmness, or the fact that the nipples point to the floor. This is due to a loss of the skins' elasticity, caused by weight loss, pregnancy, breast-feeding or just the passage of time.

OBJECTIVE:
To elevate and reshape sagging breasts by removing excess skin and repositioning the nipples. The breast lift will restore a more youthful appearance. There are cases where the breasts develop into different sizes, sometimes quite markedly different and in these instances an implant, often on one side only, is inserted in conjunction with a breast lift to increase the size and help restore the breast to its normal position.

INCISIONS AND TECHNIQUE
The incisions for a breast lift vary according to three different techniques; the "inverted T," is one incision around the nipple, one in the fold below the breast and a third vertical incision joining them. The second is the "vertical" technique with two incisions, one around the nipple and a vertical one. The third is called "periareolar" and uses only an incision around the nipple. The choice of the appropriate technique varies according the type of breast and the desired shape. More incisions usually mean a better shape can be achieved and this should be discussed during the consultation.

OPERATING TIME
1 to 3 hours

ANESTHESIA
Local with sedation, or general anesthesia as required for each case.

IN/OUT PATIENT:
Usually scheduled as an outpatient procedure but can include an overnight stay depending on the patient.

RECOVERY PERIOD:
There will be temporary soreness and sensitivity, swelling, a change in nipple sensation and possibly bruising for two to three weeks.

RECOVERY TIME:
A return to work, if not physically strenuous, is possible in a few days. The scar will fade after several months but can be up to a year or more in some cases. Dressings will be changed over several days immediately post operatively. Showering is permitted between three and seven days following surgery, and stitches are removed after 7 days. A support bra is worn for a month, driving is permitted after two weeks and exercise after two to three weeks.

RISKS:
Nipple or breast sensation may change, usually temporarily. Surgical removal and replacement of the implants may be required to treat capsular contracture, which can provoke breast hardness.

DETAILS:
A computer consultation helps tremendously when choosing the appropriate new breast size and shape. The patients' image can be seen with various breast sizes and the location of the incision is chosen.

DURATION OF THE RESULTS
Results are variable but usually long-lasting, however implants may require removal or replacement. Mammograms are routinely prescribed annually after the age of 40. Significant weight loss can affect the result. Pregnancy and breast-feeding can alter breast size in an unpredictable way, although breast implants do not affect pregnancy or the ability to breast-feed. If, with aging, the appearance of the breasts change, it is possible to undergo a breast lift to improve contour.