Breast Lift Surgery with Women Surgeons
Breast lift surgery, medically known as maxtoplexy, is an elective procedure designed to lift and change the shape and contour of a woman’s breasts. After pregnancy and breast feeding, the top portion of the breasts may lose some of its elasticity and lack fullness. Through the aging process, a woman’s breasts begin to sag. Moderately sized breasts may appear pendulous. The nipples may become enlarged or shift position on the chest wall, at times pointing downward. Breast lift surgery does not change the size of a woman’s breasts, but creates an uplifted and rejuvenated appearance.
There are several techniques involved in breast lift surgery. A full breast lift involves three incisions. An incision is made around the nipple and aerola. Another incision is made vertically from the bottom edge of the aerola to the crease under the breast, often called an anchor or T-incision. A third incision is made horizontally beneath the breast, following the natural curve of the crease. Excess skin and tissue is removed and the aerola is shifted or lifted to a higher position. The size of the aerola can be reduced if necessary. The skin above the aerola is brought down and pulled together beneath the breast until the desired shape, fullness and contour is achieved. During the procedure the nipples and aerolas remain attached to underlying skin and tissue, which minimizes the potential loss of sensation to the nipples and allows for the ability to breast feed. Following full breast lift surgery, scars will be located around the aerola, the anchor incision area and in the crease under the breasts. The scars around the aerola are usually concealed by the color of the aerola. The anchor incision usually heals with minor visibility that fades over time. The scar in the crease line, which is usually the largest, is concealed by the shape of the breast. These scars, when healed, are not normally visible through clothing, lingerie or swim wear.
Several modified breast lift procedures are available, depending on the size and shape of the breasts, nipple positioning and the desired outcome. A concentric breast lift involves the removal of a ring-shaped area of skin and tissue around the aerola, giving the appearance of uplifted nipples. A crescent lift, in addition to the removal of the ring-shaped area of skin and tissue around the aerola, also involves the removal of tissue from the area above the aerola, raising the nipple position on the chest wall. Women undergoing breast implant surgery, known as breast augmentation, may choose to include breast lift surgery during the same procedure.
Breast lift surgery is usually performed in an outpatient surgical facility or in an on-site operating suite located in the surgeon’s office. The procedure, which normally takes approximately three hours, is performed under general anesthesia. Risks are minimal, but may include bleeding, infection, or scar formation. Rarely, a loss of nipple sensation may occur. Recovery from breast lift surgery is different for each woman. Surgical drains are usually removed a few days after surgery, and stitches are usually removed within two to three weeks of surgery. The breasts may be bruised following surgery and incision sites may be tender. A support bra or padded bra is usually recommended for continual wear during the first two weeks of recovery. Pain medication is usually prescribed for discomfort following surgery.
As most breast lift surgery is cosmetic in nature, the procedure is not normally covered by insurance. In the event breast lift surgery is performed in conjunction with reconstructive surgery following a mastectomy, insurance coverage may be available. Costs of breast lift surgery can vary and often include the surgeon’s fee, the surgical facility costs, as well as anesthesia and medication costs. Costs can be contained if the procedure is performed in the surgeon’s on-site operating facility as opposed to a hospital setting. Although most plastic surgeons require payment in full prior to the surgery, many offer payment plans through financial institutions.
The choice of an experienced plastic surgeon is essential when considering breast lift surgery. It is important that the plastic surgeon is board certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery and that procedures are performed only in accredited medical facilities. Most plastic surgeons are members of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons. A round-shaped logo or symbol should be proudly displayed on business cards, brochures and websites of surgeon members. The selection of a plastic surgeon is a personal decision that should be based on communication, knowledge, expertise and trust.