Mastopexy to Address Sagging in St. Louis
Breast lift surgery at the St. Louis-based West County Plastic Surgeons helps women who want to lift and reshape their breasts to appear more youthful and feminine. Breast sagging, also known as ptosis, can be caused by pregnancy, breastfeeding, weight loss, genetics, aging, or a combination of these factors. Our plastic surgeons perform breast lift surgery (also known as mastopexy) by removing redundant breast skin and lifting the drooping breast tissue to a more youthful position.
What to Expect from a Breast Lift
Typically, a breast lift for our patients requires an incision around the areola (the pigmented circle surrounding the nipple), as well as a vertical incision from the low point of the areolar circle to the base of the breast. This approach is often called a "keyhole incision." In some patients, incisions can be limited to a single circle around the areola, but in other cases, the keyhole incision is extended to include a linear component across the base of the breast.
In all cases, these incisions will allow the surgeon to excise excess tissue. A lack of stretched-out skin will cause the breast to sit higher on the chest once sutured.
Breast lift surgery may also involve repositioning the nipple so that it sits higher on the breast mound, pointing upward and outward instead of down toward the patient's navel. This gives the breast a perkier appearance.
Click here to view a video on breast lift surgery.
Breast Lift Details
Anesthesia: A mastopexy or breast lift is most often performed with the patient under general anesthesia at our surgical center in St. Louis.
Length of procedure: 90 to 120 minutes.
Estimated recovery time: Women typically return to work 5 to 7 days after their lift and should avoid significant physical activity for about 3 weeks. Visible bruising should resolve within 2 weeks, and swelling should begin to resolve within 3 weeks.
To learn how to prepare for a mastopexy at our practice, as well as what to expect afterward, click here to download our patient instructions.
Side effects: Common side effects include bruising and swelling. The shape of the breast may change over time, and the final result may not be realized for a few months.
Before-and-after photos breast lift results with and without implants: Click here
Lift, Augment or Both?
Sometimes patients need to decide between several breast surgery options: a breast augmentation, a breast lift, or a combination of the two. Many of our patients choose to combine breast lift with breast augmentation to improve the volume, cup size, and overall contour of their breasts. Larger breast implants can also raise nipple position by 1 to 2 centimeters, effectively providing a modest lift.
A mastopexy procedure is ideal for women who are satisfied with the size of their breasts, but would like them to appear "perkier," with raised nipples. A combination breast lift plus augmentation, also known as an augmentation mastopexy, is best suited for women who want their breasts to look perkier, but with more volume and fullness in the upper pole. In these cases, the breast lift elevates the tissues, while the augmentation utilizes a breast implant that increases size and achieves a certain desired shape.
Associated Procedures to Complement Breast Lift Surgery
Many of our St. Louis patients combine breast lift with the following kinds of procedures to achieve optimal aesthetic results:
- Simultaneous augmentation and breast lift. As noted above, some women find that adding volume while simultaneously removing excess skin and moving the nipples results in the desired shape, size, and position of their breasts.
- Liposuction. Tumescent liposuction, ultrasonic-assisted liposuction, or SMART laser-assistedliposuction can suction out excess fat sitting in stubborn pockets on the sides, thighs, back, and buttocks. This procedure provides a nice complement to refining the breasts with mastopexy surgery.
- Tummy tuck. Since sagging, small, and even asymmetrical breasts can be caused by massive weight loss, women who are good candidates for this procedure often find that they can also benefit from a tummy tuck. Also known as an abdominoplasty, this procedure removes lax abdominal skin and restores abdominal muscle tone. Sagging skin in many areas of the body is a common complaint from women who have found that their shape changed after pregnancy and childbirth. Multiple procedures can be combined into a "Mommy Makeover." Our plastic surgeons can combine breast lift and "mommy makeover" procedures safely and effectively.
Combining breast lift and augmentation with other procedures can be performed efficiently and safely. Click here to read Dr. Marissa Tenenbaum's article on combining breast surgery and abdominoplasty.
To schedule your consultation for breast lift in St. Louis, contact our office by calling (314) 996-8800, or requesting your consultation online today.