Which Breast Procedure is Suitable for me?
A Breast Lift, Breast Augmentation + Lift or Breast Reduction?
Women with sagging breasts or loss of breast volume will often wonder if their breasts can be enhanced with just an implant, or if a Breast Lift or Breast Reduction will be required to achieve a more aesthetically pleasing outcome.
There are a number of surgical techniques our surgeons can use to help you lift and/or inflate your breasts to create a more youthful appearance, including a Breast Augmentation, a Breast/or Nipple Lift, a combination of these procedures or a Breast Reduction.
The only way to determine which surgical procedure is suitable for your individual anatomy is to have our surgical assessment team thoroughly analyse the condition of your breasts (via images sent through with Assessment Form). A Plastic Surgeon will then determine which techniques will, in their expert option, create the best outcome for you
What is a Breast Lift?
Women may experience loss of breast volume and sagging (ptosis) for a number of reasons including pregnancy, weight loss/gain, aging, or even just your genetics! As the breasts droop, volume is lost and the skin surrounding the breasts stretches, resulting in breasts losing their youthful perky shape. A Breast Lift (or mastopexy) procedure can restore your breasts to their proper position on the chest, tighten the skin, even the breast size and shape and restore your areola to a more aesthetically pleasing position and shape.
What determines if you will require a breast lift?
Prior to having your breasts reviewed by a specialist and a Plastic Surgeon, some common signs you may require a Breast Lift are:
- If your breasts lack volume or firmness
- Your breast tissue sags below your breast crease
- Your nipples point downward
- Your nipples are positioned below the breast crease (see image below)
- You have asymmetry
- You have an unusual breast shape
A simple way to tell if you may require a Breast Lift, is to take a pen and place it under your breast crease. If the pen remains under your breast without you holding it, you may require a Breast Lift.
The most important factors that determine the level of breast sag include: The nipple position and the amount of breast tissue sagging below the crease. Anything beyond mild sagging (Grade 1 Ptosis), will require a Breast Lift Technique.
Breast Lift + Augmentation (Implants)
A Breast Lift alone will lift your breasts & nipples but generally reduce the overall size of your breasts and will add just minimal breast volume. If you have a significant amount of Breast tissue available and are happy with the size of your breasts in a non padded bra then, depending on your desired outcome, you may only require a Breast Lift (no implant). However, if you have minimal breast tissue available or hope to obtain a perkier appearance with upper pole fullness, an implant can be introduced to add size, shape and projection.
Some women who have mild sagging (grade 1 ptosis) can create more lift by undergoing a breast augmentation using a Teardrop implant. This shaped implant can push out the sagging breast tissue and create a natural perkier breast without needing a breast lift technique.
Overly large breasts can cause severe discomfort for some women, as well as numerous health issues and physical pain. Breast Reduction surgery involves removing fat, glandular tissue and skin (and muscle correction, if required) to reduce the size and weight of your breasts, alleviating pain and discomfort caused by the weight on your chest and creating a more aesthetically pleasing appearance and improve self-esteem and comfort.
Breast Reduction can be used in conjunction with breast implants to create fuller, firmer and perkier breasts.
You may be a candidate for breast reduction surgery if:
- You have overly large breasts
- You experience back, neck and shoulder pain caused by the weight of your breasts
- You have developed a skin condition beneath the breast crease
- Your breasts hang low and have stretched skin
- You have trouble purchasing bras to fit you and are often in discomfort from the straps supporting your breasts.
- You are a healthy weight
- You have realistic expectations
- You understand that weight gain and pregnancy may interfere with breast reduction results – See babies and breast implants
See here for details about Male Breast Reduction
Breast Lift & Breast Reduction Scaring
Breast Lift and Breast Reduction surgery does involve some scarring. Initially, your scars will be sensitive and quite noticeable. However, your wounds will fade over time (allow up to 12/24 months). The degree of fading will depend on your skin quality, your skin pigment and post-surgery care.
The most common technique used for a Breast Lift is a Full Mastopexy Lift (Anchor Lift), which creates a scar from around your areola and down to your breast fold and under your breast crease. – Like an Anchor. See here for a full detailed list of surgical Breast Lift techniques.
Breast Reduction techniques include either a Lollipop incision (small breast reduction) or an Anchor incision (for larger breasts).
There are scar-minimizing products available that may help scars fade such as oils, creams and gels which aim to reduce the severity – again the effectiveness depends on the individual. Often these products cannot be used until a certain waiting period to ensure there is no risk of infection. Therefore, it is vital that scar creams are used ONLY with your surgeons consent.
Breastfeeding after a Breast Lift or Breast Reduction Surgery
It is possible (however very rare) for women who have had a Breast Lift or in combination with Augmentation or Breast Reduction surgery to breastfeed after pregnancy. However, pregnancy can seriously effect your outcome and alter the shape, size and height of your breasts. Therefore, it is advised that you wait until you have had children before undergoing this procedure. Revision surgery will most likely be required if you do fall pregnant post surgery. If this is something you are concerned about, please research this further and discuss with your Surgeon during consultation. See here for further information about Breastfeeding after Breast Surgery
Breast Lift & Breast Reduction longevity
A Breast Reduction, Breast Lift or Breast Lift + Augmentation cannot permanently correct your breast shape. Over time, you will most likely experience the effects of aging and gravity taking place on your breasts. This is something that is completely unavoidable, even with surgery. In this case, revision surgery will be required down the track. Generally, a breast augmentation + Lift will have a shorter longevity than a breast lift. This is due to the weight of the implants that may cause your breast to droop. Your results may be affected by the elasticity of your skin, your aftercare – not following surgeon’s instructions & not wearing appropriate support garments and falling pregnant and breastfeeding.
Ideal candidates for a Breast Reduction or Breast Lift are those who have realistic expectations, have undergone extensive research and understand the associated risks and complications of the procedure thoroughly.
Complete our Online Assessment Form to receive your personalised Surgical Recommendation!