Mastopexy, or breast lift, as it is commonly known is a Cosmetic Surgery procedure designed to lift and re-contour sagging breasts, or breasts that have lost volume following child bearing or weight loss. Mastopexy can be performed alone or in conjunction with the insertion breast Implants to help fill out volume in the ptotic (or droopy) breast.
Who is the best Candidate?
The best candidates for Mastopexy are women of good general health and whose breasts have become saggy and have lost volume with age, following child bearing or following weight loss. If you are planning on having children, it is wise to defer this type of Surgery until after having children, as it may affect your ability to breastfeed.
What to Expect
If you have Private Insurance, you may prefer to spend one night as an Inpatient in the Hospital. You are advised to check with your private fund that this procedure is covered. Many funds will not cover what they deem to be cosmetic surgery. Mastopexy may be considered medical if you have breastfed your children and your youngest child is over one year of age and younger than seven years old. A referral from your GP is required prior to proceeding with surgery.
In your consultation your surgeon will assess your individual needs based on your expectations, and desired outcome. The size and shape and the degree of ptosis (or loss of volume) of the breast will be assessed and the need for Implants discussed. If you are considering Breast Augmentation with Mastopexy, photographs from magazines of your ideal size may be of assistance. A Mammogram may be ordered as a routine preoperative test.
Breast lift, or Mastopexy, when performed by a qualified Plastic Surgeon, is a relatively simple Surgical technique providing you with better breast shape and fall, which can enhance your appearance and improve your self esteem and confidence. Your options and preferences can be discussed in full at your Consultation with your Surgeon.
Mastopexy is usually performed under a General Anaesthetic as a day patient in Hospital. During surgery an incision is made along the natural contour across the breast and around the nipple areolar area. If the nipple needs relocating, an incision is made as a keyhole around this area. The excess skin is then removed from under the breast, the nipple is relocated and the flaps of skin to the sides of this area are brought down, around and together to reshape the breast. The wounds are sutured and a dressing and bandage applied.
If you elect for insertion of implants, the implant is inserted in a pocket created under the chest wall muscle prior to suturing. Where possible, your surgeon prefers to use a Le Jour Mastopexy which eliminates the transverse scar, leaving a scar around the nipple and a vertical scar only. This reduced scar is less noticeable in swimwear and evening wear. A drain is inserted in each breast to drain away excess fluid, which may collect postoperatively.
All surgery carries some risk and uncertainty. It is impossible to predict every outcome because everyone is different. Mastopexy is normally a safe procedure providing the clients have been carefully selected, the Surgeon is adequately trained in the procedure as well as having training in general surgery. Complications in the short term include; infection, this can be treated with dressings and antibiotics and haematoma, or a collection of fluid which may need to be drained. Some deficit in sensation of the breast and nipple will persist for up to six months or longer.
It will be necessary to have someone to help you at home in the early postoperative period as you will need to rest for several days postoperatively. You will be unable to drive a car in the first few days due to swelling of the area and reduced arm mobility as a result of discomfort. You will be asked to avoid lifting your arms high above your head for several weeks after your surgery so as not to put excessive strain on the suture line in its early healing stage.