Breast Lift (Mastopexy)
Your complete guide and quick links to everything you want to know about Breast Lift in Sydney!
What Will A Breast Lift Achieve?A Breast Lift is one of the most commonly requested cosmetic breast procedures owing to the loss of volume and sagging that commonly follow pregnancy, breastfeeding, ageing and weight loss. Lifting your breasts to a more attractive position on your chest wall, with or without implants, will dramatically improve the appearance of your breasts as well as allow you to once again wear the clothes and swimmers of your choice.
Why Do Breasts Sag & How Does A Breast Lift Work?
As with other parts of our bodies that change over time, breasts also change. They lose firmness and volume, the internal supporting ligaments become weaker, and the skin loses its elasticity.
As a result, the breasts start to droop. These natural ageing changes are accelerated by pregnancy, breastfeeding and major weight loss.
The only treatment for the sagging, known medically as ‘Ptosis’, is surgery, and the degree of ptosis will determine the design of the Breast Lift required.
In contrast to a Breast Reduction where excess breast tissue is removed, a Mastopexy does NOT remove any breast tissue. It only removes the excess loose skin so your breasts will not end up smaller. Removing the loose skin has the effect of tightening the breast envelope which, in turn, causes the breast to move upwards to a higher and more attractive position on your chest wall.
If you are happy with the size of your breasts and are only bothered by the sagging, you only need to have a Breast Lift, known medically as a ‘Mastopexy’.
If on the other hand, you have also suffered loss of breast volume with the sagging and want your breasts to also be fuller, you can have implants inserted at the same time as the Breast Lift. This is then called an ‘Augmentation Mastopexy’.
Who Most Commonly Requests A Breast Lift?
The main groups of women presenting for a Breast Lift are:
- Young women with developmentally large breasts that have simply sagged from their sheer weight.
- Women following pregnancy and breastfeeding due to the enlargement of the breasts in preparation for breastfeeding. Unfortunately, after breastfeeding has finished, the breasts do not return to their pre-pregnancy state because:
- there has been a loss of breast volume due to shrinkage of the milk glands; and
- the over-stretched breast skin does not return to its former tightness.
- Post-menopausal women due to the progressive loss of breast tissue and skin elasticity.
- Women of any age following major weight loss.
Do I Need Implants As Well As The Lift?
If you are happy with your breast size and only wish to correct the sagging, you only need a straightforward Breast Lift.
If, on the other hand, you have also lost considerable breast volume and wish to increase your breast size, you will need to have implants inserted at the same time as the Breast Lift, and this is then known as an Augmentation Mastopexy.
PLEASE NOTE: If you have only a minor degree of Ptosis known as ‘Pseudo-Ptosis’ where the breast mound has only slightly fallen below the breast crease but the nipple is still well above it, you may not need a Breast Lift at all because minor degrees of ptosis can usually be corrected by implants alone.
Degrees of Ptosis
Breast Lift Designs & Techniques
Various patterns and designs of Breast Lift exist.
Which technique you require will basically depend on your degree of Ptosis.
Whereas very minor degrees of Ptosis (known as Pseudo-Ptosis) can be corrected by inserting implants alone, more advanced degrees of Ptosis require one of the following types of Mastopexy – each given its descriptive name based on the pattern of the incisions:
1. Crescent Mastopexy
This is the simplest form of Breast Lift and involves removing a crescent of skin above the areola. Sometimes, the incision needs to be extended a little sideways at each end in which case it then changes its name to a ‘Batwing’ Mastopexy as shown in the above illustration. This technique delivers only a minimal degree of ‘lift’ and therefore is rarely an option for most patients needing a Mastopexy.
2. Benelli Lift (‘Donut Lift’)
3. Vertical Mastopexy (‘Lollipop Lift’)
4. Wise Pattern Mastopexy (‘Anchor Lift’)
How Is A Breast Lift Done?
- All Breast Lifts are performed in a Licensed Hospital under General Anaesthesia administered by our Specialist Anaesthetist.
- Naturally, having it done under a General Anaesthetic, you will feel no discomfort at all.
- Depending on your circumstances and how your surgery went, your Surgeon will either allow you to return home or have you stay overnight in which case you can return home the next day after the doctor checks you.
- If you are not staying in hospital, you will be allowed to leave after 1-2 hours in Recovery. However, you must not drive or go home alone. You must be accompanied by a responsible adult and have someone with you at home during the first 24 hours.
Potential Risks & Complications of Breast Lift Surgery
Although surgery and anaesthesia nowadays are considered generally safe, both do have potential risks and complications which include:
Specific to Breast Lift Surgery:
- Post-operative bleeding and possible hematoma formation which could require a return to Theatre for drainage.
- Seroma (fluid collection under the breast skin) requiring one or more aspirations.
- Fat Necrosis (death of fat tissue) within the breast leaving hard lumps for investigation.
- Asymmetry of the breasts or nipples.
- Numbness of the breast or nipple, usually temporary, rarely permanent.
- Partial or total loss of Nipple & Areola
- Raised & thickened incision scars if you are prone to them, or pigmented scars if you have brown or Asian skin.
- Allergic reaction to medications, sutures, dressings, or antiseptic solutions.
- Deep Venous Thrombosis (DVT) and its potential sequel of life-threatening Pulmonary Embolism: To reduce the risk of DVT, Calf Massagers can be applied for the entire duration of your surgery to prevent the blood in your leg veins from pooling and clotting.
- Adverse Reactions to Anaesthesia or Medication: The safety of anaesthesia nowadays in Australia is well established. Nevertheless, potential risks exist with all anaesthesia and unexpected reactions can occur. These may include nausea, vomiting, and allergic reactions ranging from minor to severe. Respiratory failure, heart failure, heart attack and stroke are very rare but documented risks of any anaesthesia.
Watch Our ‘Mastopexy’ Animation Video
The Cost of a Breast Lift (Mastopexy)
Breast Lift (no implants)
- Surgical Fee: $12,000 – $16,500 depending on the design of the ‘Lift’ required.
- Additional costs include Hospital Fee & Anaesthetist Fee.
- We will provide you with a detailed itemised quotation at the end of your Initial Consultation once your technique and duration of your surgery have been determined.
- Follow-up appointments for up to 6 months are included.