While there may be a lot of opinions about what is the “perfect” breast size, there’s a lot more agreement that a perky, elevated breast shape is very attractive. If you’re considering a breast lift (mastopexy), you may want to recapture the more youthful look you enjoyed before pregnancy or weight gain, or you may just want to reverse the inevitable sagging caused by age and gravity.
Breast Lift and Implants
Dr. Otto Placik is a breast lift specialist and board-certified plastic surgeon serving Chicago and its suburbs. Dr. Placik has helped thousands of women like you to enhance the appearance of their breasts. In fact, he offers a full menu of breast enhancement procedures that you may want to consider, including combining a breast lift with breast implants or fat transfer breast reduction surgery.
Please contact us online or call our Chicago or Arlington Heights plastic surgery offices for more information on breast lift surgery, including prices.
About Breast Lift Surgery from Chicago Plastic Surgeon Dr. Placik
A breast lift is a surgical procedure designed to raise and re-contour sagging breasts. Often, the breasts lose volume and elasticity after pregnancy, because of weight fluctuations, or through the natural aging process. By lifting and reshaping your breasts, a mastopexy procedure can give you a more youthful looking figure.
Here is a diagram of the different grades of breast sagging (known as “ptosis”):
Breast Lift Diagrams
The breast lift technique is similar to the surgical steps used in breast reduction. It involves repositioning the nipple and tightening of the skin of the breasts as well. By itself, a breast lift will somewhat reduce overall breast volume, so some women will choose to combine breast augmentation and lift (augmentation mastopexy) to achieve increased size and an enhanced breast shape.
Here is a diagram of the most common approaches to breast lift surgery:
Dr. Placik performs breast lifts on an outpatient basis, meaning you do not need a hospital stay. Either a local or general anesthetic can be used. Dr. Placik is careful to limit incisions wherever possible to minimize the appearance of scarring. Most women find that any scars that remain are an acceptable tradeoff given the improvement they see in their breast position and shape.
You can return home the same day as your surgery to begin your recovery. Dr. Placik and his staff will carefully review your post-op instructions. Most of our breast lift patients are ready to return to work and light activity within a few days after surgery, but you will need to limit heavier physical activity and exercise for about a month.
Dr. Otto Joseph Placik Board-Certified Plastic Surgeon
Dr. Placik is a board certified plastic surgeon in Chicago and an active member of The American Society of Plastic Surgeons. He received his medical degree from Northwestern University where he also completed residencies in general and plastic and reconstructive surgery.
A breast lift is a surgical procedure designed to improve the position of sagging breasts and/or the position of the nipple and areola on the breast mound. To accomplish this, Dr. Placik will reshape the breast tissue to form rounder and smoother breast mounds through small incisions around the areolas. He will then lift the breasts to a higher position on the torso, tighten the breast skin around the new breast shape, and excise any extra. The result is a higher, more youthful bust line combined with improved breast shape and texture. Breast lifts will vary in their design according to the degree of ptosis.
The best candidates for a breast lift are women hoping to correct droopiness in their breasts. Sagging, or ptosis, is often a symptom of aging and gravity, but can also affect women as a result of weight fluctuations or large breast volume. Breasts can also take on a droopy appearance after pregnancy or nursing. Candidates should be in good overall physical and mental health, at a stable weight, non-smokers and have realistic expectations about their results.
Women with some sagging in their breasts, a lack of firmness or fullness, or downward-pointing nipples may be good candidates for this procedure. A breast lift will raise and reshape the breasts, but keep in mind that additional pregnancies and/or weight fluctuation can compromise your results. A breast lift may also interfere with your ability to nurse or lactate or breastfeed. If you plan to have more children, you may want to hold off on your breast lift surgery until your family is complete.
Actually, mastopexy is not a notoriously painful procedure. Of course you will feel nothing during the procedure itself, thanks to the anesthesia. Post-operatively, discomfort and soreness in the surgical area is to be expected, but very few of our patients have difficulty with the pain. Follow Dr. Placik’s post-operative instructions exactly to minimize discomfort and the risk of complications.
Breast lift pricing depends on several factors, including the extent of surgical correction required and whether you are having additional procedures such as breast reduction or breast augmentation. In the case of augmentation, the price will also include your selected breast implant type. Other fees that are a part of the total breast lift price include charges paid to the operating facility and the anesthesiologist. Dr. Placik and his staff strive to provide excellent value and can help you with cosmetic surgery financing to make your procedure even more affordable.
The fees will vary according to the extent of the procedure, length of the operation, facility location, anesthesia technique, ancillary procedures such as augmentation or pain pump insertion, and many other factors. Dr. Placik and his staff will provide an estimate of fees at the conclusion of the consultation and offer options for financing.
The incisions needed for a breast lift will vary considerably depending on the amount of lifting you require. For minimal lifts, Dr. Placik places the incisions very inconspicuously for barely noticeable scarring. Incisions may be placed around the border of the areola (either partially or all the way around), down the center of the breast directly beneath the areola, and in the natural folds of the breast. (See incision diagram above.) In addition, for women with a minimal amount of breast sagging, Dr. Placik can perform a modified version of the circumareolar incision known as the Benelli Lift. As you can see in the diagram below, this approach limits incisions to around the areola, for minimal visible scarring following surgery. Incision options depend on your breast size, the amount of lifting, and Dr. Placik’s surgical recommendation. Breast lift scars will be noticeable for several months after surgery but should fade dramatically over time.
Everyone heals a little differently, so it can be difficult to set a timetable without a physical exam and a review of your medical history. Normally, you’ll want to take it easy for 3 to 4 days before engaging in everyday activities or returning to work. If you combine your lift with breast augmentation, this can slightly prolong your recovery. In general, we instruct our patients to wear a special support bra and refrain from heavy exercise for about 3 to 4 weeks. Mild discomfort and soreness are common for the first few days after surgery, and Dr. Placik can provide prescription pain medication if necessary. Swelling and numbness is to be expected and can last from one month to several months.
Recovery after a breast lift is different for each woman, but it’s advisable to take at least a few days of downtime. You may experience some bruising or soreness, and Dr. Placik will ask you to wear a special post-surgical bra as you recover. If you combine your breast lift with augmentation, your recovery period may be slightly longer. You can ease back into light exercise over the next several weeks, and any lingering discomfort or swelling should dissipate over the first 6 months or so following surgery.
During your initial consultation at our office in Chicago or Arlington Heights, Dr. Placik will review all the risks, side effects, and complications associated with breast lift surgery and make sure you fully understand all the information. Reaction to the anesthesia, infection, bleeding, loss of nipple sensitivity, scarring, tissue damage, and asymmetry are a few of the rare but possible side effects.
Dr. Placik promises you his best possible care and attention. If you would like to schedule a private consultation to learn more about breast lift surgery, please contact us online or call us at 847-398-1660.
Although a breast lift can enhance your figure, the procedure is not meant to increase or decrease breast size. For this reason, many women often combine implants or fat transfer augmentation in order to restore the lost upper breast fullness that occurs with breast ptosis. In the event you have a breast lifts alone, you should have the same amount of breast tissue after your breast lift as you did before. However, reshaping the breast tissue and tightening the breast skin can mean that you wear a different bra size after your breast lift.
Breast lifts are often combined with other breast enhancement procedures. For instance, many women choose to undergo a combined breast lift and breast augmentation to increase cup size as well as improve breast placement or fix sagging. Additionally, breast reduction surgery incorporates elements of a breast lift, as the breast tissue must be reshaped after reducing breast volume. It’s also common for women with large breasts to experience some degree of ptosis.
A breast lift is performed under either local or general anesthesia as an outpatient procedure. Dr. Placik takes special care to make incisions as minimal and discreet as possible. Incision placement will depend upon the approach that Dr. Placik takes for your particular procedure, which you can discuss with him during your consultation. The duration of the surgery depends on whether you are combining your breast lift with any additional procedures. While the exact approach may vary, in general, Dr. Placik will first reshape the breast tissue to create a rounder appearance. He will then drape the breast skin over the new shape, tighten the remainder, and excise any extra tissue that sags below the breast crease. He will also reposition the nipples to a natural, central location and resize the areolas if necessary.
Breast lift results should be long-lasting. However, your breasts will continue to change in response to weight fluctuations, age, or any future pregnancies. Many women enjoy the benefits of their breast lift for the rest of their lives, while others may need an update in the future.
To meet with Dr. Placik, arguably the best in plastic surgery Chicago has to offer, you can request a consultation online or call our Arlington Heights office at 847-398-1660 or our Chicago office at 312-787-5313 to schedule your appointment. We look forward to meeting with you and helping you look your very best.
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