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Breast Lift

What is a breast lift?

Breast Lift Beverly Hills A breast lift is a surgical procedure that addresses sagging or abnormally positioned breast tissue. Also known as a mastopexy, this procedure involves repositioning the breast tissue and nipple into a more pleasing shape. Frequently, the areola is made smaller in diameter because it has enlarged with the changes in the breast. Mastopexy is frequently combined with breast augmentation to enhance the shape of the breasts.

A breast lift is a great way to turn back the hands of time. There are multiple reasons why the breast begins to droop over time. Changes in weight, genetics and breast feeding/pregnancy are just some of the things that can lead to a decrease in strength of the soft tissues supporting the breast. This leads to an appearance of the breast “sliding” down the chest. The breast begins to flatten and widens, the upper portion of the breast loses volume, and the breast itself develops a droop that many women find less attractive. Because all breasts are at least a little asymmetric, the changes that occur can enhance the asymmetry and the patient’s anxiety about the appearance.

What are the steps involved in a breast lift?

The plan for surgery always begins with an individualized consultation to assess your goals, anatomy, and what I am capable of achieving for you. I use medical history, physical examination, precise measurements and imaging to help determine the best option for you. Depending on the size and shape of your breasts, as well as the degree of sagging present, there are multiple options when it comes to placing your incisions.

For breasts that require less lift and where only the nipple needs to be lifted, the incisions are limited to the circumference of your areola. In other instances, the “lollipop incision” must circle the areola and extend down to where your breast meets your chest. If a significant amount of tissue must be removed, the “anchor incision” might circle the areola and extend down to the base of the breast and then a bit outward on each side.

I then lift and reshape the underlying breast tissue to create an ideal breast profile. Additional skin is removed and the incisions are closed in multiple layers. In most cases, your areola is reduced in size and repositioned higher on the breast.

I almost never use drains in my breast lifts.  The incisions are closed with tape.

Am I a good candidate for a breast lift?

Many women can benefit from a breast lift, but the best candidates for the procedure include women who:
  • Are non-smokers
  • Maintain a stable weight
  • Feel like their breasts sag, are flat especially at the top of the breast, or have lost volume
  • Have stretched skin and enlarged areolas
  • Have lopsided/asymmetric breasts

It is important that you go into the procedure in good health. When your body is performing at peak levels, your healing process will move forward smoothly. Prior to surgery, you should have a good exercise tolerance and good health for your incisions to heal the best they can.

It is also essential that you make an informed decision about your breast lift treatment plan. The women who are happiest with their results are those that have a thorough understanding of the process and how their breasts would look after their recovery.

About Nicholas Lahar, M.D. – Lahar Plastic Surgery

Plastic Surgeon Beverly Hills

Lahar Plastic Surgery

Nicholas Lahar, MD

Plastic Surgeon located in Beverly Hills, CA

A breast lift is a great way to achieve perkier, firmer breasts, and it’s an area of specialty of Nicholas Lahar, MD, of Lahar Plastic Surgery in Beverly Hills, California. Dr. Lahar has performed numerous breast lift procedures over the years, and has perfected his approach. He is able to deliver natural-looking breasts that enhance a woman’s appearance and restore confidence. Schedule an appointment online or over the phone today to get started.

Can I get a breast augmentation with a breast lift in the same procedure?

Breast augmentation and breast lift are two distinct procedures that are frequently combined to optimize breast aesthetics. The breast lift itself helps to reposition a sagging breast. Unfortunately, it is not powerful enough to provide upper pole fullness to the breast. While the breast will be improved in shape, the upper part of the breast will remain relatively flat in most cases. For some patients, this is more than enough and they are happy with this final outcome. However, for patients who are looking for a fuller look, breast augmentation can offer a wonderful way to address the breast’s upper pole.

I would use incisions that will already be made for the mastopexy to place the breast implant under the muscle. I then seal this incision closed to minimize any contamination to the breast implant. I then reshape the breast around the implant with the mastopexy to achieve the final shape.

In special and specific cases, there are certain times when I believe it is best to separate the breast augmentation and breast lift procedures. Breast augmentation and mastopexy is a complicated procedure that involves multiple moving parts. We are attempting to shape the breast, lift the nipple, get the implant into appropriate position, and we are trying to match both sides to one another. In patients who have very significant breast drop, it is frequently better to do the lift first and then add a second stage performing the breast augmentation. This allows for more control of each portion of the procedure. This recommendation is best given after an in-person consultation with me.

What other procedures are combined with mastopexy?

As mentioned above, breast augmentation is frequently combined with mastopexy to achieve a more aesthetic appearing breast. I also use liposuction to help shape the chest and breast. Frequently as we get older, we accumulate fat in the lateral chest and armpit area. By using liposuction to remove these fatty areas, it can help shape the breast further and even make the breast look more full. Additionally, fat can be injected into certain areas of the breast to help soften the curves, hide the implant on thinner patients, and narrow the cleavage lines.

Breast Lift FAQs

Breast lift and breast reduction are related to one another. Both procedures result in a rejuvenated breast that sits higher on the chest. They may also have similar scar patterns such as a scar around the areola, a scar around the areola and down the lower part of the breast (also known as a lollipop incision), and a full anchor pattern that adds a horizontal scar under the breast. Both surgeries will also result in some volume reduction in the breast because at least skin is removed to tighten and rejuvenate the breast. In a breast reduction significant amounts of breast tissue is removed in order to decrease the heaviness and size of the breast. Frequently, these large breasts have caused the patient significant discomfort, self-consciousness, or have made it difficult to find clothes that fit. Occasionally, unlike breast lift, breast reduction can be covered by insurance. To qualify, usually there needs to be significant documentation over several months of attempts to reduce discomfort non-surgically.

This is a relatively common misconception about a breast lift surgery. Except in extremely rare cases, the nipple remains attached to a leash of breast tissue at all times. This leash is swung up into a better position and the breast tissue is re-shaped around the leash and the skin then closed. This creates coning and projection of the breast that appears more youthful. By maintaining this leash, I am also maintaining the blood supply and nerve supply to the breast so that the sensation should be preserved.

The nipple gets its sensation from multiple nerves that swing around the body from the sides and the front. It is my goal to maintain the main nerve supply to the nipple when I perform a mastopexy. However, on rare occasions, the anatomy of the patient is different than the textbooks and the nipple sensation can diminish or even go away. This is a relatively rare complication, but needs to be addressed prior to surgery.

Like the nerves, the blood supply to the nipple is also from multiple areas on the chest. I maintain at least two of the main blood supplies to the nipple to reduce the risk of nipple loss after surgery. This is an extremely rare complication but can have an increased risk in patients who may be undergoing a very large breast reduction with lift or in patients who have had multiple breast lift surgeries. I have a lot of experience with revision breast lift and I take extra care to maintain the blood supply in these scenarios.

This is a good question that has a unsatisfying answer: it really depends. By definition, your tissues have proven that they are not great at holding themselves up and therefore there is some risk the weight of the breast may fall into the lower part of the breast and the upper pole will become flatter again. If the breast does fall again, it is possible to do revision breast lift, if necessary. Depending on the quality of your tissues, I do sometimes offer a special internal bra that helps to keep the breast lifted. I definitely recommend this internal bra for patients who are revision breast lift patients.

Yes, it absolutely is! Fewer people are smoking these days, but there are still a good number of people who are smoking or have replaced smoking with vaping. Vaping is still a problem because it frequently contains nicotine. Nicotine is a very toxic substance that greatly hurts the blood supply to your tissues, even if you are not having surgery. This is why people who smoke have an increased risk of wound healing problems and in the case of breast lifts, death of the skin and death of the nipple. Nicotine clamps down on the blood vessels feeding the healing tissue and reduces their ability to bring oxygen-rich blood to the surgical area. If you are an absolute smoker, I cannot operate on you. If you are able to stop for a month prior to surgery and at least two weeks after surgery, then I can consider operating on you. But for your health and wellness, please stop smoking!

Dr. Lahar takes the time to discuss all of these issues with you during your breast lift consultation. He can show you photos of his recent work, help you understand the changes that a breast lift will bring, and ensure all of your questions are answered before your surgical date arrives.

If you’d like to learn more about what a breast lift can do for you, call Lahar Plastic Surgery today to schedule a breast lift consultation, or spend a few moments on the online booking page.

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