What is a breast lift?

Breast lift surgery, also known as mastopexy, is a procedure that raises and firms the breasts. Excess skin is removed to tighten the surrounding tissue and to reshape and support the new breast contour. The internal breast tissue is usually reshaped as well.


The procedure


In most breast lift or breast reduction procedures, the nipples and areolas remain attached to the blood and nerve supply while they are repositioned. However, if breasts are extremely large, where the nipples are near the level of the waist, the nipples and areolas may have to be removed and repositioned at a higher level. This will result in the permanent loss of sensation in the nipple and areola, and the inability to breastfeed.

All breast lift and breast reduction procedures leave permanent scars. These will be red initially and take six months to one year to fade. They are placed so they will be as hidden as possible, even if low-cut clothing is worn. Sometimes the final scars may be unsatisfactory, and scar revision may be required. Some surgeons prefer that patients wear a supportive stocking or a continuous calf compressor during surgery to reduce the risk of a blood clot in a leg deep vein (DVT).

Surgical Techniques - the location of incisions will depend on the size and shape of your breasts, the amount of skin and tissue to be removed, your surgeons’ recommendations and your preferences. Your surgeon, may use a skin pen to mark your breasts immediately before surgery to map out the incision lines.

Three methods may be used to lift breasts or reduce breast size, as follows: Robbins method, Vertical method, or the Benelli method.


What will it do?


Breast lift surgery is designed to reshape and tighten the breast contour by removing excess skin. This gives the breasts a more firm and raised appearance. A breast lift can also reduce the size of the areola, which can become enlarged over time.

Is it right for me?


Breast lift surgery is a highly individualised procedure and may not be suitable for everyone. Always talk to your Specialist Plastic Surgeon before making a decision. Your Specialist Plastic Surgeon will assess your condition and general health, and plan the treatment that is best suited to you.

Before you decide on breast lift surgery, there are some important issues to keep in mind:

  • Breast lift surgery does not significantly change the size of your breasts or round out the upper part of your breast. If you want your breasts to look fuller or smaller, you might want to consider either breast augmentation or breast reduction surgery

  • Surgeons generally recommend waiting until breast development, child birth and breastfeeding have stopped before undertaking breast lift surgery

  • Although breasts of any size can be lifted, the results may not be as long-lasting in women with heavier breasts


A breast lift may be a good option for you if:


  • You are physically healthy

  • You have realistic expectations

  • Your breasts are fully developed

  • Your breasts are sagging and have lost their shape and firmness

  • Your breasts have a flatter, elongated shape or are pendulous

  • When unsupported, your nipples fall below the breast crease

  • Your nipples and areolas point downward

  • You have stretched skin and enlarged areolas

  • One breast is lower than the other


Remember that the shape and size of your breasts before surgery will influence the surgical procedure and the outcome.


Expectations of surgery



Will I have scarring?


Scars are an inevitable part of any invasive surgery. Your Specialist Plastic Surgeon will endeavour to minimise scarring and to keep your scars as inconspicuous as possible by locating the incisions in easily hidden sites. That way, scars will be along natural skin lines and creases. Scars may fade with time and become barely noticeable. If you are prone to scarring, you should advise your surgeon.

Will I need revisional surgery?


In most circumstances, breast lift surgery does not need to be repeated. However, as with all surgical procedures, revisional surgery may be necessary to correct minor irregularities.

What are the costs of this procedure?


Cost is always a consideration in elective surgery. Prices for individual procedures can vary widely between Specialist Plastic Surgeons. Some factors that may influence the cost include the surgeon’s experience, the type of procedure used and the geographic location of the office.


Costs associated with the procedure may include:


  • Surgeon’s fee

  • Hospital or surgical facility costs

  • Anaesthesia fees

  • Prescriptions for medication

  • Post-surgery garments

  • Medical tests


We welcome any questions you may have regarding fees.

Breast lift procedure video

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