Women commonly experience a loss of breast tissue and elasticity due to aging, weight loss, pregnancy, and breastfeeding. With any of these changes, the nipple and/or breast tissue and skin may drop. Many women with these issues desire lifting of their nipple and breast through the surgery known as a mastopexy, or breast lift. This procedure is sometimes combined with breast augmentation with an implant or fat, and this is called “augmentation mastopexy”.
Breast Augmentation on Its’ Own
If your breast engorged and then deflated for any of the above reasons and you would like to restore the size you were at your largest, then it may be possible to achieve your desired result through breast augmentation alone. This is a good category to be in, as this achieves correction with the fewest scars, and the least amount of operative time and recovery. In these situations, if nipple elevation is needed, sometimes a shaped implant can assist with this. We will discuss this in detail during your consultation.
Mastopexy on Its’ Own
If your nipple is too low and you have too much skin, but you are happy with the volume of your breasts, then mastopexy alone is probably indicated. In this case, we will use tissue repositioning and sutures to achieve the outcome you are looking for. As with every plastic surgical operation, the result will not just be the surgeon’s work, but the combined effort of you working with me. That’s because when your scars have healed, you will need to begin executing diligent scar care while the scars heal and mature.
Breast Augmentation and Mastopexy
The last category of patient is the one that many patients fall into: those who need both breast augmentation and mastopexy. Augmentation mastopexy is associated with a high rate of complications because the plastic surgeon is doing two things at the same time which essentially counteract each other. With a breast implant you are trying to expand the breast tissue and increase volume; with a mastopexy you are seeking to decrease the skin of the breast, reducing the available room for that volume. Because of this conflict, scars can look worse, nipples can enlarge, and the breast tissue can thin out over time.