Ptosis, or sagging, of the breasts is an extremely common occurence. It can be the result of stretching from pregnancy, breastfeeding, or weight changes, or it can simply be caused by natural decreases in collagen and elastin due to aging. In any case, a breast lift is a surgical solution that can lift the breasts, providing a return to a younger-looking body. Your consultation is an opportunity to discuss your concerns and what you would like to achieve from a breast lift procedure and the professional examination will determine pertinent information, such your skin elasticity and the amount of remaining breast tissue. This consultation will help to decide the type of lift that will best meet your goals.
The periareolar technique provides the least scarring of any of the common breast lift methods. It uses an incision around the areola and can be done either completely around the areola, called the “donut lift”, or just around the top half, known as the “crescent lift”. Both types of incisions are used to lift the areola and nipple to improve the appearance of the breast without significantly lifting the breast itself. The crescent lift is only useful for women with small breasts and very minor ptosis, but the donut lift is capable of lifting the areola 2-4 centimeters, making it useful for more moderate sagging.
The vertical technique is the most common method and uses a full periareolar incision as well as one vertical incision that runs from the areola to the crease below the breast. The incision around the areola will be used to raise the nipple up to 7 centimeters, while the vertical incision allows access to remove excess skin and reposition breast tissue. Since the vertical technique allows repositioning of the tissue itself, it is useful in many more situations than the periareolar technique and can be used on most breast sizes with moderate sagging.
Finally, the Wise pattern uses the same incisions as the vertical technique with the addition of another incision in the crease below the breast. This allows for removal of the maximum amount of loose skin from the bottom and sides of the breast, and it allows full access to reshape the breast tissue. This method is necessary to get good results for very large breasts or for those with a large amount of sagging.
A comprehensive consultation with Dr. Schwartz can help guide you to the best surgical plan to achieve your goals.