Breast lift surgery (breast ptosis cure or mastopexy)

Breast surgery

Drooping breasts (breast ptosis) psychologically affect patients feeling as though they have lost their feminity.

Many factors can affect the shape of breasts, including the following: breast deformities, skin elasticity, breast weight, gravity, changes in body weight, pregnancies and breastfeeding.

Breast lift surgery aims to lift drooping breasts without modifying their volume. It enables to regain a more attractive and youthful shape.
This procedure can be achieved from the end of the pubertal period (end of the breast development).

Procedure steps

  • Dr. Petit will begin with questioning your medical history as well as your family history of breast cancer, your bra size, your weight and your size, your breast erogenous sensitivity (sensitive to sexual stimulation), your pregnancy and breast-feeding projects as well as your tobacco consumption.
  • He will listen to you in order to understand your motivations and your expectations relating to the shape and the volume of the breasts.
  • He will carry out a clinical examination of your breasts and will note the possible asymmetries that can persist after the surgery.
  • Dr. Petit will provide information on the scar positioning, treatment process and procedure limits, post-operative recoveries as well as main risks, so as to make an informed decision.

Procedure limits

  • Breast lift surgery does not act upon stretch marks sometimes located in the neckline area.
  • Breast lift surgery does not enable to increase the volume of breasts. A breast enlargement (by inserting implants or by lipofilling) combined with breast lift surgery will have to be considered if your breasts are drooping and emptied.
  • Breast lift surgery does not enable to achieve a « rounded » in the neckline area (« apple-shaped » breasts in profile).

Good candidates for a breast lift surgery

  • Having drooping breasts with downwardly facing areolae and nipples, as well as a breast volume which satisfy them.
  • With aesthetic and functional discomfort (difficulties in wearing a bra).
  • Accepting the scarring price.
  • And having understood the procedure limits.

General pre-operative instructions relating to aesthetic surgery

  • Smoking cessation 1 month before and after the procedure.
  • Discontinuation of medicines which increase bleeding 10 days before and after the procedure: aspirin, anti-inflammatory and anticoagulant medicines, vitamin E.

Specific pre-operative instructions relating to the breast lift surgery

  • Purchase of a support bra without any underwiring.
  • To do a mammography to return on the day of surgery.

Procedure stages

Pre-operative markings are performed by Dr. Petit before the operation.

The operation is achieved under general anesthesia, or under local anesthesia assisted with intravenous sedation (administration of a tranquilizer) in moderate ptosis.

The out-patient basis (hospital discharge that very evening) is the most frequent option.

Breast lift surgery consists in positioning higher and reducing the size of the areolae, in redraping the mammary gland (without removing any of it) and in removing the excess skin in the breast region.

Three scars in the shape of an anchor are necessary to reshape your breasts: a periareolar scar (around the areola), a vertical scar extending from the areola to the submammary fold, and a horizontal scar within the submammary fold.
The skin closure is performed with subcutaneous resorbable sutures.

A dressing modeling your breasts is performed at the end of the procedure.

What to expect after surgery

Breast lift surgery is a little or moderate painful procedure. Pains are well soothed by analgesics.

Ecchymosis (bruises) can subside within 2 weeks after the operation. An oedema (swelling) is constant and of variable duration, gradually subsiding within a few months.

Daily nursing care after your shower with a soft soap is necessary during 1 month.

The wearing of a support bra without any underwiring is recommended day and night during 1 month.

The resumption of daily activities is possible the day following the procedure.
The resumption of professional activities is possible 7 days following the procedure.

The resumption of sports activities can be done from 4 to 6 weeks following the operation.

Procedure risks

The complications of a breast lift surgery are weak.
Main risks are the following:

  • A haematoma: rare complication which may involve a secondary surgical revision to drain it.

In the post-operative month:

  • Healing problems.
  • Transitory troubles of skin sensitivity.
  • An infection, a necrosis of the areola and nipple: rare complications.

In the long term:

  • A decrease or a loss of erogenous sensitivity in 5% of cases.
  • A scar expansion
  • A pathological scarring (hypertrophic scars or keloids).

Long-term result

The final result of a breast lift surgery is obtained between 3 to 6 months after the procedure, when the post-operative oedema has disappeared. Your breasts will gradually regain their natural shape during this period.

The scars initially are inflammatory (red and swollen) the first months, then they will fade gradually without disappearing. The final aspect of your scars is not predictable and will be known at the end of the scarring maturation (between 1 and 2 years after the procedure).

Dr. Petit uses the best surgical technique to achieve a discreet scar. However, the random character of the skin healing process does not enable to foresee its quality given that the residual scar is unpredictable. It is possible to use a new laser technology in order to optimize your scar outcome for a less visible scar.

The result is stable and long-lasting except in case of significant changes in body weight or pregnancy. However, your new breasts will evolve like any uncorrected woman subject to the effects of gravity and ageing.

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