One day you wake up and realize your breasts look like they belong on someone else’s body—someone like your elderly aunt. And as we say in the office, that’s not the look you were going for. When breasts lose volume and sag, it may seem like a lost cause, but it’s not. There’s hope.
Dr. Kinsley’s Advice
After kids, and with normal aging, breasts lose volume. Ordinarily, the volume can be replaced with implants alone. If the tissues drop or sag, however, an implant alone may not provide enough lift, and a breast lift or mastopexy is needed. A word of caution—over the years, I have seen many patients opt for a large(r) implant instead of a lift with a small implant to avoid the scars associated with a breast lift. What frequently results in these cases is a larger, saggy breast, like a grapefruit in a sock. My advice is to do what’s needed or do nothing at all.
In the past, some surgeons were reluctant to perform both of these procedures at the same time, opting to do a breast lift then come back a few months later and place implants. In my practice, I routinely perform these procedures together with proper patient selection.
During the Procedure
The surgery is done as an outpatient procedure under general anesthesia, and it usually takes less than two hours. While the patient is awake, I mark them while they are in the sitting position. Then, the surgery begins by placing the implant. To me, this is like pouring the foundation of a house. I place the implant, and then with the patient in a semi-sitting position, I tailor tack the skin around the implant to get the perfect shape and lift. Tailor tacking means stapling the skin without cutting it so that the incision lines can be fine-tuned. Once this is done, the skin is marked again, and then the breast lift is done. The few extra minutes it takes to “tailor” the breast make a huge difference in results, in my opinion.
After the Procedure
The patient wakes up in recovery in a bra after the procedure. As far as discomfort, a breast lift with implants is comparable to a breast augmentation. For the first two weeks, restrictions will be in place for high impact sports and activities, as well as heavy lifting.