Breast lift works to restore youthful contours

Classification of the sagging breast and getting a breast lift

Breast Lift Surgery

The medical term, Mastopexy is known as a Breast lift surgery, and it can correct the appearances of drooping and/or sagging breast. There are many reasons a women’s breast loses shape such as growing older, pregnancy and weight loss. Breast sagging’s technical term is ptosis, in which a breast lift procedure is a great option to restore firm and youthful-looking breasts. The objective of this article is to provide insight into the severity of droopy breast and surgical procedures to correct it.

How do you know you have breast ptosis?

To understand Ptosis, it’s classified into three grades of severity. To gain insight of the amount of sagging in your breasts, get a standard ruler, about 1-2 inches wide. Stand in front of a mirror and remove your shirt and bra. Then place the ruler under your breasts so that the top part of the ruler pushes up against the inframammary fold, which is where your breasts meet your chest. The ruler may not be even, but it’s important it touches the fold of both breasts.

If your nipple, not the colored skin around the nipple (known as areola) is above the top of the ruler—congratulations, you are not considered to have ptosis, however, you may have what is known as pseudoptosis if the lower part of your breast hangs down too far.

  • Grade 1 (Mild ptosis) is determined If your nipple is just at the top of the ruler.
  • Grade 2 (Moderate ptosis) is concluded if your nipple is between the top and the bottom of the ruler.
  • Grade 3 (Serious ptosis) is decided if your nipple is below the bottom of the ruler.

The ruler method is an approximation and Dr. Chen Lee may describe the sagging of your breasts differently.

Breast Lift Surgical Techniques

Dr. Chen Lee will recommend the type of breast lift procedure through the degree of ptosis and the structure of your breast.

Crescent Breast Lift

A common method to correct a mild (grade I) ptosis is through a crescent breast lift known as a crescent lift or nipple lift. In this breast lift procedure, a crescent of skin above your areola is removed from above the nipple, allowing the breast to be reshaped and the nipple moved up.

Benelli Breast Lift

The Benelli breast lift has many terms such as doughnut mastopexy, circumareolar breast lift, and apex lift. The Benelli procedure is considered to be less invasive than other breast lift procedures. The procedure is exercised through a doughnut-shaped piece of tissue from around the areola is excised with the areola then reattached to the breast in an elevated position. This surgical procedure is recommended if you have a mild to moderate ptosis (grade I or II), which Dr. Chen Lee can aid with the process and determine the best options.

Vertical Mastopexy Breast Lift

Vertical Mastopexy Breast Lift has a variety of names like lollipop breast lift, LeJour lift, and modified Benelli. Those with moderate (grade II) will gain the extra lift than the Benelli procedure. With this technique, a doughnut-shaped piece of tissue is excised that’s similar to the traditional Benelli breast lift.  Additionally, a vertical incision from under the areola to the breast crease is added to provide a superior lift to the breast. The vertical mastopexy provides more lift than the Benelli procedure. However, it’s less than the full mastopexy (discussed below).

Full Mastopexy Breast Lift

Women who suffer a severe grade of ptosis can be treated with full mastopexy. The full mastopexy breast lift has alternative terms such as anchor lift or inverted-T. This procedure can correct severe grade III ptosis through an anchor lift and allows for the maximum amount of lifting. This mastopexy breast lift method has an anchor-shaped incision that starts at the base of the areola and travels to the bottom of the breast, where it meets the ribcage. The sagging breast skin is tightened by excising the tissue from above and around the nipple, down to the inframammary fold, and along the fold where the breast meets the rib cage. Finally, your nipple will be repositioned to appear more youthful.

To reduce the need for multiple operations, breast augmentation is performed in conjunction with breast lift surgery to obtain fuller, firmer, and perkier breasts.

Why you should consider a breast lift or mastopexy

Scars from a Breast Lift

Depending on the location of the incision is placed, it will determine the breast lift scar at either or below the nipple. The scar can be easily hidden by bathing suits, bras, and even low-cut tops. However, some women consider the scarring from a breast lift to be a serious drawback to the procedure. The vertical mastopexy procedure uses a keyhole incision and a looking of a “lollipop” scar. The full mastopexy incision follows an “anchor” shaped scar.

Are you a candidate for a Breast Lift surgery?

Occasionally, a breast may sag without the descent of the nipple and the condition is known as pseudoptosis. Dr. Chen Lee’s experience has led to favor a breast augmentation to treat pseudoptosis. Nevertheless, true ptosis will require a breast lift procedure. A breast lift may be performed by itself or in conjunction with breast augmentation. To truly determine whether you need a breast lift and/or breast augmentation, it can only be through a medical examination. Dr. Chen Lee will take specific measurements to determine where the nipple and areola are placed relative to the breast crease (inframammary fold). The measurements will be used to determine if fullness can be restored with breast implants alone or if a breast lift to help restore a youthful look.

Next Steps…

To learn more about a procedure or book a consultation

Dr. Chen Lee, Montreal Plastic Surgeon

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