Breast Lift

What Is a Breast Lift?

A variety of factors can lead to a sagging and drooping appearance to the breasts: the natural processes of aging and gravity; recent pregnancy and/or breastfeeding; significant weight loss; and genetic disposition. Breast lift surgery, medically referred to as Mastopexy, can reverse these effects and give the breasts a more youthful contour. Plastic surgeon Daniel C. Mills, MD is certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery and makes cosmetic breast enhancement a special focus of his practice. With breast lift surgery, Dr. Mills can help you attain your goals with breasts that appear younger, firmer, and “perky.”

Please contact Dr. Mills to schedule a consultation for breast lift surgery at our Laguna Beach, Orange County, California practice.

What Are the Benefits of a Breast Lift?


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Breasts that take on a sagging appearance are extraordinarily common, and can have an impact on a woman’s self-esteem. The good news is, breast lift surgery can be very effective at addressing changes in the shape and contour of the breasts, providing a number of benefits, including:

  • Reduction in the appearance of sagging and drooping
  • Breasts that are in a tighter, firmer position
  • Breast that appear firm and more youthful

Although a breast lift concentrates on the elimination of excess skin for a firmer appearance to the breasts, it will not give your breasts more volume or increase their size. However, a breast lift with breast implants can help you achieve this goal, giving the breasts a perky appearance while enhancing their size to meet your needs.

Dr. Mills will meet with you in an initial consultation to talk about all aspects of breast lift surgery. At this meeting, you are encouraged to ask any and all questions you may have. Dr. Mills will be happy to speak with you and help you determine if breast lift (mastopexy) surgery is the best option for you. This procedure can also be included as part of a Mommy Makeover for comprehensive body rejuvenation.

Am I a Candidate for Breast Lift Surgery?

The most ideal candidates for breast lift surgery typically include those who:

  • Are experiencing moderate to severe levels of sagginess/droopiness (breast ptosis) and excess skin affecting the breasts
    • Ptosis of the breasts is measured by varying degrees, depending on how low the breasts and/or nipples are sagging. Grade 1 ptosis indicates a more moderate level of breast while Grade 2 and 3 ptosis represent a more severe level. Dr. Mills will establish the degree of ptosis you are experiencing during the initial consultation.
  • Desire to renew the contours and shape of their breasts for firmer, more youthful results
  • Desire to reduce the size of the areolas and nipples
  • Desire to achieve a more centralized location for the nipples
  • Have realistic expectations for results
  • Are in reasonably good general health

It is typically recommended that patients wait until they have completed their families before undergoing a breast lift as pregnancy and breastfeeding can have a negative effect on results. Dr. Mills will evaluate your candidacy for this procedure during your initial consultation and talk with you about the most ideal treatment for your specific goals.

What Does the Breast Lift Procedure Involve?

There are a number of different breast lift techniques that Dr. Mills can perform. He will discuss all of them with you before surgery and determine which technique will be best for your individual needs. Typically, the procedure will involve an incision made in the areola (the area surrounding the nipple). The incision will follow down to the breast crease. Dr. Mills will likely reposition the nipples to a higher location and remove excess skin that may be causing the breasts to sag. The remaining skin will be tightened to provide a smoother appearance and “lift” to the breasts.

Breast lift surgery can be performed as an outpatient under general anesthesia. The entire procedure typically takes less than two hours to complete.

Soft Tissue Reinforcement with the GalaFLEX® Scaffold

Traditionally, patients with weakened breast tissue and/or those who require additional soft tissue support have been susceptible to a quicker reoccurrence of breast sagging following mastopexy due to their tissue’s inability to withstand the effects of various elements that contribute to breast drooping. To help combat this concern and prevent accelerated breast re-sagging in certain individuals, Dr. Mills offers an innovative technique called the GalaFLEX® scaffold that can be positioned at the time of surgery.

Fabricated from a bioresorbable polymer, the GalaFLEX® scaffold is a lattice-like, biocompatible device designed not only to immediately strengthen tissue areas that require additional reinforcement, but also to regenerate new, more durable tissues via the natural development of collagen and healthy blood vessels. Over the span of about 18-24 months, the GalaFLEX® scaffold should safely dissolve by way of hydrolysis, eventually leaving behind only carbon, water, and the newly regenerated tissue.

For most patients in need of soft tissue reinforcement, Dr. Mills has found that the GalaFLEX® scaffold can improve tissue strength by three to five times, ultimately helping to prevent the reoccurrence of breast drooping while prolonging the mastopexy outcome.

What Can I Expect During Breast Lift Recovery?

Some degree of swelling and bruising can be expected after breast lift surgery; however, this can be alleviated with medication. Normal daily routines can often be resumed after about one week. Dr. Mills advises breast lift surgery patients to avoid strenuous activities and upper-body workouts for several weeks after surgery. He also advises patients to come to our practice for follow-up appointments to make sure the recovery process and results are satisfactory, and to perform monthly self-breast examinations.

How Much Does Breast Lift Surgery Cost?

Since breast lift surgery is fully customized to each patient’s needs, the cost of the procedure varies from one individual case to another. The American Society of Plastic Surgeons has estimated the average cost of breast lift surgery to be in the $4600 range; however, this is usually representative of the surgeon’s fee, and does not take into account factors such as the anesthesiologist’s fee, the operating facility fee, the complexity of the treatment, and other issues. Once you meet with Dr. Mills for your initial consultation and a customized treatment plan is created, a member of our staff will produce a total cost estimate of the procedure and go over your options. Our practice accepts a variety of payment methods, and we work with reputable healthcare financing companies – including CareCredit®, ALPHAEON™ CREDIT, and Prosper® HealthCare – that can provide qualified applicants with convenient payment plans to help them pay for the procedure over time.

Will My Breast Lift Scars Be Visible?

There will be some visible scarring after breast lift surgery; however, the extent of scarring is dependent upon the specific surgical technique that is utilized. Fortunately, Dr. Mills is highly experienced with breast lift procedures and can employ advanced approaches designed to minimize signs of scars. In addition, residual scarring should fade with time, and there are treatments available that can reduce their appearance following surgery. In most cases, the overall results of breast lift surgery are so satisfactory that patients find any post-operative scarring to be an insignificant factor when compared to the benefits of the procedure.

Will I Need a Breast Lift with Implants?

The answer to this question will ultimately depend on your unique needs and goals. If the breasts are primarily affected by excess skin and sagginess rather than volume loss, and if you do not feel the need to enhance breast volume, a breast lift alone may be the best option. If you would like to restore or add volume to the breasts in addition to giving them a firmer, more youthful appearance, a combination breast lift with implants (augmentation mastopexy) procedure may be more ideal. This procedure can be performed in a single operation for some patients; however, Dr. Mills often prefers to stage it over two treatment sessions to allow for reduced signs of scarring and improved healing. When Dr. Mills meets with you for the initial consultation, he will talk with you about your goals, perform a comprehensive examination, and help you determine whether a breast lift or a breast lift with implants procedure will be more in line with your overall expectations.

Breast lift surgery is one of the most popular breast enhancement procedures and can be extremely effective at reducing sagginess in the breasts for a more attractive and youthful appearance. For more information on breast lift surgery, please contact our practice.

If you would like to learn more about breast enhancement, body contouring, facial rejuvenation, and the many other treatments available from Dr. Mills, please visit our main website at www.danmillsmd.com.

*Individual Results May Vary

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