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Breast Lift Surgery


Premier Newport Beach plastic surgeon Dr. Richard H. Lee helps countless women lift their sagging breasts to a higher, more youthful position on the chest.

Over time, the breasts can start to droop, due to breastfeeding, massive weight loss, hereditary factors or simply the aging process. In addition, the nipples may start to point toward the ground instead of straight ahead, and the areolas (the darkly pigmented skin encircling the nipples) may become stretched out.

Fortunately, undergoing breast lift surgery can correct the appearance of sagging breasts, downward-pointing nipples and oversized areolas, giving patients back the perkier breast profile they used to have.

Dr. Lee may also suggest that certain patients undergo breast augmentation with saline or silicone implants as part of their breast lift surgery to restore fullness to breasts that have lost an ample amount of volume and appear flattened. The procedure is also often performed with breast reduction surgery.

What Breast Lift Entails

Mastopexy, or breast lift surgery, is performed on an outpatient basis, under general anesthesia. To start breast lift surgery, Dr. Lee makes the necessary incision(s). He then removes excess skin from the breast area. The Orange County breast surgeon tightens and reshapes the breast tissue, moving the newly shaped breast mound to a higher position on the chest wall. He may also reduce the size of the areola if needed by excising some of the skin around the outer circumference of the areola. Dr. Lee relocates the nipple to a more elevated, central position on the breast, keeping the nipple attached to the underlying tissue to help preserve nipple sensation. Finally, he closes the incision(s) with sutures, and dresses the breasts with bandages and an ACE wrap.

Incision Options

There are three main types of incisions used in breast lift surgery: the crescent incision, the periareolar incision and the inverted-T incision.

Breast Lift Figure

During consultation, Dr. Lee evaluates the patient’s breast anatomy and discusses her aesthetic objectives for surgery. Depending on the patient’s unique needs and desires, the Newport Beach breast surgeon recommends an appropriate treatment plan, including which type of incision(s) will be used in the breast lift procedure. He may advise the use of one incision pattern or multiple incision patterns, based on the patient’s distinct needs.

The crescent incision is used for patients with mild sagging of the breast. The incision is placed along the darkly pigmented border of the areola, extending from the 9 o’clock position to the 3 o’clock position. This allows for minimal scarring.

Breast lift surgery with a periareolar incision, which is also known as “donut mastopexy” and “Benelli breast lift,” is used for patients with moderate sagging of the breast. With the periareolar incision pattern, Dr. Lee creates an incision around the areola. Then, some of the surrounding skin is removed, in a circular pattern. The periareolar breast lift results in tighter, perkier, more youthful-looking breasts. This incision pattern offers minimal scarring, around the dark border of the areola. However, a singular periareolar incision may not be an appropriate option for patients with more complex anatomical needs and aesthetic desires.

The inverted-T incision is used for moderate to severe sagging of the breasts. With this approach, skin is removed from the bottom portion of the breasts, to tighten the skin envelope around the remaining breast tissue and / or an implant. The areola is lifted to a higher position on the breast, and the remaining tissue is tucked into a higher position, resulting in a perkier, more youthful appearance of the breasts. The resulting scar includes: an incision around the areola; an incision that goes straight down the front of the breast, from the areola to the inframammary breast fold; and a horizontal incision that extends along the fold itself.

Although every type of surgery requires incisions that typically cause scarring at the incision site, patients can minimize the appearance of scars by properly caring for them. This includes keeping the incision sites out of the sun for a year. With proper care, scars should fade over time so that they become the color of the surrounding skin, ultimately rendering them nearly imperceptible.

Breast Lift Recovery

Schedule Your Breast Lift Consultation Today

As an experience breast surgeon, Dr. Lee has performed many breast lift procedures and has helped many patients enhance their appearance and self-confidence. If you have been considering breast lift surgery and would like to learn more about this procedure, please contact Dr. Lee today at 949-548-9312 to schedule a consultation.