What is a Breast Lift?

Aging, childbearing, breast-feeding, and weight loss can sometimes cause the breasts to sag, and lose their shape. Our board-certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Wesley Schooler, MD, can help you restore the desired contour and size—sometimes without the need for breast implants—through a cosmetic procedure known as a mastopexy, or breast lift surgery. A breast lift is designed to reshape and raise the breasts to a more youthful location on the chest wall in order to improve projection, minimize sagging, and enhance the breast shape. During surgery, loose skin contributing to the appearance of breast sagging is removed while the surrounding breast tissue is tightened to create a rejuvenated breast. For patients who would also like to add size and volume to the bustline, Dr. Schooler can place breast implants in conjunction with the breast lift procedure for more extensive improvement.

What Can a Breast Lift Achieve?

A breast lift is a popular treatment option for patients whose breasts have lost firmness or shape as a result of pregnancy, nursing, weight fluctuation, the natural aging process, or genetic factors. Those with breast skin laxity and resultant sagging of the breast tissue can typically benefit from a breast lift. In general, mastopexy can be used to:

  • Rejuvenate the breast shape and enhance the contours of the breasts
  • Elevate the breasts to a more central location
  • Improve breast projection and symmetry
  • Reposition and/or resize the nipples and areolas

Dr. Schooler will help you determine whether a breast lift is well-suited to address your concerns during a consultation. He typically advises patients who plan on having children or breastfeeding in the future to postpone their breast lift, as the effects of pregnancy and nursing can often affect the cosmetic outcome achieved by surgery.

How is Breast Lift Surgery Performed?

It is important for patients to know and understand all aspects of breast lift procedures. At your initial consultation, Dr. Schooler will explain the benefits and risks of the surgery, as well as what you can expect before, during, and after surgery. Our plastic surgeon will also answer any questions or concerns you may have about a breast lift, and together, you will decide if the procedure can ultimately fulfill your aesthetic enhancement goals.

During a breast lift, Dr. Schooler will remove excess skin that is causing the appearance of breast drooping and sagging. The remaining skin is tightened and the nipples are moved to a higher location, giving the entire breasts a more rejuvenated appearance overall. The entire procedure usually takes two hours or less to complete under general anesthesia and can be performed as an outpatient.

What is Breast Lift Recovery Like?

After surgery, the breasts will likely feel swollen or tender for a few days. A compression bandage or surgical bra will be worn temporarily to help support your breasts and facilitate the healing process. While bruising and swelling is normal, any discomfort can typically be managed well with oral pain medications. Most patients can return to their daily routines within one to two weeks, although strenuous activity should be avoided for about four weeks. Dr. Schooler will provide you with detailed post-operative instructions regarding incision care, activity restrictions, and more at the time of surgery to maximize your healing process.

How Much Does a Breast Lift Cost?

According to 2017 statistics taken by the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS), the national average price of a breast lift is approximately $4,895, not including fees from anesthesia, the surgical facility, post-operative care, or other related expenses. The price of surgery will also vary depending on your geographic location and the expertise of your plastic surgeon. Other factors unique to your procedure that may influence your cost estimate include:

  • The breast lift technique utilized
  • Whether implants were placed at the time of surgery
  • The extent of concerns addressed
  • The overall complexity of the surgery

For patients who would rather pay for their treatment over time rather than in a lump sum, our practice works with both CareCredit® and Alphaeon™ Credit. These plastic surgery financing options offer qualified applicants a range of payment plans with low monthly installments to make the cost of a breast lift more affordable. Once approved, patients can receive their desired enhancement while adhering to any budgetary concerns. To speak to a member of our team about the cost of a breast lift, please reach out to our practice today.

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If you would like to learn more about a breast lift, or if you are ready to schedule a consultation with Dr. Wesley Schooler, please contact Santa Barbara Plastic Surgery Center today.