The medical term for breast sag is "ptosis"
Breast tissue tends to sag with increasing age- why?
- More common after child birth and breast feeding
- Hormonal influences
- The internal breast ligaments (Cooper's ligaments) stretch
- The skin stretches
What does a mastopexy involve?
- Reshaping and lifting the breasts to produce a fuller, firmer bust
- Reduction in the areola size if needed
Depending on the severity of breast sag, different techniques are used:
- Implants- only suitable for filling out minor sag
- breast lift of 1-2cm achieved with full projecting implants
- won't prevent recurrent sag
- Donut lift: scar around areola. Ok for minor sag only
- Key hole lift: Combines the donut incision with removal of wedge of skin from between nipple and fold under breast
- Wise pattern lift: For grade 2-3 sag. Anchor shaped scar (similar to the breast reduction)
- Wise pattern mastopexy combined with Bra Lift
- This is a simple technique that was described by a personal colleague
- It involves a small additional procedure to create additional internal lift
- it may reduce recurrent ptosis
Understanding Breast Mastopexy
How is breast sag measured?
- It is measured by the relation of the nipple position to the fold under your breast (the infra-mammary fold)
How is it graded?
There are three grades of increasing severity:
- Grade 1: nipple level with the crease
Grade 2: nipple < 3cm below crease
Grade 3: nipple >3cm below crease
Is it Safe?
- Breast Mastopexy takes between 1-3hrs depending on which method is used
- Complications are not common but as for breast reduction may include:
- Minor delays in healing
- With the key -hole lift it can take a while for the vertical scar to flatten
- Very rare: <1 in 1000: the nipple blood supply can be compromised causing tissue loss
Can it be combined with breast implants?
- Yes, but there are additional risk if this is done at the time of the mastopexy
- It is preferable to wait 12-months
- If you are a smoker it is very important to completely abstain until properly healed.