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Breast Procedures

We offer a variety of plastic surgery procedures for the breasts and a selection of the most common procedures is listed below.

Breast Augmentation

A woman’s breasts are one of her most visible and feminine features.  Women born with small or asymmetric breasts, or whose breasts have decreased due to pregnancy and nursing, may desire breast implants to restore their body to its natural state or to increase their sense of femininity.  Breast augmentation is the placement of an implant into a woman’s breasts to make them appear larger or more symmetrical.

Reasons for Considering Breast Augmentation

  • Enhance body shape if breasts are too small
  • Equalize a difference in breast size to achieve breast symmetry
  • Increase breast volume after pregnancy and nursing

The Procedure
To enlarge the breast, a small incision is made and a breast implant inserted into the breast area.   There are several possible locations for the small incision.

  • the lower portion of the breast
  • the armpit
  • the areola (the darker skin surrounding the nipple)
  • in the belly button

Each incision point has pros and cons that will be discussed during the initial consultation.

Once the incision is made, the breast tissue is raised to create an open pocket under the breast or beneath the chest wall muscle.  Inserting an implant behind each breast can increase a woman's breast size by one or more bra cup sizes.  Implants contain a saline solution similar to saltwater, or a silicone gel.  In some circumstances an inflatable implant may be used; the level of inflation can then be adjusted to attain breast symmetry and balance.

  • Anesthesia:  General (performed in a hospital setting) or sedation (performed in our surgery center)
  • Length of surgery:  1 to 2 hours
  • Length of stay:  Outpatient (home the same day)

Recovery Process

  • Back to work: 3 to 7 days
  • Exercise:  May be resumed in 2 weeks
  • Discomfort:  Mild to moderate (anticipate 2 to 5 days of prescription pain medication)
  • Swelling:  Improves over 14 days
  • Bruising:  Rare
  • Bandages:  Removed in 1 to 7 days and replaced with a specialized surgical bra to be worn for several weeks
  • Stitches:  Absorbable (no stitches to remove)
  • Final result: Will be seen after the scars have matured (about 6 months).

Breast Lift

Every woman experiences sagging breasts due to gravity and the loss of skin elasticity over time.  A breast lift is a surgery that elevates the breast.  It doesn’t make breasts larger or smaller, rather reshapes the tissue that is already there.  In some cases, a breast lift can be combined with breast implants to lift and increase the size of the breasts.

Reasons for Considering a Breast Lift

  • Elevate the breasts due to sagging caused by aging and gravity
  • Firm the breasts if they have lost substance due to pregnancy and nursing
  • Re-align nipples/areolas that point down or to the side
  • Revive natural suppleness after weight loss

The Procedure
The most common breast lift procedure involves an anchor-like incision along the underside of the breast.  The incision goes around the area where skin will be removed, thus defining how the nipple will be relocated.  When the excess skin has been removed, the nipple and areola are moved into a higher position; the skin surrounding the areola is then brought down and together to reshape the breast.

Some patients, especially those with relatively small breasts and minimal sagging, may be candidates for modified procedures requiring less extensive incisions.  One such procedure is the "doughnut (or concentric) mastopexy" in which circular incisions are made around the areola and a doughnut-shaped area of skin is removed.  Recent innovations in breast lift techniques include minimal incision techniques and nipple sensation preserving procedures.

If the breast lift patient is also having an implant inserted, the implant will be placed in a pocket directly under the breast tissue or under the muscle of the chest wall.

  • Anesthesia:  General or sedation
  • Length of surgery:  1½ to 3 hours
  • Length of stay:  Outpatient (home the same day)

Recovery Process

  • Back to work:  3 to 7 days
  • Exercise:  May be resumed in 2 weeks
  • Discomfort:  Mild to moderate (anticipate 2 to 5 days of prescription pain medication)
  • Swelling:  Improves over 14 days
  • Bruising: Rare
  • Bandages:  Removed in 1 to 7 days and replaced with a specialized surgical bra to be worn for several weeks
  • Stitches:  Absorbable (no stitches to remove)
  • Final result:  Won’t be seen until after the scars have matured (about 6 months).