A breast lift, or mastopexy, is done to make the breasts more “perky”. Ptosis is the term used to describe droopiness of the breast, and a mastopexy reverses this process. There are three common types of mastopexy incisions:
- Peri-areolar: this type of incision extends only around the areola. It may even be limited to just the upper portion of the areola if only a small crescent of skin needs to be removed (below, left).
- Lollipop: A lollipop incision will correct a greater amount of ptosis than a peri-areolar incision. This type of incision starts around the nipple, then extends down the front of the breast (below, center).
- Anchor-style incision: identical to the incision used in breast reduction, an anchor-style incision is essentially a lollipop incision with a horizontal incision in the crease below the breast. This will correct even very severe ptosis (below, right).
Photo credit: www.plasticsurgery.org
A small amount of breast tissue may be removed during a mastopexy to help reshape the breast mound, but this does not generally result in a visibly smaller breast.
Recovery after mastopexy is very similar to recovery after a breast reduction. Most of my patients take prescription pain medicine for the first 2 or 3 days, then transition over to ibuprofen or Tylenol. I also recommend no lifting >15lbs and no vigorous exercise during the first four weeks to allow your incisions to heal. The majority of my patients return to work within a few days unless their job requires intense physical activity.