Breasts are often considered an innate part of femininity. However, sagging breasts are a natural consequence of aging. Sagging can be further accentuated by childbirth and breast feeding. If you are concerned by your sagging, drooping breasts then breast lift surgery might be an option for you.
Also known as Mastopexy, breast lift surgery aims to lift and reposition the breasts back to their original, youthful position on the chest. Mastopexy corrects unsightly breast sagging by removing excess breast tissue, skin and fat. Breast lift surgery is also seen as one of the least invasive breast surgery options. However, this doesn’t mean you can be complacent when choosing the right surgeon for your procedure.
Australia hosts some of the best breast plastic surgeons in the world. Surgeons like Dr Robert Drielsma are renowned for innovative minimal scar methods, like the Lollipop technique. The Lollipop incision helps reduce the level of scarring and the aesthetic appearance of the breasts. So what should you know before your breast surgery operation?
Finding a Plastic Surgeon
Firstly, you need to pick the right surgeon. This is one of the most important decisions you will make and one that is often difficult for those new to plastic surgery. When looking for a surgeon to perform your breast lift, look for two important certifications. These are the Australian Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) certification and the Fellow of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons (FRACS). Breast surgery requires a high level of skill and expertise. Surgeons that meet these certifications have completed a number of extremely important educational requirements. These include:
- A medical degree
- A minimum of 4 years residency at a reputable public teaching hospital
- A minimum of a further 4 years in accredited Plastic Surgery registrar training with the Royal Australian College of Surgeons in a teaching hospital.
When deciding on your plastic surgeon be sure to check their breast lift before and after photos, referrals and reviews. If the surgeon you’re considering has few referrals, few – or negative – reviews and few, if any, before and after photos, it is best to consider someone else. Avoid surgeons who are vague or uninterested in your surgical goals. Don’t let high social media profiles, glossy advertising or high Google/internet rankings influence your decision. Many are artificially created, and bear no relationship to the qualification, training or experience of the surgeon.
After you have chosen your surgeon you will attend a consultation. During your consultations you will discuss with your surgeon your goals, expectations, risks, and recovery. The consultation will also involve a physical examination to assess your breasts, take body measurements and to investigate whether you are healthy enough to undergo surgery. You will also discuss if you need further surgical procedures, such as nipple placement correction or breast augmentation, to successfully perform your lift.
The Surgical Process
It is important to disclose your medical history and medications to your surgeons. Some medications and medical conditions can make plastic surgery dangerous. If you are taking medications, your plastic surgeon may ask you to stop taking them, or make adjustments, prior to surgery. It is best to reduce alcohol consumption and stop smoking some weeks before surgery.
You require a general anaesthetic for this procedure. Your plastic surgeon will remove excess breast tissue and skin as required for your lift.
Because Mastopexy requires the removal of skin and tissue, you should expect to feel some pain, swelling and tenderness after surgery and during your recovery. You will wear a surgical bra after your surgery to give support and help control swelling. Most women are pleasantly surprised how little pain and discomfort is associated with breast lift surgery.
It is important during your post-operative period that you avoid activities that cause chest tension. Depending on your procedures and your body’s ability to recover from surgery, you should be back to driving within 2 weeks. You can return to normal activities between 6-8 weeks. However it can take up to 18 months for your breasts to settle into their final position and for scars to fully soften and fade. It is also important, during your post-operative period, to get help from friends and family to ensure you don’t cause unnecessary stress and tension to your chest.