Women with sagging breasts often do not know if a breast lift or a breast reduction will be the best procedure to meet their needs. Both procedures will lift the breasts to a more youthful position, reduce the size of the areola if necessary, and improve the shape of the breasts. The incisions for both procedures may be as small as one incision around the areola to three incisions that form an anchor shape (around the areola, from the areola to the breast crease, and along the breast crease). The main difference between the two procedures is that a breast reduction will lift the breasts and reduce their size, whereas a breast lift will solely lift the breasts to a more youthful position.
If your breasts are heavy and pendulous, causing back pain, skin irritation, or discomfort, a breast reduction can alleviate any stress your breasts are causing. When this is the case, this procedure is often covered by insurance. Last year, over 62,600 breast reduction surgeries were performed in the United States for reconstructive reasons alone. In addition, over 41,000 breast reduction surgeries were performed for aesthetic reasons, either to correct asymmetry or simply to improve breast appearance by reducing the size. So many women have experienced a significant improvement to their self-image and overall quality of life as a result of this procedure. Their breasts are smaller, more youthful-looking, and no longer cause pain and discomfort.
If your breasts are sagging either slightly or significantly but you have no desire to make them smaller or larger, a breast lift is the ideal procedure. A breast lift can correct asymmetry and make the breasts appear more youthful, but it will not increase or decrease the size. Most often, patients desire an increase in volume as well as lifted, more youthful-looking breasts, so they opt to combine a breast lift with breast augmentation.
Since more tissue and skin is removed with breast reduction surgery, recovery time will be longer than with a breast lift. Scars will be similar with both procedures depending on the degree of correction needed, and they will fade with time. Most surgeons recommend that patients are finished having children before either procedure as pregnancy will have an impact on the volume, shape, and skin elasticity of the breasts.
If you are interested in improving the appearance of your breasts with any of these procedures, please contact the Weston Cosmetic Surgery Center to schedule a consultation. Board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Charles Messa has the experience and expertise to guide you in the decision-making process. Please call (954) 659-7760 for an appointment, or fill out our online contact form at your convenience.