Breast Lift Hawaii
A breast lift is also known as a mastopexy. The goals of a mastopexy are to elevate the position of the nipple and to tighten the loose skin of the breast. This will give the breast a more youthful and “perky” look. Breasts display ptosis (become “droopy”) due to a variety of factors to include: pregnancy, aging, gravity, poor tissue strength and genetics. These factors are usually still in effect after a breast lift and it is important to know that the breasts may become “droopy” again even after surgery. It is important to wear a good supportive bra after a breast lift to help maintain the results of your surgery.
Degrees of Ptosis (“Droopiness”)
Ideally the nipple is centered over the breast mound, the shape of the breast has natural contours and the breast is in proportion to the rest of the body. There are different degrees of ptosis and a grading system has been devised to help determine how much ptosis is present which in turn can help determine which type of lift is most appropriate for each patient.
- Grade I Ptosis
The nipple rests at or above the level of the infra-mammary fold (where the breast meets the chest wall at the bottom of the breast)
- Grade II Ptosis
The nipple rests below the level of the infra-mammary fold but still points forward.
- Grade III Ptosis
The nipple rests below the level of the infra-mammary fold and points downward.
The nipple rests at or above the level of the infra-mammary fold but the bulk of the breast tissue rests below the infra-mammary fold.
Types of breast lifts
- Crescent Lift
A crescent lift is for patients that have a very minor amount of droopiness or that have minor asymmetry in the position of the nipples. An incision is made on the upper edge of the areola and a crescent of skin above the areola is removed. The edge of the areola is sutured to the new skin edge above the areola. This can achieve a small amount of lift, usually 1-2 cm elevation of the nipple position.
- Circumareolar Lift (Donut Lift)
A circumareolar lift can be used for patients that have slightly more droopiness in their breasts. An incision is made around the entire areola. An oval of skin is removed from around the areola with most of the skin removal from above the nipple position. The nipple is elevated to the top of the oval and the outer ring of skin is closed with a purse string suture which draws the oval of skin around the nipple. This will tighten up some of the loose skin of the breast. The diameter of the areola can be made smaller with this procedure. This type of lift can usually achieve 3-4cm of lift. Some of the potential problems with this lift are: flattening of the nipple-areola complex, pleating of the skin around the areola (this resolves with time) and potential widening of the scars.
- Circumvertical Lift (Lollipop Lift)
A circumvertical lift allows more lift and shaping of the breast. The nipple is elevated to the desired position on the breast and the loose skin in the bottom half of the breast is tightened. The scars from this type of lift will be around the edge of the areola and down the center of the breast from the bottom edge of the areola to the infra-mammary fold. The diameter of the areola can be made smaller with this procedure as well. This type of lift can usually achieve 5-7cm of lift. One of the negative factors with this lift is the additional scar on the bottom part of the breast; however, these scars usually heal very nicely over time. One of the positive factors of this lift is that it allows more precise changes in the overall shape of the breast.
- Inverted “T” Lift (Anchor Lift)
The anchor lift is reserved for patients that have more extensive droopiness in the breasts with a very low nipple position and excessive loose skin. The scars from this type of lift will be around the edge of the areola, down the center of the inferior breast and extending along the infra-mammary fold (anchor pattern). The diameter of the areola can be made smaller with this procedure as well. This type of lift can achieve 8+ cm of lift. The downside of this type of lift is the additional scars, the upside is the ability to re-shape and lift even the most droopy breast.