Cosmetic surgeons use a variety of incision techniques for breast lift surgery; the exact technique used will vary based on a patient’s existing breast tissue, the amount of excess skin to be removed, and her personal goals. Your cosmetic surgeon will recommend the type of breast lift that will achieve optimal results with the least conspicuous scarring possible.
Of course, the breast reduction vs. breast lift question is not really cut and dry because every woman is unique. You may be unsure of what volume you would like with the breasts in a more favorable position. Breasts may be different sizes (asymmetric). The position of the nipple may be out of proportion to the amount of breast sag. Breasts may be ‘deflated’ after pregnancy. You may have heard that breast implants are the only reliable way to lift breasts. These questions can easily be addressed at the time of your consult.
Breast lift surgery is typically performed as an outpatient procedure using general anesthesia or local anesthesia + intravenous sedation. The procedure takes about 1-2 hours to perform, depending on the extent of surgery. You will be able to go home shortly after surgery to continue your recovery. Your breasts will be bandaged or placed in a surgical bra.
The correction of capsular contracture might require an open capsulotomy (surgical release) of the collagen-fiber capsule, or the removal, and possible replacement, of the breast implant. Furthermore, in treating capsular contracture, the closed capsulotomy (disruption via external manipulation) once was a common maneuver for treating hard capsules, but now is a discouraged technique, because it can rupture the breast implant. Non-surgical treatments for collagen-fiber capsules include massage, external ultrasonic therapy, leukotriene pathway inhibitors such as zafirlukast (Accolate) or montelukast (Singulair), and pulsed electromagnetic field therapy (PEMFT).
It is certainly possible to lift a breast without changing the volume or removing any tissue, however, the breast will sometimes appear smaller after this procedure due to its position. It is also possible to reduce breast volume without lifting the tissue (usually via liposuction) but all reductions that are performed by making incisions will also include a lift.