breast

Plastic surgery of the breast encompasses several broad categories of procedures such as breast augmentation, lift, lift with augmentation, reduction as well as reconstruction after mastectomy for breast cancer.  Within each category there exist several techniques applied by a plastic surgeon.  Each technique variant chosen by a plastic surgeon can be used to meet a particular need by a patient.  Aside from technical nuance, there are also several options left to the patient's preference; location of the access incision in breast augmentation, gel or saline, under or over the muscle, vertical breast lift or Wise pattern lift.  That said, as a patient considering breast surgery the best advice I can offer is the following: take your time, meet with your plastic surgeon to ask questions and learn.  Once you have invested the time learning your options, you will develop a sense of confidence regarding the procedure.

 
 
 
 

breast augmentation

Cassie describes her experience deciding on the right breast implant for her. The smooth rounds Natrelle Gel implant, a highly cohesive gel implant, was chosen based on her goals of a moderately projecting implant with low chance of rippling over time. The smooth round cohesive gel line of implants is part of the Allergan composite of breast implants.

 
 
 
 Markings for a breast lift procedure by Dr. James Rosing using the SPAIR technique.

Markings for a breast lift procedure by Dr. James Rosing using the SPAIR technique.

Breast lift 

A breast lift, also known as mastopexy, raises the breasts by removing excess skin and tightening the surrounding tissue to reshape and support the new breast contour. New statistics from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons show the popularity of breast lifts have grown 70% since 2000, outpacing breast implants 2-to-1. Sometimes the areola becomes enlarged over time, and a breast lift will reduce this as well.

A woman’s breasts often change over time, losing their youthful shape and firmness. These changes and loss of skin elasticity can result from pregnancy, breastfeeding, weight fluctuations, aging, gravity, heredity. 
 

 
 
 
 Intraoperative image after completing a breast lift and augmentation with smooth round gel implants

Intraoperative image after completing a breast lift and augmentation with smooth round gel implants

Breast lift with implants (augmentation mammoplasty)

A breast lift with implants is the combination of both breast augmentation and breast lift procedures also called augmentation mastopexy.  Patients who desire both a removal of lax or excess skin of the breast as well as an increase in size of the breast are good candidates for this procedure.  The procedure is offered in those patients with breast ptosis or breast sagging, where the nipple area of the breast is either at or below the inframammary fold (the lower part of the breast where it inserts on the chest wall) as a primary indication.  The secondary indication is based on the patient's subjective desire to have both the breast raised as well as enlarged.