Breast Lifts Soar in Popularity Among Women

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The popularity of breast lift surgeries among women is on the rise, with statistics from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons indicating a 70% increase since 2000. This surge in demand for breast lifts has outpaced the growth rate of breast implant surgeries. Plastic surgeons, such as Dr. Constance M. Chen from New York is seeing more women opting for mastopexy, the medical term for a breast lift procedure. 

A breast lift, or mastopexy, involves the removal of excess skin to tighten the breast envelope. This process also repositions the breast tissue and the nipple-areolar complex higher on the chest wall. Dr. Chen points out that all women’s breasts undergo natural changes over time, primarily because of gravity and aging. Factors like breastfeeding, menopause, and the natural loss of skin elasticity can contribute to breast sagging. 

According to Fox News, Breastfeeding is a significant contributor to breast sagging, but even women who haven’t breastfed can experience breast drooping over time. Menopause is another factor, as glandular breast tissue is replaced by fatty tissue, which is softer and less firm. While exercises can help firm the underlying chest muscles, they won’t impact breast tissue directly.

Therefore, for women unhappy with sagging breasts, surgery is often the only effective solution. Dr. Chen emphasizes that mastopexy typically doesn’t change the size of the breasts, but it can make them appear fuller and rounder. If a woman desires larger or smaller breasts, additional procedures like augmentation or reduction can be performed in conjunction with a breast lift. 

Dr. Brian Reagan, a plastic surgeon in San Diego, California, notes that many patients opt for breast lifts after childbirth, particularly a few months post-breastfeeding. The breasts continue to change for several months after breastfeeding, making it advisable to wait at least three months before considering a breast lift. 

  • Crescent Lift: This minimally invasive procedure involves removing a crescent-shaped piece of skin at the top of the nipple-areolar complex to adjust the nipple’s position. It’s suitable for women with perky breasts who want a slight adjustment. It can also be combined with breast augmentation for those seeking larger breasts. 
  • Benelli Lift: This technique is used to provide a small lift for slightly drooping breasts. A doughnut-shaped incision is made around the nipple-areolar complex, and the skin is tightened. However, this type of breast lift can flatten the breast, so an implant may be necessary to improve projection. 
  • Lollipop Lift: Also known as a short-scar vertical mastopexy, this procedure repositions the breast tissue higher on the chest wall. It involves limited incisions around the nipple-areolar complex and vertically down to the breast fold, resembling a lollipop shape. This technique removes more breast skin and significantly changes breast shape and lift. 
  • Anchor Lift: The traditional Wise-pattern mastopexy, or anchor lift, includes horizontal scarring along the crease beneath the breast, in addition to the scars from the vertical mastopexy. It allows for reshaping and repositioning of breast tissue. While effective, it is often used by older surgeons who may not have been trained in vertical mastopexy. 

It’s important to note that every plastic surgery procedure carries some degree of risk, and breast lifts are no exception. Risks associated with breast lifts include decreased nipple sensation, potential tissue loss (including the nipple), and the possibility of poor scarring. Individuals who smoke are at higher risk of delayed healing and potential wound complications, making it advisable to quit smoking at least six to eight weeks before undergoing breast lift surgery. 

The rising popularity of breast lifts among women is attributed to their effectiveness in addressing breast sagging, which can result from factors like aging, gravity, breastfeeding, and menopause. Various mastopexy techniques are available to meet different degrees of lift and aesthetic preferences. However, like all surgeries, breast lifts come with risks that should be carefully considered before undergoing the procedure. 

News Reference  

Rudy M. “Ask a doc: ‘What should I know before getting a breast lift? https://www.foxnews.com/health/ask-doc-what-should-know-getting-breast-lift 

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