Mastopexy and the Crescent Lift
A mastopexy or breast lift surgery is usually most beneficial to women who have undergone the physical changes associated with pregnancy. After the delivery of the baby and breast feeding, the breasts will start to reduce in size and will often time appear deflated, saggy with a low positioned nipple.
Fortunately, droopy breasts aren’t something that women have to live with if they don’t want to. The best candidates for this procedure include:
- Those with saggy or ptotic breasts with noticeably less substance or firmness
- Those with pendulous or flatter, elongated breasts, usually with decreased volume;
- Those with nipples that have gone below the breast crease or inframammary crease; and
- Those with asymmetrical breasts.
With a mastopexy, doctors can restore your breasts’ former perkiness, firmness, and reshape it into a look that’s tailored to individual proportions. How exactly can surgeons do this, you ask? Put simply, surgeons remove excess skin, tighten and reposition the surrounding tissue to give your breasts better, more flattering silhouettes.
It’s a double-win situation for mom, should she choose to elect for it, as mastopexies are often times combined with breast augmentation to improve the breasts’ upper and lower pole fullness. Because breast size is inevitably changed during a breast lift, the use of implants can result in a more natural and aesthetically pleasing look with more projection and a rounder look.
In the execution of a lift, you and your doctor can discuss and choose a few different techniques. Incisions depend mainly on the patient’s current degree of ptosis (how low the nipple is positioned) and the new look they want to go for. It’s not a one-size-fits-all or all-for-one type of deal with incisions. In general, the lower your nipple is positioned, the more scars are involved to lift the nipple to the correct location
For this article, we will focus on the crescent lift which is utilized for the mildest of ptosis. Patients who qualify for this lift usually only have a small degree of ptosis meaning their nipple is only slightly off the position where they should be. For this particular incision, the areola or ring of pigmented skin surrounding a nipple serves as reference point for your surgeon. Picture a half-circle or, as the name itself suggests, a crescent-shaped piece of skin removed just above the areola. The surrounding skin is then reattached to the areola, now in a higher position. It is important to note that changes are only minimal. A ‘small lifting advancement,’ if you will, for those whose breasts have sagged only slightly. Generally, a crescent lift will only be able to lift a nipple at most 2 cm.
No matter whom your doctor is or how skilled he/she is, scars simply cannot be helped. Crescent cuts leave comparatively smaller and less noticeable scars than other cuts, but they’re used only when a slight advancement is needed or preferred. Nipples that are lower positioned will need more incisions in order to advance the nipple and removed the excess skin. This will be discussed in future articles.