Breast uplift (Mastopexy)
What is a breast uplift procedure?
A breast uplift procedure (Mastoplexy) can help women of all
ages overcome the concern and embarrassment of drooping pendulous
breasts. It involves the surgical tailoring and tightening of
breast skin under general anaesthetic. Patients undergoing this
procedure usually stay in hospital just one night to recover. The
objective of surgery is to produce a pert, firm, more youthful
breast shape, that is in proportion to the rest of a woman's
What kind of women request this procedure?
- Women of all ages who are unhappy with the general shape of
- Women who have been affected by the effects of gravity
following ageing, pregnancy or weight increase or loss
- Women who suffer with uneven (asymmetrical) breasts
- Women who are limited by the way their pendulous breasts
interfere with their confidence to choose certain items
of fashionable clothing
- Women who feel that their self esteem, social confidence or
relationships are affected by concerns about their breast
What are the results link?
This particular procedure can provide dramatic results, freeing
women from the considerable physical and emotional difficulties
that drooping breasts can cause. In some instances where
significant weight loss or pregnancy has occurred, this procedure
can also be performed in conjunction with breast implant surgery.
Combining breast uplift surgery with implant surgery will boost
both the size and shape of the breast.
This advanced corrective procedure is reasonably lengthy and
complex and needs to be performed by a Consultant Plastic Surgeon
who is fully qualified and experienced to skilfully perform this
type of breast surgery. However, even the highest standards of
mastopexy surgery will result in some visible scarring on the
How is a mastopexy performed?
This procedure involves the rearrangement of soft tissue,
repositioning of the nipple and tightening of the surrounding
breast skin. This procedure can take an average of around 2
hours to perform under a general anaesthetic.
Occasionally, breast augmentation (enlargement) can be
incorporated into this procedure to also provide a fuller breast in
addition to the mastopexy procedure.
Techniques for breast uplift vary between surgeons and according
to the individual needs. However, the most common incision
method are shaped in an 'mid-line or anchor-like'
apperance, leaving a scar which extends around the darker tissue
surrounding the nipple (aureola) and extending down the midline of
the lower segment of the breast and then following the natural
crease line beneath the breast.
The areola (dark tissue around the nipple) may be reduced in
size as a result of this procedure. Another popular technique
involves an S-shaped incision, leaving a scar which extends around
the aureola and across the lower outside aspect of the breast,
which finishes in the natural crease line beneath the breast.
How will you feel after surgery?
The mastopexy operation is obviously a relatively major
procedure, but the operated area is often quite numb following
surgery. Typically patients therefore express that they experience
a surprising lack of post operative pain. However, analgesic
tablets (pain killers) are provided for any discomfort and bruising
that may be experienced in early recovery.
The return of nipple sensitivity following surgery is entirely
variable from patient to patient. The sensation in the nipple may
be preserved, but can be temporarily reduced or increased whilst
the scars heal. A proportion of women will lose some or all feeling
in one or both of their nipples. Breast feeding may or may not be
possible if a future pregnancy were to occur.
In the early days following discharge, patients are strongly
advised to stay at home, and to avoid any level of activity
that would put undue strain on the new surgical wounds such as
driving, playing sports, and excessive lifting, pushing and
Whilst surgical scars are going through their early healing
stage, patients are advised to wear a supportive bra with no under
wire. Good support of the breast area following the mastopexy
surgery is considered important, as it can enhance wound healing,
as well as reduce post-operative swelling and breast
Patients will be advised to take a specific amount of recovery
time away from work. This advice will be dependent on the type of
work individuals perform, but it is usual to take between one to
two weeks away from work and to refrain from any strenuous exercise
for at least six weeks following surgery.
Are there any risks involved in breast uplift surgery?
All surgery involves an element of risk from developing
complications. However, cosmetic surgery is usually undertaken
voluntarily and only when a patient is in good health. Therefore,
the probability of experiencing complications with this kind of
surgery are substantially lower than those who undergo surgery for
ill health reasons.
Risks such as bleeding, infection, delayed healing, asymmetry,
alteration in sensitivity, and scarring will all be
discussed openly at consultation, as well as our scrupulous
efforts to manage and minimise these risks to their lowest possible
Smoking may adversely affect wound healing and heavy smokers may
be precluded from having this type of surgery as a result.
The appearance of surgical scars, which generally fade
progressively after surgery, are a highly individual matter.
Usually, scarring matures and fades to a cosmetically acceptable
level within 6–12 months following surgery. Occasionally, patients
can develop red, unsightly, firm scars, which do not fade; this
condition is known as hypertrophic or keloid scarring, which may
require further corrective treatment, although the results cannot
The importance of a thorough pre-operative consultation with the
Consultant Surgeon who will perform your operation cannot be over
stressed. You need time to consider all the benefits and risks of
breast uplift surgery, as well as the opportunity to reflect and
consider all the information your surgeon offers you before you
make a decision regarding potential surgery.
With Vive, each consultation is tailored to an individual’s
needs, but the process will always involve a thorough evaluation of
your present and past medical history and a physical examination of
the problem area. Your surgeon will take time to listen to your
concerns regarding your present breast shape and will take care to
ensure that you have a thorough understanding of what can be done
to help, the procedure itself, the varying recovery stages and a
clear explanation of the risks involved. You are positively
encouraged to ask any questions that you may have and to look at
photographs of others who have had the same type of surgery you are
If you would find it helpful, our advisory team may be able to
arrange for you to speak with a previous patient who is willing to
discuss their experience with you over the telephone.