Post-surgery Care for Breast Lift Incisions and Scar Reduction
Breast lift (Mastopexy) surgery is a procedure designed to raise and reshape breasts affected by breast ptosis. It is a popular cosmetic procedure worldwide that can elevate and restore firmness to your breasts. As with any surgical procedure, a breast lift involves incisions and leaves scars. Understanding the nature of these incisions, the post-operative care required, and the ways to reduce and manage the resulting scars is a critical part of your plastic surgery experience. This knowledge empowers you to take control of your recovery and optimise your outcomes. The aim of this blog post is to provide you with comprehensive information about breast lift incisions, the post-surgery care required, and the most effective ways to reduce scars after mastopexy. Armed with this knowledge, you’ll be better prepared to navigate your journey post-breast lift surgery.
Melbourne Specialist Plastic Surgeon Dr Carmen Munteanu is highly trained and experienced in performing breast lift surgeries and other breast procedures. Dr Carmen takes the time to understand the patient’s goals, provides detailed information about the procedure, and answers any questions the patient might have.
Download Dr Carmen’s Guide to Arm Lift Surgery
Breast Lift Incisions
Breast lift incisions are the sites where Dr Carmen makes cuts to remove excess skin and reshape your breast tissue. The type and extent of the incisions depend on the degree of breast sagging, the size and shape of your breasts, and your desired outcomes. The three common types of incisions are: periareolar incision (around the areola), vertical incision (from the areola to the breast crease), and inframammary incision (along the breast crease).
It’s essential to remember that these incisions, while necessary for the procedure, do leave scars. With the appropriate post-surgery care and scar reduction strategies, you can minimise their visibility and enhance the aesthetic outcome of your surgery.
Post-Breast Lift Surgery Care
Your journey post-breast lift surgery starts the moment you wake up from anaesthesia. Your breasts will be bandaged or placed in a surgical bra. You may feel sore and experience swelling and bruising, but these are normal post-operative symptoms that subside with time.
Proper care of your breast lift incisions during the first few weeks is crucial to prevent complications, such as infections or wound dehiscence (separation of wound edges). This includes keeping the incisions clean and dry, avoiding strenuous activities, and wearing a supportive (post-operative) bra. Dr Carmen will provide detailed instructions on wound care, medications, and follow-up appointments.
Monitoring your incisions for signs of infection, such as redness, increased pain, or purulent discharge, is also vital. If you observe any unusual symptoms, don’t hesitate to contact your medical team.
Managing Scars after Breast Lift/Mastopexy
Dealing with scars after mastopexy is an integral part of your postoperative journey. At first, the scars may appear red and lumpy. But with time and proper care, they will fade and become less noticeable.
To reduce the visibility of your scars, it’s essential to protect them from the sun, as UV radiation can darken them. Also, avoid smoking and maintain a healthy diet, as these factors can negatively impact wound healing and scar maturation.
Remember, it’s normal to feel anxious about your scars. But it’s important to be patient and give your body time to heal. Over time, your scars will fade and your breasts will settle into their new shape.
Effective Methods to Reduce Scars after Breast Lift Surgery
While you cannot completely erase scars after breast lift surgery, different methods can help reduce their appearance. These include over-the-counter (OTC) topical treatments, such as silicone sheets and gels, which have been proven to improve the colour, texture, and thickness of scars.
Massaging your scars can also be beneficial. It helps break down scar tissue, improves circulation, and promotes healing. However, ensure you wait until your incisions have fully healed before starting any massage therapy.
Professional treatments, such as laser therapy, dermabrasion, and micro-needling, can also be effective in reducing scar visibility. These treatments should be considered only after discussing with Dr Carmen.
Mastopexy/Breast Lift with Implants: What to Know about the Scars
Breast lift with implants is performed when the patient wants an increase in their breast size and to correct the breast ptosis simultaneously. In this case, it’s important to know that combining mastopexy with implants can potentially complicate the healing process, as it involves more extensive incisions and a higher risk of complications. Therefore, it’s crucial to understand the implications of this combined procedure and discuss it thoroughly with Dr Carmen.
The extent and location of scarring from a mastopexy with implants will depend on the specific surgical techniques used. The choice of method often depends on the degree of ptosis, the patient’s anatomy, and personal goals. Some common techniques include the anchor lift, lollipop lift, and the doughnut lift. Each of these techniques requires different incision placements and therefore, will result in different scar patterns.
The anchor lift, which is often used for women with significant breast ptosis, involves an incision around the areola, vertically down from the areola to the breast crease, and then horizontally along the breast crease, resulting in an anchor-shaped scar.
The lollipop lift involves an incision around the areola and vertically down to the breast crease, creating a lollipop-shaped scar.
The doughnut lift, used for women with mild to moderate sagging, involves an incision just around the areola, resulting in a circular scar. Implants can be inserted through any of these incision types.
Tips for Post-Surgery Care for Breast Lift Incisions
Here are some tips to help navigate your post-surgery journey:
- Follow Dr Carmen’s instructions: Your Plastic Surgeon understands your individual case best, so adhere strictly to their advice regarding wound care, activity levels, and follow-up appointments
- Maintain a healthy lifestyle: Healthy eating and regular exercise can promote healing and enhance your overall recovery
- Be patient: Healing is a process, not an event. It takes time for your body to heal and adjust to its new shape
Professional Treatments for Scar Reduction after Breast Lift Surgery
If your scars increased visibility persists despite your best efforts, professional treatments can help. These include laser therapy, which can reduce redness and smooth out raised scars; steroidal injections, which can flatten hypertrophic or keloid scars; and surgical revision, which involves excising the scar and re-closing the wound.
Before opting for any of these treatments, discuss their benefits and risks with your Plastic Surgeon. While different treatments can be effective in your particular case, most of them also have downsides that you should be aware of. Keep in mind that multiple sessions might be needed to achieve the desired results.
Follow-up Care after Breast Lift Surgery
Regular follow-up care after breast lift surgery is vital to monitor your healing process and address any potential complications early. During these visits, Dr Carmen will assess the condition of your incisions, the position of your breasts, and the progress of your scars.
These appointments are also an opportunity to address any concerns or questions you may have. So, make sure to keep all your follow-up appointments and maintain open communication with Dr Carmen.
Undergoing breast lift surgery is a significant decision, and dealing with the resulting incisions and scars can be a challenging part of your journey. However, with the right information, appropriate post-surgery care, and effective scar reduction strategies, you can navigate this journey.
FAQs about Breast Lift Scars
Are there visible scars from a breast lift?
- Yes, there are visible scars following a breast lift procedure, also known as mastopexy. The extent and location of these scars depend on the specific type of lift performed. The traditional method involves an anchor-shaped incision around the areola, down the breast, and along the breast crease. Less invasive procedures, such as a doughnut or lollipop lift, create fewer and less noticeable scars. While these scars fade over time, they usually remain visible to some extent.
How long do breast lifts last?
- The longevity of a breast lift varies from patient to patient, but generally, the results last for many years. Factors such as age, genetics, overall health, weight fluctuations, pregnancy, and breastfeeding can affect how long the results last. Maintaining a stable weight and healthy lifestyle can also help extend the results. However, it’s important to understand that none of these procedures can halt the normal ageing process.
Can breast lift scars be removed?
- While scars from a breast lift cannot be entirely removed, their appearance can be significantly diminished with appropriate care and various treatments. Silicone sheets or gels, for instance, can help reduce the colour, size, and texture of the scars. Certain laser treatments and microneedling procedures may also prove effective. Always consult with your Plastic Surgeon to understand the best options for your specific situation.
When do scars look their worst after breast lift surgery?
- Scars typically look their worst 1-2 weeks after breast lift surgery, when they may be red, raised, and firm. Over the next several months, they flatten out and lighten in colour. Keep in mind that each person’s healing process is unique and it can take up to a year or more for scars to fully mature and fade to their lightest colour.
Do you lose size after a breast lift surgery?
- Breast lift surgery doesn’t typically result in a significant change in breast size, as its main aim is to raise and firm the breasts by removing excess skin and tightening the surrounding tissue. But since some skin is removed, some patients may notice a slight reduction in their breast size. If a breast reduction is performed in conjunction with the lift, the size will definitely decrease. For those looking to increase size, breast implants can be inserted during the same surgery.
Further Reading about Breast Lift Surgery with Dr Carmen
- Read Dr Carmen’s Blog about Recovery After Breast Lift Surgery – Tips, Timeline and Healing
- Read Dr Carmen’s Blog about Breast Lift FAQs – Questions About Breast Lift Surgery
- Read Dr Carmen’s Blog about Best Compression Garments for Plastic Surgery Patients
- Read Dr Carmen’s Blog about Understanding Breast Anatomy – Breast Cosmetic Surgery Terms and Concerns
- Read Dr Carmen’s Blog about Sagging or Drooping Breasts? – Solutions for Breast Ptosis
- Read Dr Carmen’s Blog about How Can I Reduce Swelling and Bruising After Breast Lift Surgery
- Read Dr Carmen’s Blog about What Causes Saggy Breasts