Breast Lift – Frequently Asked Questions

Learn about the most common breast lift questions answered by our Lexington, KY plastic surgeon, Dr. Henry Wells.


1. Breast lift vs. breast augmentation: How to tell which is needed?

If the nipple is at or below the fold at the bottom of the breast, a lift is usually needed. If the nipple is above the fold an implant will usually be enough.

2. Can breast lift with implants provide symmetrical breasts?

Breast implants with a lift is an excellent choice to improve breast symmetry. Breast implants alone only change the volume of asymmetrical breasts, so to make them look symmetrical they also may need the nipple lifted and the skin reduced.

3. What kind of breast lift leaves minimal scars?

The scars of all types of breast lifts are usually very good. Each type of lift is chosen because it gives the best result for a particular problem. We always try to achieve the best result with the smallest incisions possible. The circumareolar mastopexy can lift the nipple with a circular scar around the areola. This lift is limited and can make the breast appear flat if too much skin is removed. The next step up is a vertical mastopexy and the most skin can be removed with the inverted T mastopexy. The different incisions are not interchangeable and the appropriate procedure is recommended after examining the patient

4. Can breast lift and breast augmentation procedures be performed on the same surgery?

I frequently do these procedures at the same time and they are often combined with a tummy tuck for a “mommy makeover”, for less stress for the patient and only one recovery period.

5. Is it possible to breastfeed after breast lift surgery?

It is possible but a few patients are unable to do so.

6. Should I wait until after pregnancy to get a breast lift?

Most breast lifts are done on women who have had children and nursed them. However, we also do breast lifts for weight loss, tubular breasts, and sagging for other reasons. If you have a breast lift before pregnancy, it is possible that your breasts will sag again after you have and nurse your children.

7. What questions should I ask my doctor before a breast lift?

  • Explain your concerns and ask what procedure he recommends and why.
  • What is the recovery time and what limitations will you have during that time?
  • What are the risks and how often do they need revision?
  • Ask how many of these procedures has he done and ask to see pictures of his actual patients.
  • Is he a board certified plastic surgeon?

8. What is the recovery time from a breast lift surgery?

After a week, most patients can resume normal activities with restrictions. We limit lifting and strenuous exercise for 3 weeks. Many patients return to work after 1-2 weeks. With more extensive procedures patients may be off work from 2-3 weeks

9. What is the difference between a crescent breast lift and a vertical lift?

A crescent procedure is a lift with the incision along the upper edge of the areola. I don’t do it because the scars are often conspicuous and it doesn’t provide much lift. For minor lifts I do the circular incision. If I need to remove more skin, I remove a vertical wedge making it a vertical mastopexy.

10. Can I combine breast lift and areola reduction in one surgery?

With most lifts we usually reduce the size of the areola.

11. Will a breast lift without implants make breasts look smaller or larger?

They usually look smaller.

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