Breast Lift (Mastopexy)
What is a Mastopexy?
Mastopexy is the term used to describe breast lift surgery. The surgery involves reduction of the breast skin, and reshaping of the breast tissue to lift the nipple and breast volume higher up the chest and tighten the breast skin.
Who is suitable for Mastopexy?
The most common reason women undergo Mastopexy is to correct the deflation and drooping of breasts that can occur following pregnancy and lactation.
During pregnancy the volume of breast tissue increases to allow breast-feeding, and as a result the skin of the breast is also significantly stretched. Once pregnancy and feeding is completed the breast tissue shrinks back down but the breast skin may not shrink enough, leading to sagging, under filled breasts. Breast lift surgery can correct this by reducing the excess breast skin, reshaping the breast tissue and lifting the breast back up to its correct position on the chest.
Some women who have had significant weight loss have a similar appearance to their breasts, where the loss of breast volume has not been matched by a shrinkage of breast skin. For these women Mastopexy can also be an effective method of lifting and reshaping the breast to recreate a firmer, more youthful and aesthetic breast shape.
To be suitable for surgery women must be in good health, close to optimum weight and not smoking.
What is involved in the surgery?
Mastopexy or breast lift surgery is undertaken under general anaesthetic in hospital. In some women it can be a day case surgery, others may require one overnight hospital stay. The recovery would usually necessitate at least 2 weeks off work and up to 2 weeks off driving.
Mastopexy surgery to remove excess breast skin and reshape the breast tissue leaves some visible scars on the breast, the extent and shape of which depends on the amount of lift required. Most women feel the scars settle well and are worth the benefits that the breast lift has provided them. The long- term appearance of the scars depends very much on a woman’s individual biology but if you are considering this surgery Dr O’Mahony can show you some examples of post operative results to help you visualize the likely scars.
Can I just have breast implants instead of a breast lift?
In some women the sagging or droopiness of the breast after pregnancy can be corrected by insertion of breast implants to refill the skin envelope. In many women however the skin stretch is more significant, and the nipple sits too low on the chest for breast implants to successfully recreate a youthful looking breast. In these women a Mastopexy is needed. If there is very little breast tissue volume, or if women wish to increase their breast size, Mastopexy with insertion of an implant is undertaken. In some cases the operations can be done at the same time, however in many cases the two procedures are separated to give a better overall result.
Will my Health Fund recognise this procedure?
In a small number of cases Breast Lift is considered a reconstructive procedure, rather than being entirely cosmetic and therefore Medicare and some Health Funds will cover some of the costs of surgery, although few will rebate the entire cost of surgery. Medicare requires photographs to be sent to them for prior approval before surgery and Dr O’Mahony can arrange this if your breast shape fulfills the Medicare criteria.
In most women Mastopexy is a cosmetic procedure and no rebates are available. Dr O’Mahony’s office can send you a detailed quote after your consultation if you wish to consider surgery.
If you would like more information or arrange a consultation with Dr. O’Mahony, please contact us for an appointment.