Mastopexy (breast lift)
What is it?
Mastopexy is lifting, tightening and reshaping the breasts while keeping them the same size in a bra.
Is Mr Callan experienced at this procedure?
Mr Callan has many years of experience at this procedure. He performs mastopexy regularly and keeps up to date with the latest techniques. As a fully trained plastic surgeon, Mr Callan performs this procedure to the highest standard available.
Can I see photographs?
You can see photographs of people who have had this procedure when you have your consultation. As Mr Callan performs this procedure frequently, we have a large number of photographs of women who will have had a problem similar to yours.
Who has mastopexy?
Usually women whose breasts have sagged after breastfeeding or after weight loss. Occasionally younger females have breasts which sag low because they have formed that way and need correction.
Am I suitable?
You need to be sensible and honest about your reasons for wanting mastopexy and happy with your informed decision. You should also be as healthy as possible. A time of personal crisis is no time to be making decisions about such surgery. If you have a family history of breast cancer, this will need to be discussed at your consultation.
What would stop me from having the surgery?
Smoking, being outside the BMI (body mass index) range of 18-28, under stress when making your decision, or having a medical condition that would make surgery unsafe.
How is it done?
Mr Callan performs all his surgery at St John of God Hospital in Geelong, a fully accredited hospital. An incision is made around the areola (coloured part around the nipple), and another vertical incision below that. Rarely, a horizontal incision is made in the fold under the breast. The excess skin is removed and the breast remoulded to an aesthetically pleasing shape.
Will I have scars?
The only incision lines are ones around the areola and one vertical incision line below that. Very rarely there will be a horizontal one in the fold under the breast but this is not usually visible when sitting up. The incision lines are always there but they usually improve to the extent that they are not a great concern for most women. As a rule the incision lines are inconspicuous.
What are the benefits?
What you get out of surgery is entirely a personal matter. If the appearance of your breasts currently distresses you, elevated and tighter breasts may make you feel better about your appearance in general. Back, neck and shoulder pain may be relieved in some women.
What are the risks?
All surgery carries some element of risk. You can minimise your risk by being as healthy as possible and as psychologically prepared as possible, by selecting an experienced and qualified surgeon, and by giving yourself a stress free time during which to recover. The particular risks and complications of this surgery will be discussed at your first consultation. The most common of these is that it takes a couple of months for the breasts to assume their final shape. A few women may lose some sensation in the breasts or nipples but most do not. Breastfeeding is possible after mastopexy but some women find it difficult as they may have insufficient milk. There are other risks common to all surgery and you will be made aware of these.
How long will I be in hospital for?
Mastopexy can be done as a day procedure but may involve an overnight stay depending how you are after the anaesthetic. Someone will need to take you home from hospital and should stay with you the first night. Mastopexy is not a particularly painful procedure but can be a little uncomfortable for a couple of days. You will be given medication if it is required to keep you comfortable.
How long will I need to recover?
This ranges from a few days to a few weeks depending on what you do. If your activities are sedentary then you may only need a few days, but if you do heavy work and lifting you may need up to three weeks. It's a good idea to take some time out from more strenuous activities so you don't prolong your recovery. The same guidelines apply to exercise, with mild to moderate exercise allowable early on and full aerobic activities after three weeks. You can shower within hours of surgery as dressings are minimal (tape only). You must not drive until you are fully recovered from both the anaesthetic and the discomfort of surgery. If in doubt, don't.
Will I wear a bra after surgery?
You will be given instructions on the purchase of a soft bra prior to surgery. This bra is important in the early postoperative period to help shape the breasts and keep discomfort to a minimum. After a couple of weeks you can wear any bra you want.
Will I need to be seen after surgery?
Yes. We will keep in close contact with you by telephone for the first few days and then will see you about four days after surgery, then at three weeks and three months. You are of course welcome to call or visit any time with any concerns.