Do I Need An Implant With My Breast Lift?

Q: Dr. Eppley, I would like to know how much of a cup size is lost after having a breast lift. I am currently a 42 DDD and my breasts really hang down after a 75 lb weight loss. I want them lifted but I definitely don’t want to be any smaller than a D or DD cup. I wonder if having implants would make up for any loss of size after a lift. I really don’t want to get implants but I don’t want to be any smaller either. What are your recommendations?

A: In a breast lift procedure, only skin is removed to create the lift and breast reshaping effect. So a loss of cup size should not really occur since no breast tissue is removed. But there is often a perception that the breast can seem smaller because the conical reshaping of the breast results in less overall surface area. What most women expect from a breast lift is to have not only an uplifted breast but one with more upper pole fullness as well. While this most certainly occurs early after a breast lift, the settling of the breast after surgery will cause some loss of upper pole fullness. That is the role that a breast implant plays in many breast lift surgeries, to get and maintain upper pole fullness. Given the size of your existing breasts and the amount of lifting that will be required, it is understandable why you would be on the fence about the need for implants in your lift. When in doubt, do the breast lift without the implants first. Let the six month results determine whether implants would really be beneficial.

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis, Indiana