Q: Dr. Eppley, I want to lift my breasts but I am completely opposed to getting implants and that is not even a consideration. So please don’t even try to convince me to get them whatever their purported benefits may be to how the breast may look by using them. However, I am undecided as to whether it is worth the effort to undergo a breast lift. I would be happy if only my nipples were positioned higher as they sag down quite a bit now. I don’t have to have my breasts fuller after a lift and it wouldn’t bother me if they even end up a little smaller as a result of the lift. I just don’t know if the scarring and the cost would be worthwhile.
A: While implants are often used at the same time as a breast lift, they do not always have to be. If one is willing to accept a slightly smaller breast and no upper pole fullness afterwards, then one may do well with a breast lift as that is what it accomplish in most cases. The real question, and a hard one to answer for many women with sagging breasts, is whether the scars to lift them are a good trade-off. The best way to answer that important question is to look at numerous after surgery results of breast lifts and look carefully at the scars. Your reaction to those breast scars will answer the question of your acceptance of breast scars from a cosmetic reshaping operation.
Dr. Barry Eppley
Q: Dr. Eppley, I am unhappy with the shape of my breasts after breastfeeding two children and then losing 35lbs after the delivery of my last child. I do not like how loose and droopy my breasts are. I am happy with the size and I would like to avoid implants. I also would like to know how to get rid of the stretch marks on my breasts. Can you tell me if a breast lift without implants will be enough to remedy those issues? Also, after research I’m expecting to need an anchor lift, is that what you would recommend? I have attached a front and side picture of my breasts for you to see how droopy they are.
A: I think much of your assumption about the need for an anchor or full breast lift is correct. That is certainly what your pictures show with the nipple being positioned just below the inframammary fold in the side picture. While this will lift the nipple above the fold and will tighten the skin and lift the breast tissue higher up on the chest wall, a lift alone will not be able to create any persistent upper breast pole fullness. But if that is not a necessity then you could get by without an implant. The sole purpose for an implant in a breast lift for many patients is to create upper pole fullness that will persist after the breast lift/tissues relax and settle downward.
Dr. Barry Eppley