If you research breast augmentation online, you’ll find that many women who are thinking about getting breast implants also wonder if they need a breast lift. While it’s understandable that breast augmentation patients would want to avoid combining the procedure with a lift, it’s necessary in certain cases to get the desired results.
Your plastic surgeon can help you determine whether you should get a breast lift along with breast augmentation. They’ll assess the condition of your breast tissue and any sagging to help you make an informed decision.
Understanding the goals of each procedure is important when discussing your concerns with a surgeon.
What’s the Difference Between Breast Augmentation and a Breast Lift?
Even though both procedures can enhance the appearance of the breasts, they address different issues. Breast augmentation involves inserting implants to increase breast size, while a breast lift removes excess skin and tightens the breast tissue to lift sagging breasts. If your breasts have started to sag and you get breast implants without a lift, the sagging will worsen because of the additional volume the implants add.
So, when does it make sense to combine a lift with breast implants? Here are some examples:
- Your breasts sag and appear deflated: Having children, losing weight, and simply getting older causes breasts to sag and lose volume. In these situations, a breast lift alone may not provide the desired results. Breast implants add fullness to the breasts, while a breast lift can lift and reshape them. Combining the procedures can produce a more youthful and voluptuous breast appearance.
- Your breasts are uneven: Most women have breasts that are slightly different sizes. In some cases, the differences are noticeable and a source of self-consciousness and dissatisfaction. Combining breast augmentation and a breast lift can balance asymmetrical breasts with attractive results.
- You have small breasts that sag: If you’ve always had smaller breasts and they’ve started to sag, you can benefit from a combination of breast augmentation and breast lift. The breast implants can increase breast size, while the lift can remove excess skin and tighten the tissue, giving the breasts a perkier and more youthful appearance.
- You’ve experienced age-related loss of volume: On the other hand, if you’ve had fuller breasts for most of your life, it can be disappointing to see them lose volume and sag as you get older. This can happen as your estrogen levels decrease. Combining implants with a breast lift addresses both issues, adding volume and elevating the breasts.
- You’re unhappy with the size and shape of your breasts: Some women simply desire a complete breast makeover, which involves increasing the size of the breasts and reshaping them with a breast lift.
Even though combining breast augmentation with a lift is fairly common, the procedure is more complex than a standalone augmentation and requires a bit more recovery time. Discussing your expectations and goals with your surgeon is important to determine if a combined procedure is appropriate.
Here are some things to know before a combined breast augmentation with lift surgery:
Scarring: This is probably the most common reason patients hesitate to undergo a lift with implants. The incisions for breast augmentation are made in locations where they’re barely noticeable. However, most breast lift procedures involve making an incision that extends from the lower edge of the areola to the base of the breast. Even though it fades over time, this incision is visible.
Our board-certified plastic surgeons perform a short-scar breast lift with implants for many women who want to combine the 2 procedures. Most patients consider scars a worthwhile tradeoff to enhance the shape and perkiness of their breasts.
Recovery time: At The Wall Center, our surgeons use rapid recovery protocols during surgery to minimize your time off after a breast augmentation with lift. Still, it’s best to expect a slightly longer healing period than after breast augmentation alone. You can read about the rapid recovery protocols used by our surgeons in a previous blog post.
Cost: Combining a breast lift with augmentation costs more than either procedure performed alone. The price varies from patient to patient, depending on the extent of the lift needed, the type of implants used, and other factors.
Future breastfeeding: Even though breast augmentation alone rarely affects a woman’s ability to breastfeed, a breast lift poses a bit more risk. If you plan to breastfeed in the future, it’s important to discuss this with your surgeon at your consultation.
Breast augmentation combined with a breast lift, when performed by an experienced, talented plastic surgeon, can create beautiful results that will last for years. If you’re looking for a breast enhancement specialist, request a consultation with one of our board-certified plastic surgeons at The Wall Center by using the online form. You can also call our Shreveport, LA, practice at (318) 795-0801 to schedule an appointment.