A breast lift with implants combines two cosmetic procedures: a breast lift to uplift sagging breasts and breast augmentation to increase their size, shape, and roundness. More and more patients are choosing to integrate these two procedures into one to create the most transformative enhancement of their breasts.
This article will explore the many positive outcomes of a breast lift with implants in more detail, giving you insights into how such a procedure can benefit you.
At the CREO Clinic in London, our double board-certified cosmetic surgeon, Dr. Omar Tillo, has extensive expertise in both breast lift and breast augmentation surgery and will work tirelessly to help you achieve your body goals.
Contact the CREO Clinic today to enjoy the benefits of a breast lift with implants.
The Rising Popularity of Augmentation-Mastopexy
In recent years it has become more and more common for breast augmentation and mastopexy to be combined so as to create comprehensive enhancements to the breasts while minimising downtime.
Combining the procedures has also become more popular as they offer more control and precision over the final shape and size of the breasts. Breast implants work to improve volume and shape, and a breast lift works to reduce sagging and improve your breasts’ perkiness. Sculpting the breast tissue using these two techniques is a highly effective way to achieve your desired breast shape.
What is Augmentation-Mastopexy?
Augmentation-mastopexy is the combination of both breast implants and a breast lift. A breast lift involves giving your breasts a lift where they may have begun to sag or droop – combining this with implants ensures you not only see an improvement both to the firmness and perkiness of the breasts but also their size and volume.
Benefits of combining breast lift with implants
There are many advantages to combining a breast lift procedure with breast implants. Here are a few examples:
Corrects sagging and loss of volume simultaneously
Combining procedures means that you can reap the benefits of a breast lift with the benefits of augmentation: reduced sagging, repositioning of the nipples, and an enlargement of the breasts. One procedure alone may not provide the full aesthetic improvement you hoped for.
Only one surgery
Instead of having two separate procedures at separate times, only one day of surgery will be necessary. This can not only be more cost-effective but also makes the procedure fit more easily into your calendar.
One recovery with a similar timeline
Undergoing a breast lift and breast augmentation at the same time does lengthen your downtime, but not drastically, so your recovery timeline will still likely be shorter than if you were to have two separate surgical procedures. As a result, you will be able to reduce the time you take off work.
Who Are Ideal Candidates for the Procedure?
Any adult with an interest in improving the size, shape, and volume of their breast tissue can be a good candidate for a breast lift with implants, but there are some key criteria the CREO Clinic looks for in an ideal candidate:
Be Relatively Healthy
It is important for augmentation-mastopexy patients to be in good physical and psychological health before deciding to undergo the surgery. As part of your initial consultation, Dr. Tillo will assess your medical history to ensure you are suitable for the procedure – this is an important step, as fit and healthy patients are less likely to experience complications.
Maintained a Stable Weight
Crucially, a consistent, stable weight is an indicator of good health and well-being, but people who typically maintain a stable weight will also see the benefits of a breast lift with implants more than those whose weight fluctuates. This is because putting on or losing weight after the surgery can alter the results of your surgery over time. The CREO Clinic requires augmentation-mastopexy patients to have a BMI of 30 or below (check your BMI using our BMI calculator).
Have Realistic Goals
Understanding the possibilities of your breast implant/lift surgery is vital – all patients should know what the lift and implant surgery can and cannot do, as this allows you to have realistic goals and expectations for your results.
Procedural Techniques and Variations
Breast Lift Techniques
A breast lift can be performed with various techniques depending on the severity of the sagging and lax skin. Dr. Tillo will use the most appropriate incision for your particular needs.
Periareolar (Donut) Lift
The periareolar lift is sometimes known as a ‘donut’ lift, as it involves a circular incision around the areola. This incision is used for patients looking to make the 2-3 cm lift of the nipple and is preferred by those looking to minimise scarring, as the circular scar is well disguised by the nipples’ natural colour.
The Crescent lift makes one ‘half-circle’ incision over the top half of the areola to create a 2cm lift of the nipple. The crescent incision is used mostly for minor sagging and also results in well-disguised, minimally visible scars.
Vertical or Lollipop Lift
To provide more lift than the crescent or donut incisions, a vertical or ‘lollipop’ incision can be used. This consists of two incisions – one around the areola (similar to the donut incision) and then another vertical incision downwards towards the breast fold. This technique leaves two scars that should fade and become less and less visible over time.
Inverted T or Anchor Lift
The most extensive technique for a breast lift is the inverted T or ‘anchor’ lift. This follows the same incision root as the lollipop lift, with an additional third incision across the breast fold. The transformative potential of an inverted T lift is much greater than less invasive techniques, but the scarring will be more significant. If you are unsure whether an anchor or lollipop lift would be better suited to your needs, you can read our dedicated blog on the subject.
Types of Breast Implants
Saline implants are a common form of breast implant that involves filling a silicone shell with saline solution to add volume to the breasts. While they are effective at adding volume to the breast tissue, saline implants can look and feel less natural compared to their silicone counterparts – this is why the CREO Clinic does not use saline implants for any of its patients, preferring to use the more modern silicone gel implants.
To ensure the best and most natural look and feel for your breast augmentation, silicone gel implants are likely to be the best option. These implants consist of a silicone shell and a silicone gel filling and can be extremely precise in terms of the size and shape they create in your new breasts. For the reasons set out in our saline vs silicone gel blog, the CREO Clinic plastic surgeons only use silicone breast implants.
What is Augmentation-Mastoplexy Procedure?
Single Stage Procedure
At the CREO Clinic, we perform a single-stage procedure for augmentation-mastopexy – which means your breast lift is performed during the same surgery as your breast augmentation.
In a single-stage procedure, a general anaesthetic is administered to ensure you are comfortable and pain-free, then Dr. Tillo creates an incision in the breast fold to position the silicone implant over your pectoral muscle. After this, depending on the type of breast lift you require, a section of the existing breast tissue is removed, and the resulting gap is closed using dissolvable sutures.
For patients who find their skin is extremely stretched or thin, a two-stage procedure may be necessary. First, a breast lift will be performed, then after 3-6 months, you will undergo another surgery for your augmentation.
Breast Lift (Mastopexy)
Your first surgery will be a breast lift, consisting of whichever incision Dr. Tillo deems most appropriate for your cosmetic needs. Firstly, anaesthetic is administered to ensure your surgery is pain-free, then an incision (or multiple incisions) is made in a specific area of your breast so a section of excess skin can be removed. The resulting gap is then closed back together using dissolvable sutures to provide the breasts with uplift.
Breast Implants (Augmentation)
Breast augmentation begins with an anaesthetist administering anaesthetic, ensuring you are comfortable and that the procedure is painless. An incision is then made in the breast fold of each breast, through which Dr. Tillo will insert and position a silicone implant over the pectoral muscle of each breast. Your incisions are then closed up with dissolvable sutures.
Nipple and Areola Repositioning
Repositioning and reshaping the nipples is a common complement to both a breast lift and breast augmentation – as such, Dr. Tillo can also change the shape or size of your nipples/areolas during a combined breast lift/augmentation surgery.
The goal of nipple and areola repositioning is to ensure that your nipples are in proportion with your new breasts, but it can also provide a perkier, more youthful aesthetic.
Recovery and Postoperative Care
A combined breast lift and augmentation require a similar recovery to either procedure if performed independently. Generally, you will need two weeks to get back to normal day-to-day activities such as work and approximately 4-6 weeks to return to physical activities involving the lower half. At the six-week mark, you should feel comfortable returning to your full exercise regime (including exercises that stress your upper body) without issue.
Risks and Complications
Common Risks and Potential for Complications
Some of the most common side effects of augmentation-mastopexy surgery are swelling, soreness and bruising, but these should dissipate in the first week or two of your recovery. Some far rarer risks include loss of nipple sensation, breast asymmetry, haematoma, capsular contraction, aesthetic issues, and implant rotation, loss, or rupture.
However, the likelihood of complications from a combined surgery are higher. Dr. Tillo explains:
“The risk of complications or the need for a revision surgery after combined breast lift/augmentation is approximately 30%, meaning one in three patients find themselves needing two procedures eventually. Complications and revision surgeries are less common after two-stage augmentation-mastopexy, and patients are also able to decide whether they need a second stage after seeing the results of the first.”
The risk of experiencing any complications is reduced significantly by choosing an experienced, highly qualified surgeon such as Dr. Tillo.
How to Mitigate Potential Complications
The most important way to mitigate any potential complications from your augmentation-mastopexy is to strictly follow the preparation and after-care advice of your surgeon.
In the run-up to your surgery, it is advisable to make the following preparations:
- Maintain a stable weight – Try to keep your BMI stable in the lead-up to your surgery, as this will minimise any complication risk. A dietitian may be able to help balance your diet to reduce weight fluctuation.
- Give up smoking – Avoid smoking cigarettes in the four weeks leading up to your surgery, as these can interfere with incision healing
- Cutdown alcohol consumption – Avoid drinking large quantities of alcohol in the two weeks before surgery – alcohol can also affect your body’s ability to heal
- Prepare your home – Ensure your home is as comfortable as possible for you to relax during your downtime. Also, ensure any pet or childcare responsibilities are taken care of for the initial stages
Breast Lift With Implants FAQs
How will Breast Lifts With Implants Affect Pregnancy?
There is nothing to prevent women who have undergone breast lift/augmentation surgery from having children. Neither procedure will affect pregnancy in any way. The breast lift element of the procedure may, however, affect some women’s ability to produce milk during the weaning stage, and breastfeeding may affect the results of your procedure – as such, it is best to wait until after your final pregnancy before having an augmentation-mastopexy.
Will the NHS Cover These Procedures?
As both a breast lift and breast augmentation are purely cosmetic procedures, the NHS is unlikely to cover them either individually or as a combined surgery.
What Financing is Available for a Breast Lift with Implants?
The CREO Clinic’s financing partner, Chrysalis Finance, can offer a range of helpful financing options to allow payments to be spread over multiple instalments.