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What is a Breast Lift?

A mastopexy, or breast lift, is a procedure that lifts the breast. It is definitely not a “one size fits all” procedure. The degree of breast lift is dependent upon the patient’s unique anatomy, the severity of drooping, the quality of the skin, and the patient’s desired result.

A breast lift in San Diego can dramatically change and improve the shape and appearance of the breast and can also be performed in conjunction with breast augmentation. Of all the breast procedures, a breast lift requires the most in skill and artistic ability from the surgeon. Our breast surgeons at Ranch & Coast Plastic Surgery have performed numerous amounts of breast lifts in San Diego and are considered masters at breast procedures.

Before & After

Why Choose Ranch & Coast in San Diego For a Breast Lift?

Paul Chasan, M.D., F.A.C.S and Dr. Cameron Francis are master surgeons and are world-renowned for their sophisticated, effective procedures in the field of cosmetic and reconstructive surgery. Our doctors specialize in aesthetic surgical procedures for the face, body, and breast in their state-of-the-art medical spa and surgery center, Ranch & Coast Plastic Surgery, located in the heart of Del Mar Village. The doctors, as well as our friendly, professional, and highly trained nursing and office staff provide the highest quality of skill, sophistication, and attention to detail—all while ensuring patient care and satisfaction are the number one priority.

Dr. Chasan measuring patient's chest

What Are My Breast Lift Incision Options?

When it comes to a breast lift, there are four incision options, each of which caters to a unique set of circumstances. These options are:

  • Circumareolar or “donut,” in which the scar is limited to just around the areola
  • Vertical or “lollipop,” in which the scar goes around the areola and vertically down the breast to the inframammary crease
  • “Short Scar” lollipop plus a short horizontal scar in the breast crease—this is the most common after Lollipop lifting
  • “Anchor” scar (rarely used today), which continues horizontally along the majority of the inframammary crease

Breast lift incision diagram

A breast lift can dramatically change and improve the shape and appearance of the breast and can also be performed in conjunction with breast augmentation. Of all the breast procedures, a breast lift requires the most in skill and artistic ability from the surgeon.

How Does a Breast Lift Work?

A breast lift can take as short as an hour with the circumareolar technique, and up to three hours for a more comprehensive technique. A common misconception is that the nipple-areolar complex (NAC) is removed from the breast and put on the back table. The NAC is rarely detached from the breast at any time.

What Will My Breast Lift Recovery Be Like?

The recovery from breast lift surgery is similar to a breast augmentation in which there is mild to moderate discomfort for two to three days. If a breast lift is performed in conjunction with a breast augmentation, there is no additional discomfort or prolongation of the recovery process.

Who is a Candidate for a Breast Lift in San Diego?

Breast lifts are best suited for mature women who are in good physical and mental health and who have realistic expectations for what the procedure can accomplish for them. You are very likely a candidate for the procedure if you:

  • Have breasts that naturally sit at two different heights, or:
  • Would like to correct or enhance the appearance of flat, elongated, or pendulous breasts.
  • Do not smoke, or can cease doing so for an extended period pre and post-surgery.
  • Feel you would attain an increase in personal confidence and/or sexual confidence from the procedure.
  • Have nipples and areolas that point downward, and that when unsupported, fall below the breast crease (inframammary fold).
Attractive woman in white top and large breasts.

Breast Lift Scars—What Will My Scar Look Like?

One of the most common objections to breast lift surgery is the resultant scarring. Dr. Most scars look their worst at two to four months and begin to improve dramatically after that. He further states that one of the biggest disparities he sees is the patient’s preconceived ideas of a “scar” and the ultimate outcome of a mature, well-healed incision that is minimally detectable. Dr. Paul Chasan comments, “if patients only saw pictures of incisions that were eight months to one year post-operative, they would not have any reluctance to undergo breast lift surgery.”

Minimally perceptible incisions do not occur by accident. Our San Diego Breast Lift surgeons do everything possible to take tension off the incision line. By placing multiple sutures in the breast tissue and subcutaneous tissues, the suture line is free of any tension. Additionally, performing a “perfect closure” in which the skin edges are perfectly apposed without any gaps or irregularities also contributes to better scarring. These maneuvers take time, focus, and attention to detail, but are worth it in the long run as they result in a beautifully healed scar and a happy patient.

Post Operative Incisions After One Year

Breast Lift Results in Del Mar at Ranch & Coast Plastic Surgery "Breast "Breast "Breast

How Much Does

a Breast Lift Cost?

San Diego breast lift patients can expect the cost of their surgery to cost between $14,000–$18,000. Due to the variability of cases, some breast lifts are priced higher depending on the level of surgical complexity. You can also check out financing options to assist you in reaching your aesthetic goals. 

Woman outside in bikini

Patient Testimonials

Dr. Chasan Discusses Breast Lifts on the Wellness Hour

The Best Breast Lift in San Diego - Dr. Paul Chasan

Transcript of the discussion

Randy: You say that breast lifting has a lot of art to it. It’s an artistic talent.

Dr. Chasan: I think there is a lot of art to breast lifting. And the longer I’ve been in this game, the more I realized the disparity between artistic surgeon and non-artistic surgeon. There just is, and that’s one of the big displays of my art. And you know, so often I see the patient who comes to me and I say, “I’m sorry, you’re drooping and you’ll need a lift,” and they go down the street to Dr. X who says, “Oh no, you don’t need a lift, you don’t need the scars, let’s just put a bigger implant and it’ll fill up the volume.” And to somebody who’s unsuspecting that might sound right. But, if you think about it, if you are drooping without an implant and you disconnect that tissue and you put a heavy bag in there, guess what? You’re going to droop more. And invariable I see these people back, “I never wanted to be this big and now I’m drooping to my knees.”

So whether you need a lift or you don’t need a lift is really based on your anatomy. And if your nipple is at or below the crease, your inframammary crease, you probably need a lift. And some people need volume and a lift, so they need breast implant and a lift. And I really pride myself on how that lift goes, how the breast looks, how round the breast can be as far as the inferior pole, that the areolas are equal, that the areolas…I like smaller areolas. I like an incision that is so faint you barely can see it. And my technique that I’ve talked to you before about is I’m obsessed with taking tension off the incision.

Randy: This is for minimal scarring?

Dr. Chasan: Yes. So, for example, looking at a breast lift, the bottom of the breast where you wedge out, you know, where you take out tissue here, I actually wedge out a little bit of breast tissue there. And what I do is I actually close…the breast tissue has a lot of structure, so I actually close the breast tissue and then the skin’s just kissing. And if the skin’s just kissing, there’s no tension on the skin, you’re going to have a better scar. Then, if I can do a micro bite closure and just finely close that incision so it’s almost perfect, then they have the best opportunity to have the best scar. And so if I can do that on every patient, their scars are going to be a lot better.

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