Mini-breast lifts are performed with local anesthesia and are designed to help elevate the nipple to a more aesthetic level while reducing some of the extra tissue at the bottom of the breast. They are popular because they can give a nice lift without the need for general anesthesia. Past surgeries, pregnancy, breast-feeding, and normal aging can take a toll on the appearance of the breasts. Mini-breast lifts are more commonly used for patients with sagging in their nipples rather than their full breasts. The nipple may be in a lower position such as at the bottom half of breast or pointing downwards. Raising the nipple and areola back to their original positions will provide a firm and youthful contour. Mini-breast lifts may not be performed in conjunction with breast augmentation -- this requires a full breast lift to be performed under general anesthesia.
Good candidates for this procedure:
Patients with nipples and areolas that are lower on the breast than desired
Patients with nipples or areolas that appear different from one another; one nipple/areola may be slightly lower or higher than the other
- Patients who are finished with childbearing and breast-feeding (If you plan to have children, you may want to postpone cosmetic breast surgery. Pregnancy may stretch the breasts and reduce their volume, compromising surgery benefits)
What to expect: Consultation
All cosmetic consultations are complimentary and serve as a great opportunity to gain further insight by voicing your concerns and having questions answered. During the initial consultation, Dr. Hsu will ask some questions to get to know you and determine if you are a good candidate for a mini-breastlift.
Dr. Hsu will first ask you about your specific goals for the mini-breast lift, including what areas specifically you would like to improve. He will also ask you about your general health history, including any existing medical problems, prior surgery, daily medications, allergies, and any smoking habits. For patients over the age of 40, Dr. Hsu will ask to make sure that you have had a mammogram within the past year.
Dr. Hsu will then give you his assessment on whether you would be a good candidate for the procedure, and if so, how the surgical plan should be individualized for your anatomy. After a thorough examination, Dr. Hsu will choose the incision location. Since each patient's anatomy and surgical goals are different, you and Dr. Hsu will work together to reach optimal aesthetic results.
On the day of surgery, Dr. Hsu will meet you before surgery to make markings on the areas planned for surgery and answer any last minute questions you may have. Mini-breast lifts are performed under local anesthesia for a duration of approximately one to one-and-a-half hours. In most patients, Dr. Hsu will use an incision around the nipple (circumareolar incision) to lift the nipple. He can also operate on the breast tissue underneath the skin to provide a bit of a lift. This method limits scarring because the incision is only around the nipple. In some patients, some skin is also removed below the nipple, depending on each individual patient’s need.
Recovery & Post-operative Instructions:
After the surgery, you will wear a surgical bra for approximately a week to aid the healing process. It is not recommended to lift elbows above your shoulders, but you can still use your arms for everyday activities. Most importantly, you should keep the surgical area dry until Dr. Hsu gives his approval to shower. To clean the rest of your body, you can bathe from the shoulders down. Dr. Hsu will usually remove stitches during your first week follow up appointment. Swelling & bruising will peak about 48 hours after surgery but will then decrease significantly in the first two weeks. Most patients can return to work after two weeks, but many patients return even sooner. The biggest limitation for post-operative patients is driving, which should be avoided while taking pain medication. Patients usually stop taking pain medication after five to seven days and plan their work schedules accordingly. Six weeks is usually an appropriate time to gradually return to full exercise and activity.
During the recovery period, we recommend walking within the house several times per day to speed healing and minimize the possibility of developing blood clots. If you have any issues after surgery, Dr. Hsu is available 24 hours for any immediate concerns. For an extended period of time after surgery, Dr. Hsu will see you in follow up to make sure you are healing well. Follow up appointments are scheduled one week, two weeks, and several months to a year afterward.
Mini versus Full?
- Mini-procedures are not as extensive. The results are still rejuvenation but not as substantial as a full breast lift.
- Mini-procedures are gaining popularity due to the decreased downtime and recovery.
- Mini-procedures are done under local anesthesia in our clinic.
Dr. Hsu's view on a Mini-Breast Lift.
I think the mini-breast lift is really a great option for breasts that only show a small degree of sagging, or in particular those cases in which the breast shape looks quite good but the nipple position is very low. In those patients, very good results can be achieved with a mini-breast lift, without the need for general anesthesia.
Nearly all of my patients for mini-breast lift have had prior pregnancy, and that is the major reason for the breast sagging. In some patients, it is due to weight loss or changes related to normal aging. Overall, I find it to be quite a straightforward procedure that is straightforward to perform.