A Breast Lift (Mastopexy), raises the breasts by removing skin excess and tightening the surrounding tissue to create a more youthful breast contour.
As with any procedure, the details of a breast lift recovery can vary from patient to patient. In general, most women can expect to feel well enough to return to work after 1 – 2 weeks, with the majority of their swelling resolving in about 3 – 6 weeks.
A breast lift, or mastopexy, is performed as an outpatient procedure under general anesthesia. The procedure typically lasts one to three hours. After one or two hours in the recovery room, the patient is discharged to home. Patients are instructed to relax, but bed rest is not necessary. In fact, we prefer that you move around some. You may eat anything you want right after surgery. You may shower that day or the next day. There is very little wound care needed.
The incisions are covered by strips of 1″ paper tape. There is a large clear plastic dressing over the lower half of the breast. All of this will be removed approximately 10 days after surgery. There are usually only one or two sutures that need to be removed. The rest are buried under the skin and will eventually dissolve. Drains are typically not necessary. A surgical bra is worn for four weeks around the clock. Patients typically are off work for three to seven days. There are no restrictions after three weeks postoperatively. It usually takes 6 to 12 weeks for the breasts to achieve their final shape
As one of the main concerns with mastopexy is scar quality, we have a special protocol that we use for the breast scars. When you are seen 10 to 14 days after surgery, we will remove the paper tape that we placed on the incisions in the operating room. Then, we will apply a clear plastic dressing called Tegaderm to the scars. You will be instructed to leave this on as long as possible. We would like for you to use the Tegaderm for a total of three months. Usually it will require changing every three or four weeks. The Tegaderm applied to the scar at the fold beneath the breast may require changing more frequently than the Tegaderm applied around the nipple. We have found that the use of Tegaderm for three months after surgery significantly improves scar quality.
Pain after mastopexy is usually very moderate. Often non-narcotic analgesics are all that is required. This allows for a faster recovery and reduces the side effects that are often seen with narcotics such as Demerol and codeine