Breast reduction (mastopexy) and breast lift (reduction mammaplasty) procedures are often confused with one another, but they serve two distinct purposes. While these two procedures both involve improving the appearance of the breasts, each treats a different set of issues and aims to accomplish a specific goal. Sometimes, women come into our office thinking they want a breast reduction when a breast lift would better achieve their aesthetic goals, and vice versa. To clear up some confusion and help women considering their breast enhancement options make more informed decisions, we’re discussing the differences between a breast reduction and a breast lift:
As the name suggests, a breast reduction is a procedure intended to decrease the size of the breasts. Women opt to have breast reduction surgery for a variety of reasons—to relieve back pain, to make their clothes fit better, or simply to improve their breasts’ appearance—and are often surprised to see how much of a difference this procedure can make. Excess tissue means excess weight, which can cause the breasts to sag and droop in addition to triggering physical discomfort. Having exceptionally large breasts can also cause a woman’s nipples to stretch and distort over time, so breast reduction surgery is often combined with an areola reduction procedure. A breast reduction only involves the removal of tissue, so while it may restore some perkiness to the breasts by making them lighter, a breast lift is generally the best solution for sagging breasts.
A breast lift also involves the removal of breast tissue, but only insofar as removing tissue helps give the breasts a more balanced projection. There are many types of life events, in addition to time itself, that can cause the volume of the breasts to become disproportionately concentrated toward the bottom of the breast area. Often employed to offset the effects of childbirth, breastfeeding, weight loss, or aging, a breast lift gives the breasts a more lifted appearance by redistributing tissue from the bottom to the top and center of the breasts.
As you might imagine, a breast lift is often combined with a breast reduction to achieve an optimal outcome. A breast reduction can reduce the size of the breasts, and a breast lift can correct the sagging that having excessively large breasts might have caused. One or both of these procedures may be what you need to get the breasts you want, but the only way to know for sure is to have a consultation with an experienced plastic surgeon. If you’re interested in getting a breast reduction, a breast lift, or any of the many other plastic-surgery procedures we offer, please contact one of our Atlanta Plastic Surgery locations to schedule a consultation today. Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook and Twitter for the latest plastic surgery news and updates.