One of the most common reasons women seek breast surgery in our practice is to fix the deflated appearance of their chest after having children. Women miss the fullness in the upper half off their breasts that looked good in clothing and bathing suits—the volume that mysteriously went away after breast feeding. Most of these women express a desire to increase volume or fullness, plus they want their breasts to be perkier.
What exactly does perky mean? Perkiness exists when the nipples are in an ideal position. This means they are above the breast crease and centered on the most projecting part of the breast. As your breasts enlarge from pregnancy and breast feeding, the skin stretches. When your size decreases, you are left with extra skin. This causes the nipples to fall from their ideal position as the breasts deflate.
How can we fix it? First, we need to decide how much more volume you want. By using breast implant sizers, we can pick the right implant volume. This is the most accurate way to find the size you will be happy with in the long term. Once you have chosen your size, we need to decide if you need a lift.
Whether you need a breast lift or mastopexy depends on your nipple position relative to your breast crease or inframammary fold (IMF). Basically, if your nipple is above your breast crease, you do not need a lift. If your nipple is below your breast crease, you need a lift. If your nipple is right at your breast crease, it depends. If your nipple is right at your breast crease and you choose a small implant, you will probably need a lift for the best possible shape. If you choose a moderate sized or larger implant, you will probably have a good shape without a lift.
The pictures below show examples of nipple position. Both women show signs of deflation where they could benefit from more volume, but their degree of perkiness if very different. The picture on the left shows a woman with good perkiness—her nipples are above the fold. The image on the right shows a woman lacking perkiness with her nipples below the fold.
In the next blog, we will compare the results when the perkier breast is treated with a breast augmentation and the non-perky breast is treated with a breast augmentation plus a breast lift. As you will see, we can get a nice improvement for both women when we use the right techniques for the situation and your goals. For more information, visit our video about breast augmentation and lift. If you are ready to take the next step, contact us to set up a consultation at one of our convenient Cincinnati, Ohio or Northern Kentucky offices. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter for the latest updates on informative blogs and specials.
In part I, you learned how to tell if you need a breast lift with your augmentation to get the best possible shape. When a breast implant is inserted, its bottom edge is near the breast crease or inframammary fold. Adding a breast implant does not lift the nipple. So, if your nipples are below your fold before, they will be below your crease after surgery, too. That is, unless you have a lift. What does it look like if your nipples are below your fold and you get a breast augmentation without a lift? Well, not good generally. Since the implant is sitting above the fold, its shape and volume are higher on the chest. The nipples and surrounding natural breast tissue, however, are lower and appear to be melting off of the implants. Not pretty. To summarize, breast implants CAN be used to correct deflated appearing breasts when the nipples are not too low. If the nipples are too low, a lift is necessary, too.
Now, let’s look at our before and after pictures from part I. The perkier patient had some deflation, and the breast augmentation filled out the extra skin, improved fullness and enhanced shape. The less perky patient had an augmentation plus a lift. The implants filled out the breast and improved fullness, but the lift was necessary to maximize shape. You can see that the nipples are above the fold now, and the shape is much better.
Both patients were able to get a nice shape and a result that made them happy. The trade off with a lift is more scars. When faced with severe sagginess, many women would gladly accept the scars for a much better shape. Fortunately, the scars generally improve a lot over time. In most patients, the redness fades and the scars soften. In fact, we take some extra measures in our practice to help these scars fade and soften more quickly with scar massage and a special scar cream.
We hope this blog helped you understand breast augmentation and breast lifting. Contact us to set up a consultation if you are ready to pursue your aesthetic goals!