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Breast Augmentation vs Breast Lift

December 1, 2021

breast augmentation or breast liftMany women are dissatisfied with the shape, size and droop of their breasts, especially after childbirth or weight loss. Depending on your goals, there are several plastic surgery options available that address these breast issues with the Breast Augmentation and Breast Lift procedures being the most popular. But, how do you know which procedure is right for you?

Breast Augmentation

Ask yourself one simple question, Do I want to bigger breasts? If the answer is yes, then you’ll require a Breast Augmentation. When considering Breast Augmentation, there are three major aspects that you and your plastic surgeon will have to agree on for your desired outcome: the type of incision for the surgery, the type of implants to be used, the size of the implants and the shape of the implants.

Breast Augmentation Incisions

The three most common incisions are the periareolar incision, which is around the nipple, the trans-axillary incision, which is located in the armpit, and the inframammary incision, which lies underneath the breast fold. While each technique has its advantages and disadvantages, I typically prefer the inframammary incision since it is the least likely to develop complications, hides the scar really well and provides the best access to the breast tissue.

Types of Breast Implants

Saline or Silicone? Saline breast implants are made up of a silicone shell filled with a saltwater solution. This saline solution can be harmlessly absorbed by the body should the implant tear. Saline implants are particularly good for patients that have significant breast tissue, adding volume and shape while providing a firmer look and feel. Silicone implants are made up of a silicone shell filled with a silicone gel interior. Unlike Saline implants, should the implant tear or rupture, the gel is designed to stay in place and not leak out. Slightly more expensive, Silicone implants are a good fit for patients with very little breast tissue and provide a more natural feel. Silicone implants are currently the more popular choice at our office. Both types of implants are FDA approved.

Size of Implants

One of the most important decisions with Breast Augmentation will be the size of your implants. There are many options, and you and your plastic surgeon together will need to agree on the perfect amount of increase that will feel most comfortable in relation to your body type and goals. We want you to be happy with your augmentation and that it’s a perfect fit with your lifestyle as well.

Shape of Implants

Implants can be round or tear-shaped. Teardrop implants are meant to resemble the breast’s natural slope shape. Depending on your desired results, you and your surgeon will select the shape that fits your needs best, whether you want a more natural or more obvious look.

Breast Lift

Now, if you don’t want to increase the size of your breasts, but rather want to correct droopiness and give your breasts a perkier and more youthful appearance, a Breast Lift may be your solution. No implants are involved in a Breast Lift. Instead, the breast tissue is lifted and tightened to give your breasts better contour and improve droopiness and/or asymmetry.

Types of Breast Lift Techniques

Depending on the amount of ptosis or droop you have, there are three types of breast lift techniques to address your issue: the periareolar lift, the vertical lift and the inferior pedicle lift, aka the anchor lift. Perfect for patients who have large areolas and minimal droop, the periareolar makes an incision around the circumference of the areola. The vertical lift uses the same incision as the periareolar lift and a vertical incision from the areola down to the inframammary fold to address moderate drooping. The anchor lift uses and inverted-T incision that follows the path of the periareolar and vertical lift incisions along with an incision in the breast fold. This approach offers maximum lift, removes the greatest amount of excess skin and is most commonly used.

 As explained, each procedure addresses unique concerns. And, oftentimes when patients want to address multiple issues, these two procedures are combined as a Breast Lift with Implants. It is always best to have a consultation with a board-certified plastic surgeon to help you determine what procedure will provide you with the best results for your circumstance. As one of my specialties, breast enhancement is performed abundantly at my practice. If you’d like to schedule a consult, please reach out to our friendly and knowledgeable staff.