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Mastopexy, otherwise known as breast lift surgery, is an elective cosmetic surgery procedure done to change the shape of the breasts. Mastopexy may include changing the position of the nipple and areola, but typically involves lifting the breast while removing skin. Combined with breast augmentation surgery, mastopexy changes the size, shape and elevation of the breast.

Sagging breasts, typically a result of weight loss, age, pregnancy, and breastfeeding, is a common reason for mastopexy. Breast lift surgery can improve the look of the breasts affected by a loss of skin elasticity. This type of surgery isn’t recommended for women who desire to have more children because subsequent pregnancies and breastfeeding are likely to counteract the benefits of the surgery.

Performed on a San Francisco, California outpatient basis under a local anesthetic, a mastopexy doesn’t require a lot of skin removal. Patients in need of a more considerable procedure may need general anesthesia and an extended hospital stay, which is more common in large-breasted women who need more skin removed. Depending on the extent of the procedure, mastopexy cosmetic surgery procedures can take up to three hours and 30 minutes to perform. Less extensive procedures can be done in about one hour.

There are three main types of mastopexy operations: concentric, vertical, and anchor. A concentric procedure, performed on women who have minimal sagging, involves two incisions around the areola to reposition the nipple upward. For women who have the most sagging, a vertical mastopexy is done, and includes an incision to the crease area beneath the breast. The most invasive breast lift surgery is an anchor mastopexy, which repositions the nipple through an anchor-shaped incision above the nipple.