What's the Difference between a Mini Breast Lift and a Full Breast Lift?


Sagging and drooping of the breasts may occur with age, pregnancy, weight fluctuations or for some women, even right after puberty! If this sounds familiar, board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. John Corey may have a breast lift technique that’s right for you. While a full breast lift addresses significant drooping, a mini breast lift is best suited to moderately droopy and/or stretched areolas. Dr. Corey helps you choose the right breast surgery for the look you want to achieve.

Full Breast Lift Candidates

Woman in a red bikini at the beach smiling after breast lift surgeryThe comprehensive mastopexy procedure is a good match for women who are experiencing significant breast deflation and elongation. It corrects:

  • Loss of fullness in the upper portion of the breasts
  • Nipples that have dropped so low that  they are at the very bottom of the breasts
  • Breasts that are now resting on the upper abdomen

Mastopexy cannot enlarge the breasts on its own and in fact, takes some tissue away in the process, but it pairs well with breast augmentation.  So to be the same size or to be a bit larger, Dr. Corey may recommend the placement of saline or silicone breast implants.  

Candidates for Mini Breast Lift

Also called a periareolar mastopexy or a donut lift, a mini breast lift procedure provides limited lift and is a good match for women with mild sagging, of either the nipple or bottom part of the breast. Overall, this procedure corrects:

  • Nipples that point downward or that have descended
  • A small amount of excess tissue at the bottom of the breasts

Like a full breast lift, the mini version may be combined with the placement of saline or silicone breast implants.

What's the Difference, Specifically?

Incisions are one of the big differences between a full vs. mini mastopexy. In a full lift, incisions are made around the areolas, vertically straight down from the areola to the breast crease, and then horizontally along the breast crease. In a mini procedure, a circular incision is made 360 degrees around the areola, is sometimes called a "donut" mastopexy because of this incision shape. Dr. Corey can then mildly elevate the position of the nipples through the “donut” incisions, and may remove a small amount of excess, sagging tissue if necessary.  

What About Breast Augmentation?

Breast augmentation gives an improvement in both shape and size, .and some women may even get a slight correction of droop from just breast implants alone.  However, if some type of lift is needed, trying to solve the problem with an implant only will only make the droop worse.  The only way to know which one is right for you is to visit Dr. Corey for a consultation. After listening to your concerns, he will determine which breast surgery option fits best with your goals and with your breast characteristics.

Find Out For Sure in a Consultation

Living in Scottsdale or the greater Phoenix area, you have many surgeons from which to choose, but with his focus exclusively on breast and body aesthetics only, board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. John J. Corey is extensively experienced in breast and body procedures. Practicing since 1993, Dr. Corey has the aesthetic instinct and technical skill to create beautiful results that flatter your body. To arrange a consultation with Dr. Corey at our Scottsdale plastic surgery practice, please call 480-767-7700.