What is a Mini-Breast Lift?
This type of mastopexy, or breast lift, is used when a woman presents with a more mild form of breast droop or ptosis. Plastic surgeons may also refer to this procedure as a periareolar mastopexy. In some women, there may be a fine line between who should have this procedure and who can get by with just a breast implant. This may vary from physician to physician and can be a difficult call in many cases. In situations where the person has very, very low drooping breasts, then the solution is fairly straightforward. But in cases of mild droop, it can be a bit more subjective (See the “in-between breast”). A donut breast lift is designed to help elevate the nipple to a more aesthetic level and can help reduce some of the extra tissue at the bottom of the breast. This lift can be performed in conjunction with a saline or silicone gel implant as well. It does have its limitations as to how much elevation can be attained. It is important to be very clear with what your goals are for your look.
How is a Donut Breast Lift or Periareolar Mastopexy Done?
In a full mastopexy, the incision starts around the areola, straight down the front of the breast and then underneath as well. This is not the case with the mini-breast lift, or periareolar mastopexy. The incision is confined to only around the areola, which is made smaller in most cases. An incision is made around the areola and an implant placed if needed, much like it is in breast augmentation. Another incision is then made around the first in a wider circle. The skin between the two circles is then removed and on rare occasion, some breast tissue as well. The resized areola is then stitched into a higher position than before. The larger circle is gathered into the areola in a “purse-string” fashion with more stitches.
Read our Complete Guide to the Donut Breast Lift
How Much Scarring will there be from my Periareolar Breast Lift?
As stated above, the incision is confined to only around the areola. At first it usually has a puckered look as the tissue has been gathered together. With time, this usually smoothes out. However, a word of caution: it is tempting to think that because the incision is much smaller than the full Mastopexy, Keyhole or Anchor incision that the scar will be unnoticeable. This may not be the case. Even this incision may need revision and this particular tissue of the breast can be prone to delayed wound healing and stretching. A permanent suture is used to try and minimize this but the end size and shape of the areola are not identical from side to side in most cases.
Donut Breast Lift Recovery Time
Post-operatively, Dr. Corey’s mini-breast lift patients reported being up and around within 24 to 36 hours following their surgery, but felt somewhat tired and sore for a few days. Dr. Corey will prescribe medication to help control your discomfort. You will have a wrap or binder on. You will shower in 48 hours and then you will begin wearing a sports bra. Dr. Corey will give you instructions on how and when to wear the sports bra. Your stitches will dissolve on their own. Right after your donut breast lift surgery, your breasts will appear very firm and a bit high riding. This is normal. Over the next one to four months, they should soften and settle to a more natural position. Dr. Corey will instruct you on exercises to do to help this process along. Actual breast swelling may take up to two to four weeks to dissipate.
Our donut breast lift or periareolar mastopexy patients were able to return to work after a few days. Dr. Corey will advise you on when to resume exercises and other activities. Direct physical contact with your breasts will probably cause discomfort for three to four weeks following surgery. Dr. Corey will follow your progress closely over the next six months and schedule you for a yearly visit thereafter. If you are in the appropriate age group, you should continue getting routine mammograms. A special technique is used for women with breast implants, so remember to inform the mammogram technician to ensure that you get a reliable reading.
Donut Mastopexy Before and After
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Mini-Breast Lift Results: What to Expect
After your mini-breast lift procedure, you will probably have very natural looking breasts that still have just a bit of droop at the bottom. You will most likely still need to wear a bra. It's very likely that you will not have real high riding breasts either. This can be very frustrating for women that are not good candidates for just implants or augmentation because of the droop that they have, and are not good candidates for the full lift because they just don’t droop enough.
How Is a Donut Mastopexy Different From Traditional Breast Lifts?
There are several differences between a donut mastopexy and a traditional full breast lift. A donut mastopexy is one of the least invasive surgical breast lift techniques available, and most of the time, there is very little breast tissue removed to achieve the result. It is most commonly performed with the addition of a breast implant, inserted at the same time as the Donut mastopexy.
One of the most important distinctions is that a donut mastopexy is performed with less extensive incisions than any other commonly used breast lift technique. The incisions are made only around the perimeter of the areola 360 degrees, without the verticle or the under breast incision of the traditional "anchor" mastopexy.
While shorter and more conservative incisions have many advantages, they do not allow for the same dramatic degree of correction that more traditional breast lift incisions can accomplish. A Donut mastopexy is a compromise operation for someone that needs some elevation of their nipple and breast tissue, but does not want or need the scarring of a full mastopexy. You will learn if these tradeoffs make sense for your specific needs during your consultation.
Is a Donut Mastopexy Painful?
Donut mastopexies are performed under anesthesia, so you will not feel any pain during surgery. In the days that follow, it is normal to experience some discomfort. Your breasts may also feel heavy, tight, or swollen. However, these effects are temporary and can be managed with pain medication and good aftercare. Dr. Corey will give you tips for a more comfortable recovery.
How Long Does a Donut Lift Take To Heal?
Donut lifts generally take less time to heal than many other plastic surgeries. That is because they are less invasive. You will likely be able to return to work a few days after your procedure. If a breast implant is added, your recovery will take a bit longer.
The bulk of the healing process happens within the first few weeks. However, it may take longer than that before you can resume all of your normal activities. Some swelling can also persist for several months, so it is good to be patient when appraising your final cosmetic outcome. Also, there are two things unique to this procedure. First of all, areola skin is very different than other skin and is much more prone to stretching, especially in this procedure where a lot of concentric force is applied. Secondly, to counteract that stretch, Dr. Corey uses a special suture made of Gortex is used that helps provide added strength and resistance to that stretch.
Who Is a Candidate for a Donut Lift?
Your candidacy for the donut breast lift technique will depend on factors such as the look of your breasts, how much loose skin you have, and the position of your nipples relative to your breast crease. Dr. Corey will evaluate these factors and make a recommendation during your visit.
In general, a donut lift may be appropriate if you want to:
- Correct a mild degree of breast sagging
- Elevate the position of your nipples
- Decrease the size of your areolas
- Help elevate the tissue at the lower part of your breasts
If you do not want or need the same degree of lift that more invasive techniques can achieve, then the periareolar method may be a particularly good choice. Keep in mind that, in certain cases, placing a breast implant can achieve very similar goals without performing a lift procedure.
Can I Combine a Donut Mastopexy With Other Procedures?
It is entirely possible to combine your donut mastopexy with other procedures. In fact, many women choose to do so in order to correct all of their concerns and get the most comprehensive results.
For example, as stated above, a donut lift is often combined with breast augmentation. This popular duo involves placing breast implants during the lift procedure to enhance breast shape, size, and position. Sometimes, periareolar mastopexy is paired with body surgeries during a mommy makeover.
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Call Dr. Corey For Donut Breast Lift Surgery In Scottsdale, AZ!
If you believe you might be a candidate for the mini-breast lift or periareolar mastopexy, or are not sure exactly what might work in your particular case, please contact Dr. Corey’s office in Scottsdale today to make a consultation appointment. Dr. Corey offers three types of breast lift surgery consultations, all of which are $200: an individual consultation, a group consultation (10 to 20 people), or an online consultation. In the days before your consultation, write down all questions or concerns you have and make sure to bring them up with your surgeon. Dial 480-462-6612 today or fill out the form in our contact page.
To see firsthand how a donut breast lift can change your bustline, click here to see donut mastopexy surgery before and after photos.
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