Breast Lift – Mastopexy.


Get more volume, fullness and improve breast symmetry.

What is Mastopexy or Breast Lift?

Mastopexy, or “breast lift,” is a surgical procedure that tightens and lifts loose, sagging skin of the breasts. Breasts can become “saggy” or ptotic after significant weight change, pregnancy or aging; this can also occur during the development and growth period naturally. A mastopexy tightens the loose skin and repositions enlarged and / or downward pointing nipple-areolar complexes back into a higher, more youthful position.

Breast Lift Benefits

  • Better shape of your breasts
  • Enhanced cleavage
  • More youthful appearance
  • Less pulling on your shoulders from the weight of hanging breasts
  • Improved posture & confidence

Breast Lift Videos

Breast Lift Candidates

Anyone who desires a more lifted appearance to their breasts may be a candidate for this procedure. The best candidate for a mastopexy / breast lift is 18 years old, healthy, and of stable weight. If recently pregnant, you should try to return to close to your pre-pregnancy weight and have not breastfed for at least 6 months. If indicated, a normal mammogram and / or ultrasound imaging of your breasts will need to be obtained and current within one year.

Breast Lift Techniques

There are many different surgical techniques used to perform a breast lift. If not much skin excess or glandular ptosis is present, then a peri-areolar incision (incision around just the areolae) can be utilized. However, as more skin needs to be removed and more lift to the actual breast tissue and nipple-areolar complexes is needed, the pattern of scarring extends from around the areolae, downwards like a lollipop, and across the inframammary crease (i.e., full scar, Wise pattern, or “anchor” lift). The choice of technique is ultimately based on the discretion of your plastic surgeon and his or her opinion about what scar pattern and type of lift will best suit your needs.

Breast Lift Procedure Types

  • Peri-areolar / “Benelli” lift
  • Circumvertical / “lollipop” lift
  • Full scar / “Wise” pattern lift

Similar Procedures and Comparison

If you have true breast skin and glandular ptosis, then the only way to achieve a lift of your breasts is with a surgical mastopexy or breast lift procedure. There are no good non-surgical alternatives. Only a board-certified plastic surgeon has enough experience and training to provide you with the options for your breasts and suggest the type of lift to best meet your goals.

Your Initial Breast Lift Consultation

At your first visit to discuss a mastopexy, you will fill out a complete health history and provide insurance information. It is helpful to have records of any prior surgeries you have had on your breasts as well as a copy of reports from any recent breast imaging (usually within the past year). If you have implants in place, then information on your implants and implant surgery is also helpful. Your plastic surgeon will review these items and examine your breasts. He / she will take measurements of your chest and breasts. Pre-operative photos will likely be done at this visit as well. At the end of the consultation, you will meet with the patient care coordinator who will provide you with a personalized quote, assist with scheduling, and review what additional labs, imaging, or medical evaluations are needed prior to your surgery.

Breast Lift Pre-Procedure Preparation

On the day of your surgery, plan to wear loose, comfortable clothing, such as a button-up shirt (nothing that goes over your head) and stretchy sweat pants or similar bottoms. All nail polish and jewelry should be removed. Choose to wear glasses instead of contact lenses. Please leave any valuable items at home. A few days before your surgery, we will order your post-operative medications, including pain medication and an antibiotic, so you can pick them up ahead of time. You may wish to buy the herbal supplement, arnica montana, on hand since this can help diminish bruising and swelling post-operatively. Aquaphor and an antibiotic ointment may also be necessary to have on-hand. You will be provided with a surgical bra after surgery; there is no need to buy any special garments ahead of time. If you are on certain medications there may be specific instructions on how to take them prior to surgery. Please notify your surgeon and patient care coordinator if there is a change in your medical history or new medications.

What to Expect During Breast Lift Procedure

On the day of your surgery, you will be checked-in at the same location as your initial consultation and brought to a quiet exam room. After changing into a surgical gown, a nurse will take your vitals and review your health history. Additional photos may need to be taken. Your surgeon will then review the procedure and answer any questions. He / she will re-examine you and likely place some markings with an indelible marker on your breasts for reference. You will meet with a nurse anesthetist prior to being escorted to the operating suite. A mastopexy can take anywhere from 60 minutes to 2-3 hours or more. After the surgery, you will spend about 1-2 hours in recovery before going home.

Breast Lift Recovery

There will be a period of healing and discomfort after breast surgery. Some bruising, swelling, and pain are expected. You may require narcotic pain medication in the first 1 to 3 days. If you were prescribed antibiotics, you will need to take these for the full course; please notify us if you cannot tolerate the full course of antibiotics. Most patients do not require narcotic pain medication after two weeks; many do not require any pain medication after the first 1-3 days. Although it is natural to want to rest as part of recovery, we encourage you to get up and move some, if even just inside your house to get a glass of water or to use the bathroom. You will be able to use your arms for basic activities such as eating and getting dressed; heavy lifting more than 5 pounds is not recommended for at least 4-6 weeks. For many, a gradual increase in activity is tolerated at weeks 3-4, when you feel more comfortable and better healed. A non-underwire bra is recommended until fully healed.

Breast Lift Results

Your breasts may look and feel swollen for a few weeks after a mastopexy. As the swelling resolves and the incisions heal, your breasts will take a softer, more relaxed shape. You may feel a change in sensation of certain parts of your breasts. These changes usually resolve as part of the healing process; however, a change in sensation, such as to the nipple-areolar complex, may persist. In addition, while the surgical changes are immediate, they are not considered permanent; the longevity of your results depends on many factors including your overall health and tissue quality, genetics, and lifestyle.


The procedure is performed under general endotracheal anesthesia. You will need an adult over 18 years of age to accompany you home and sign off on your discharge paperwork. Expect to spend 1-2 hours in the recovery area before you will feel ready to go home with your chaperone.

Breast Lift Complications

A mastopexy is a safe procedure when performed by a board-certified plastic surgeon who is familiar with breast surgery. As with any procedure or surgery, however, there can be a risk for complications:

  • Adverse scarring / wound healing complications: A mastopexy involves incisions on your breasts. While every effort will be made to avoid unacceptable scarring, incisions can still become raised, widened, irregular, or unsightly. Loss of tissue and / or delayed healing can also occur. Wound healing complications occur more frequently if you have a history of tobacco abuse / smoking, diabetes, and / or poor circulation. It is important to disclose your full health history with your surgeon.
  • Infection: Bacteria can enter any healing wound or area of surgical manipulation, causing an infection. Infections are usually treated with antibiotics; rarely, surgery may be necessary to clear an infection.
  • Change in nipple-areolar or breast sensation: changes in sensation (numbness or decreased sensation; hypersensitivity or increased sensation) can occur and usually resolve over time. However, these changes can be permanent.
  • Change or loss of breastfeeding ability: While the majority of women who were able to breastfeed prior to a mastopexy can do so after this procedure, some women are unable to have this same functionality after a mastopexy.
  • Change in breast shape or recurrent ptosis: Surgical changes are essentially permanent. However, gravity and aging will continue to play a factor in ongoing changes that can result in recurrence of sagging skin, breast ptosis, or loss of your aesthetic result.

Breast Lift Cost and Financing

Mastopexy is considered an elective, cosmetic procedure and not usually covered by insurance except in cases of severe breast asymmetry or for cancer reconstruction. The cost for a mastopexy depends on the type of breast lift required and any ancillary procedures (i.e., addition/ removal of an implant, removal of breast tissue) that may be indicated. The usual price range is $10,500-$13,500 which includes the surgeon’s fee, facility fee, and anesthesia charges. Your pre- and post-operative visits are also included in this price. If you need financing, Plastic Surgery of Westchester can assist you in applying for Care Credit.

Breast Lift FAQ’s

What is the difference between a breast lift and a breast augmentation?

A breast lift brings loose, sagging breast tissue and a downward pointing nipple-areolar complex back into a better position (at or above the inframammary fold / overlying the chest muscle) on your chest. As a result, your cleavage can be naturally enhanced to some degree. However, it is possible that even when only skin is removed, you may actually feel as though your breasts are smaller in volume. A breast augmentation differs from a breast lift because it serves to enhance the breast volume, projection, and cleavage by the addition of a saline or silicone implant. A qualified, board-certified plastic surgeon can help you decide if either one or a combination of these procedures may be right for you.

How will my scars look over time?

There will be scars on your breasts after a mastopexy / breast lift. These can vary in extent and appearance based on the type of lift performed, skin quality, and the biology of your healing process. While any scar is essentially permanent, they will flatten and fade with time. Your surgeon will also recommend scar management modalities such as scar massage, use of topical scar fade products, silicone sheeting, steroid injections, and any laser or microneedling procedures that can be used to improve their appearance, as indicated. The plastic surgeons at Plastic Surgery of Westchester will counsel you on scar management modalities and have laser and microneedling technologies to treat your scars.

How long will my mastopexy results last?

The results after a mastopexy / breast lift are dependent on several factors, including: weight maintenance, overall health, tissue quality, aging, pregnancy / breastfeeding or other lifestyle factors that specifically affect your breasts post-operatively.

What other procedures are combined with a mastopexy?

A mastopexy / breast lift is commonly performed as a sole procedure to improve your breast appearance. In some cases, the procedure can be combined with other procedures at the same time. These include: liposuction, tummy tuck (mommy make-over), breast implants (augmentation mastopexy), BBL, etc. Your board-certified plastic surgeon will help you determine if you are a candidate to add additional procedures to your breast lift surgery.

How long will I be in my post-surgical bra?

At 3-4 weeks, when you are better healed, you will be cleared to transition from the surgical bra to a more regular (usually non-underwire) bra option.

Facilities & Hospital Affiliations

Our surgeons have hospital privileges at Montefiore Medical Center, Jacobi Medical Center, Westchester Medical Center, Montefiore New Rochelle and New York Presbyterian Lawrence Hospital. They also perform procedures in their fully accredited operating room in Harrison, NY.

Our state of the art facility is professionally designed and decorated for your comfort. We are always interested to know if there is anything we can do to enhance your experience. We appreciate your suggestions and pledge to work as a team to make your time here a rewarding experience.

  • Montefiore Medical Center
  • Jacobi Medical Center
  • Westchester Medical Center
  • Montefiore New Rochelle
  • New York Presbyterian Lawrence Hospital

Accreditation and Associations

We maintain an AAAASF accredited surgical suite, equipped like a hospital operating room with the privacy and ease of an office setting, offering full general anesthesia for more complex procedures as well as sedation and local anesthesia for other procedures. We enjoy a strong relationship with some of the finest hospitals in the area, offering overnight and extended post-operative stays if medically advisable. This is ideal for our out of town patients, those with little post-operative help, or those desiring a more private recovery. We can also arrange your stay at a variety of hotels within minutes of our facility and arrange an overnight “sitter” if desired.


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Schedule your Breast Lift/ Mastopexy Consultation

Please contact us with any questions or if you would like to setup a time for a one-on-one consultation with one of our surgeons.

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Dr. Nicole Nemeth

Plastic & Reconstructive Surgeon

American Board of Plastic Surgery


Dr. Vadim Pisarenko

Plastic & Reconstructive Surgeon

American Board of Plastic Surgery
American Board of Surgery


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