Breast volume after breast lift Introduction The breast lift is a plastic surgery procedure that restores the firmness and youthfulness of saggy and loose breasts. Many factors can cause your breasts to become loose and saggy. These include pregnancy, breastfeeding, weight fluctuations, lifestyle, certain medications, and gravity. There is no doubt that when the breasts become saggy, they look aesthetically unwelcoming. As such, many women decide to undergo the breast lift. The procedure lifts the breasts by removing the excess skin and fat and tightening the breast muscles. Many women are concerned that since the breast lift involves removal of the excess skin and some excess fat, their breasts will lose volume. They are curious as to how their breasts will appear after a breast lift. Breast volume after breast lift The primary goal of the breast lift is to make the breasts firmer and youthful. Given the fact that it involves removal of the excess skin and fat that is causing the breasts to sag, the rationale is that the breasts may lose volume as a result. In principle, most patients do not lose considerable volume after a breast lift because the procedure does not remove more fat from the breasts. Moreover, it does not remove the glandular tissue, which accounts for the major volume of the breasts. The breast lift is performed under general anesthesia. Besides removing the excess skin and some of the excess fat, the separated breast muscles are tightened and the nipples are removed and placed higher on the breasts where they appear aesthetically pleasant. There is this opinion that the breasts will appear smaller because the surface region of the breasts will be decreased via removal of the excess skin. Majority of women desire not only to have firmer and youthful breasts but also a breast that has sufficient upper pole volume. Right after the breast lift, you may notice that your breasts have upper pole volume; however, as the breasts heal and the swelling subsides, the upper pole volume will decrease. To get upper pole fullness, you should consider getting implants. If your breasts are severely saggy, you should undergo the breast lift and avoid implants because the implants would make the breasts saggy again. However, if you still want to get upper pole fullness, you can get smaller implants during the combined surgery of breast lift and implants. It will add some upper pole fullness to your breasts. On the other hand, if your breasts are mildly saggy, you may consider getting implants instead of a breast lift because the implants will not only make your breasts firmer in this case but will also add upper pole volume to your breasts. In any case, you must discuss your aesthetic goals with the plastic surgeon during the pre-operative consultation. If you are still in doubt and your breasts are moderately or severely saggy, you can undergo the breast lift first and then wait and see the results. If you still feel the need for upper pole volume, you may discuss with your surgeon whether it is possible to get implants and achieve upper pole fullness. Normally, patients should wait for about six months after the breast lift to see the final results and then make a decision about their breast volume. ASPS study The matter of breast volume after a breast lift was the topic of a study undertaken by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons. The study concluded that after the breast lift, many women said they experienced a reduction in their cup size. They said they were wearing a smaller bra after the breast lift. However, the report noted that the difference in cup size was a result of the change in shape of the breasts instead of a reduction in the volume or size of the breasts. Under the investigation, twenty women who got a breast lift were clinically examined. All patients had a breast lift without implants or breast reduction. The researchers questioned the patients five years following the operations. They asked them about the bra cup size before and after the procedure, taking into account their weight fluctuations and associated factors. On average, the patients said they experienced a reduction of one bra cup size after the procedure. Volume reduction or breast profile enhancement During the ASPS study, the investigators were curious as to why there was a decrease in cup size after the breast lift and not after breast reduction. They also found that most women were not wearing the right bra size. They also accredited the bra size issues to the variance in the breast shape and definition before and after the breast lift. Patients undergoing the breast lift had saggy breasts resulting from breastfeeding, aging, and weight changes. The fact is that when the breasts become saggy, they appear larger and fill out more of the bra that the actual bra size. Why does this happen? It occurs because when the breasts become saggy, more of the breast volume sits lower on the chest. As such, patients may feel easy with a large cup size bra in such a case. After the breast lift, the breasts become firmer and sit higher on the chest. As such, women presume their breast volume has decreased. The fact is that the breast lift does not reduce your breast volume considerably. It enhances the breasts, making them youthful, firmer, and perky. It simply raises the profile of the breasts, which is the major goal of the breast lift and the primary reason for which women seek the procedure. Change in breast shape and position Even though the breast lift does not remove any glandular tissue or muscles from the breasts, the shape and position of the breasts change because of the firmness of the breasts. The change in breast shape results in a decrease in filling of the cup size of the bra. The fact is that saggy breasts sit lower on your chest and take up more bra cup size. On the other hand, firmer and youthful breasts sit higher on the chest and take a decreased bra cup size. In light of the aforementioned, patients must not base their aesthetic goals or success of the surgery solely on breast volume. Since you are undergoing the breast lift to restore the firmness and perkiness of your loose breasts, you should measure the success of the procedure regarding the restoration of the youthfulness of your breasts. Youthful breasts are not always voluminous. Instead, they stand higher on the chest, with the nipples pointing forward and the breasts looking perky and sexy. The patient must make it certain to discuss her aesthetic goals with the plastic surgeon in advance of the surgery. If you want to achieve sufficient breast volume with the breast lift, you must communicate this to the surgeon. The surgeon will examine your breasts and goals and then come up with a solution for you that can help you achieve your aesthetic goals. Keep in mind, however, that the breast lift’s goal is not to increase your breast volume. If you want to increase your breast size and if your breasts are not very saggy, implants can help you achieve your desired results. On the other hand, if you want to get firmer and voluminous breasts, the plastic surgeon may recommend a combined surgery of breast augmentation and breast lift. Of course, the surgeon will examine your breasts before recommending this approach. You can then decide whether you want to undergo both procedures in a single go or undergo the breast lift and then wait to see the results before deciding on breast augmentation. Keep in mind that the combo of breast lift and augmentation is different from the breast lift or breast augmentation alone. There are more risks associated with the procedure. However, there are also many benefits of having both procedures at the same time. The plastic surgeon can best tell you whether you should have both procedures at the same time or at different times. Conclusion The breast lift is one of the commonly performed procedures in the US. It effectively treats saggy breasts, making them firmer and youthful. Many women wonder how their breasts will appear volume-wise after the breast lift. The breasts will experience some reduction in volume after the surgery, but the decrease will not be significant. Also, the change in breast volume does not result from a reduction in the size of the breasts but due to the enhancement of the breast profile.