Treatment options for breast sagginess

Treatment options for breast sagginess

02nd Feb 2019


Breast sagginess is the condition defined by breasts which hang low on the chest wall, with the majority of mammary gland positioned under the inframammary fold and characterized by a lack of skin elasticity and vitality. Saggy breasts are a condition that affects more women than you might believe. Actually, a vast majority of women are confronted with this issue sooner or later in their lives. 

There is a multitude of factors that are known to cause breast sagginess, such as weight fluctuations, pregnancy, breastfeeding, and the natural aging process. Gravity is not your friend either when it comes to sustaining the youthful appearance of the breasts for longer.

The breast lift is the only efficient method that can be used to correct breast sagginess and enhance the appearance of the breasts permanently. In this article, we will discuss treatment options for breast sagginess.

Breast ptosis

The general recommendation is to keep a constant weight if you want to enjoy the beautiful shape of your breasts for as long as possible. Pregnancy and breastfeeding are other factors that can contribute to the early onset of breast ptosis, a condition that affects the appearance of the breasts and changes it permanently. However, breast ptosis is not only associated with these factors but also others that might seem insignificant at first sight such as wearing the wrong type of bra or not wearing a good quality sports bra when exercising. 

Breast ptosis affects different women in different ways. There are multiple levels of breast ptosis, and depending on the type of sagginess, the plastic surgeon will recommend one treatment option over the other. The evaluation of the level of breast ptosis is done in relation to the position of the nipple and areola complex to the inframammary fold. Another factor that is taken into consideration is how much volume of the breasts is positioned under the inframammary fold. A simple classification would be:

    Level 1 breast ptosis: The nipple and areola complex are on the inframammary fold;

    Level 2 breast ptosis: The nipple and areola complex are 1-2 cm under the inframammary fold;

    Level 3 breast ptosis: The nipple and areola complex are more than 3 cm under the inframammary fold and the nipples are pointing down. 

Aside from these three main categories, there is also pseudoptosis. This condition is characterized by a correct position of the nipple and areola complex but accompanied by an excess skin at the inferior pole of the breasts and a lack of volume on the upper pole of the breasts. 

Breast sagginess changes the position of the breasts on the chest wall, but it also affects their shape. This is the reason why saggy breasts can look like empty bags without a properly defined shape. 

Unfortunately, there are no “natural” methods to correct this imperfection. No cream, lotion or potion won’t be able to remove the excess skin and restore the beautiful appearance of the breasts. 

Treatment options for breast sagginess

There are multiple surgical plans that can be followed to improve the appearance of the breasts and correct breast ptosis. Here are the treatment options for breast sagginess offered by plastic surgery:

Breast implants

We only mention breast implants as a treatment option because patients need to understand what implants can do in relation to breast ptosis. Many patients interested in correcting breast sagginess tend to believe that implants are the only solution for their problem. In other words, they think they need to get implants and then their breasts will stop sagging. This is not true, and it can be quite dangerous in terms of aesthetic appearance for the patients to pursue getting implants instead of a breast lift. To understand why this is the case, let’s have a look at the structures of the breasts. 

The breast is made out of skin envelope, the underlying fat tissue, and the mammary gland. The breasts also have ligaments that sustain them high on the chest wall. When breast sagginess occurs, it is often the ligaments that become overstretched and the skin envelope that loses elasticity and becomes distended. This means that if we insert an implant in a saggy breast without first correcting the sagginess, the breasts will keep on being saggy. Moreover, the sagginess might be even more accentuated after implants are inserted, or the patient might even end up looking like she has two breasts on one side, depending on the placement of the implants. This, of course, is true in the case of severe sagginess.

A minor sagginess can be corrected with just the help of breast implants. In other words, if the nipple and areola complex is not lower than the inframammary fold, it can be enough to insert an implant for the breasts to look perkier and more elevated on the chest wall. However, choosing the right type of implants is extremely important. Overly large implants will accelerate breast ptosis, and the patient might end up with saggy breasts sooner than patients with smaller breasts.

Implants can be considered a treatment option for breast sagginess; however, this can be determined only by the plastic surgeon and after a thorough pre-operative consultation during which your level of breast ptosis will be diagnosed. 

Breast lift

The optimal treatment for breast sagginess is in a vast majority of cases the breast lift. The procedure is also known under the name of mastopexy and can be performed at any age. Even patients who are very young can undergo a breast lift if they have a fully developed mammary gland. The procedure is performed under general anesthesia and requires no longer than a few hours of hospitalization. 

Before the breast lift is performed, the patient will need to take blood tests, a pulmonary radiography, and also a mammography or a breast echography to allow the plastic surgeon to get a clear idea about the health condition of the patient and to rule out potential contraindications. 

The surgical techniques used for the breast lift are chosen depending on the level of ptosis and the initial condition of the breast tissues. During the procedure, the plastic surgeon will perform one or multiple incisions and eliminate the excess skin and re-center the mammary gland. 

The results of the breast lift are immediate; however, patients interested in the procedure should know that it can take up to one year or more for the final results to fully transpire. The breasts will be swollen and bruised after the procedure and other side effects can be encountered, but all of them are normal and will subside in time without additional treatment. 

Breast lift with implants

A procedure that is often performed nowadays is mastopexy with implants. When undergoing this procedure, the patient can not only correct the sagginess of the breasts but also improve their volume for a more harmonious appearance. After a breast lift with implants, the patient will have perkier, firmer breasts that are also bigger and fuller. It is very important for patients interested in mastopexy with implants to understand that after getting implants, additional procedures might be necessary to remove or remove and replace the implants. Moreover, there are also specific complications associated with the use of implants that can occur after a breast lift. 


Breast sagginess is a condition that affects the physical appearance of many women over time, and that can leave them with emotional or physical discomfort. To correct breast sagginess, plastic surgery offers multiple treatment options. Depending on the particularities of each patient, the goals after the surgery, and the level of breast ptosis, the plastic surgeon will recommend one treatment option after the pre-operative consultation. 

We can consider implants the first treatment option for breast sagginess; however, it is important for the patient to understand that this is a solution only for patients confronted with a minor level of breast ptosis. In other words, implants can make your breasts perkier and more elevated only if the nipple and areola complex is not lower than the inframammary fold and not a large volume of the mammary gland is positioned under this level. 

For more severe cases of breast ptosis, a breast lift can deliver impressive results. The breast lift can also be performed with breast implant surgery or a breast reduction, depending on the patient’s desires.


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