Women go through many changes in our bodies during pregnancy and childbirth. It is very challenging to maintain the same volume in our chest and as we age, breasts tend to droop and shrink.
Main Causes of Saggy Breasts
The chest begins to droop/sag when the elasticity of the skin and mammary tissue decreases, causing the entire breast to sag and the nipple drops to just above the breast fold. The medical term for saggy breasts is 'breast ptosis'. The causes of saggy breasts can include aging, pregnancy, childbirth and diet. The good news is that saggy breasts can be improved by removing excess fat, mammary gland tissues, and skin.
However, since most breast augmentation information available online is about breast implant, many people often don't know how saggy breasts can be treated. Some may think that they can regain the volume just by inserting implants, but that's not always true. For those who are looking into procedure for saggy breasts, Eunogo spoke with Dr. Seo Il Beom from Marble Plastic Surgery in Seoul, Korea.
Photo: Dr. Seo Il Bum
According to Dr. Seo, the surgery to correct sagging breasts is called 'mastopexy'. The degree of breast ptosis is usually classified into four stages, and different surgical procedures can be applied to each stage. If the sagging is severe, the subcutaneous fat, mammary glands and stretched skin should be reduced, and you can choose from three types of incisions made along specific lines to minimize scarring, says Dr. Seo.
Dr. Seo adds "the type of incision you should get depends on whether the existing breast volume is reduced, maintained, or enlarged". If you want to get mastopexy as well as breast reduction at the same time, you should choose from the vertical incision or O-shaped incision. If both mastopexy and breast enlargement are performed at the same time, the method used has to allow for the removal of saggy skin as well as insertion of implants into the chest. For relatively smaller chest sizes and sagging that is not too severe, incisions are usually made on the areola (periareolar incision) and under the breast fold (inframammary incision) to resolve the sagging issue while simultaneously increasing the breast size with implants.
Mastopexy (Saggy Breast Surgery) Surgical Methods
1. Areola Incision Method
If the breast is not very voluminous, this method can be used. A circular incision is made around the edge of the areola, making it relatively unnoticeable.
2. Vertical Incision Method
This is the most common surgery method for severe cases of breast sagging. A vertical incision of 4 to 5 cm is made below the areola.
3. Under Breast Incision Method
This method is used for breasts that are fuller with a lot of sagging, as it allows for the breasts to be reduced to a greater extent and repositioning of the nipples.
Advice from Dr. Seo
Except for surgeries where breast reduction and mastopexy is done at the same time for oversized breasts, the volume of the chest will eventually decrease after mastopexy. Implant insertion is essential to fill the volume of the upper chest that is completely gone. That's why breast enlargement is as important as mastopexy!
Mastopexy involves cutting down the soft tissue to make the chest smaller, and increasing the soft tissue through the insertion of implants. It's a very difficult procedure because the doctor has to perform both surgeries at the same time. Recently, more older patients are wanting mastopexy, so more complex surgeries are required to correct the more severe sagging. For older patients, it is recommended that you consult professional medical staff to perform the surgery as more skills and experience are required compared to regular breast augmentation.