Plastic Surgery

Many people think of cosmetic procedures like face lifts and tummy tucks when they think of plastic surgery. But plastic surgery goes well beyond cosmetic procedures. Plastic surgery procedures can include procedures such as, repair of birth defects such as a cleft lip, repairing damage done by burns, and repairing effects of injuries or illnesses that result in disfigurement.

Palo Alto Rhinoplasty

In the U.S., plastic surgery specialization involves four years of training beyond medical school. Plastic surgeons sometimes do not get the respect that other medical specialties (like heart surgeons) have, but that is because many people don?t realize that plastic surgeons are involved in much more than making people look younger or prettier. They are also involved in repairing disfigurement from accidents or illnesses. In fact, some plastic surgeons don?t get into cosmetic procedures much, if at all.

Plastic surgeons sometimes do specialize in cosmetic procedures, and sometimes they specialize even more, perhaps concentrating on facial surgery or breast reconstruction after mastectomy. Board certified plastic surgeons with experience in cosmetic surgery are usually good choices for patients looking to have cosmetic procedures, particularly the more major types like face lifts and tummy tucks.

When it comes to minimally invasive cosmetic techniques like Botox and soft tissue fillers such as Restylane and Juvederm, any licensed physician can set up shop providing these procedures. It?s a very lucrative business: quick, fairly expensive, and insurance companies aren?t involved. However, getting these procedures done by someone other than a plastic cosmetic surgeon or a dermatologist can be risky.

Plastic surgery is definitely a lucrative career, particularly in times like these where cosmetic procedures are so common. But it is also much more than that. When a burn patient has successful skin grafts, or when a mastectomy patient has reconstructive surgery that allows her to get back to her normal activities, there is usually a very skilled plastic surgeon to thank for it.

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Breast Exam

Breast lift surgery, technically known as mastopexy, is used to correct what most people would call sagging breasts. Breast lift may be performed by itself or in conjunction with breast augmentation and the insertion of breast implants. Whether or not you need a breast lift and/or a breast augmentation can only be determined by a plastic surgeon’s exam. Your plastic surgeon will take specific measurements to determine where the nipple and areola are positioned relative to the breast crease (inframammary fold). Your plastic surgeon will use those measurements to determine if fullness can be restored with breast implants alone or if a breast lift is required to help restore a youthful appearance.

You May Want Breast Lift If?.
Typically, you may benefit from a breast lift if you have one of the following conditions:

* You are bothered by the feeling that your breasts sag, have lost shape and/or volume
* Your breasts have become elongated
* Your nipples fall below the breast crease
* Your nipples and areolas point downward
* You have stretched skin and enlarged areolas
* One breast is lower than the other

Types of Breast Sag
Before you read about the types of breast lifts, it good to know a little about which conditions might actually require a breast lift! Plastic surgeons generally identify 3 different conditions that most people would label “sagging breasts.” The conditions are:

* Ptosis
* Empty Sac Syndrome
* Pseudoptosis

Usually Ptosis is the only condition that warrants a breast lift. The simple insertion of breast implants will restore youthful fullness to your breasts in most cases of Empty Sac Syndrome and pseudoptosis. If you’d like to learn more about each condition, please read our page on Types of Breast Sag. This page explains each condition and how it is typically corrected.

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Types of Breast Lift (Mastopexy)
Your plastic surgeon may determine that you require a breast lift to restore your youthful appearance. If so, there are several differnt types of breast lift with which you should be familiar. Which type of breast lift is right for you generally depends on the degree of ptosis exhibited by your breasts.

Crescent Breast Lift
Also known simply as a crescent lift or nipple lift, this is a simple breast lift that corrects mild (grade I) ptosis. Your plastic surgeon will remove a crescent shaped piece of tissue above your areola. He/she will then raise your nipple to a higher position.

Benelli Breast Lift
The Benelli breast lift is also known as a donut mastopexy, circumareola breast lift and apex lift. The Benelli is typically considered less invasive than other types of breast lifts. It will correct mild to moderate ptosis (grade I or II). Your plastic surgeon will remove a donut-shaped piece of tissue from around the areola then re-attach the remaining tissue to the areola.

Vertical Mastopexy Breast Lift
Also known by the names lollipop breast lift, LeJour lift, and modified Benelli, the vertical mastopexy provides more lift than the Benelli for those with moderate (grade II) ptosis. Your plastic surgeon will remove a donut-shaped piece of tissue just like in the traditional Benelli breast lift. In addition, your plastic surgeon will make a straight incision from under the areola to the breast crease. The vertical mastopexy provides more lift for than the Benelli, but less than the full mastopexy discussed below.

Full Mastopexy Breast Lift
The full mastopexy breast lift is also known as an anchor lift or inverted-T. This breast lift will correct severe grade III ptosis. Your plastic surgeon will make an anchor-shaped incision that starts at the base of the areola and travels to the bottom of the breast, where it meets the ribcage. Your plastic surgeon then cuts out a crescent-shaped piece of skin right above where the breast meets the rib cage. He/she will remove and re-position your nipple so that it sits in a more youthful position.

Breast Exam