Over time, a woman’s breasts change, losing the firm, rounded, plump look they had in the past. As the skin becomes thinner and less flexible, gravity causes them to sink lower on the chest wall. Pregnancy, breastfeeding, and weight fluctuations add to the problem. Thankfully, you can restore your breasts to a more youthful appearance with a custom Washington DC breast lift, or mastopexy.
What is a breast lift?
A breast lift, when performed by Dr. Christopher Chang, is a custom procedure. Each woman is living with a unique breast condition. Sagging skin may be removed to lift the breasts higher on the chest wall, the breast mound may be reshaped so it appears lovely and round, and the nipples relocated to the front of the mound.
View Breast Lift Before & After
Am I a candidate for a breast lift?
If you are unhappy with your breasts, and have any of the following aesthetic issues, you may be a candidate for a breast lift in Northern Virginia:
- Sagging breasts
- Breasts that appear flat or deflated
- Nipples low, or pointing downward
- Breasts no longer firm and rounded
- Heavy, pendulous breasts
- Breasts have dropped lower on the chest wall
What is the cost of a breast lift in Virginia?
As the procedure varies from person to person, the cost of a Northern Virginia breast lift differs from patient to patient. The procedure can cost in the range of $5,500 to $12,000. Some women may require only a very minor lift, while others require a more comprehensive surgery to reshape the breasts, relocate the nipples, and remove excess, stretched skin.
Where are the incisions placed in a breast lift?
The incisions for breast lift surgery will vary, based on the current condition of your breasts, and how much reshaping and alteration of tissue and skin is required.
Types of incisions
Anchor lift: Called an “anchor” lift due to the shape of the incisions, they are placed around the areola, vertically down the lower portion of the breast, and in the breast crease. This approach can produce the most extensive lift and may be appropriate for women with very severe sagging.
The incisions are placed around the areola and vertically down the center lower portion of the breast mound. Women with moderate sagging are candidates for this approach.
The incision is made around the entire areola. This incision placement is often used on women who choose to undergo a breast lift with augmentation.
The incision is placed around the upper half of the areola only. This approach is for very minor sagging and can be used in conjunction with an augmentation.
Breast lift recovery
The recovery time following a breast lift can vary slightly, as each patient heals at a different rate.
Carefully follow all post-operative instructions. The basics include:
- Take all prescriptions as ordered by Dr. Chang.
- Avoid any physical action that could put a strain on your incisions (bending, lifting, reaching)
- Try to sleep on your back during healing
- No vigorous physical activities for one to two weeks (including intercourse)
- Take frequent rests. Exercise by taking short, gentle walks to aid in circulation.
- No home chores such as vacuuming, sweeping, or other tasks that could put stress on the incisions.
- Arrange for another adult to assist you for the first few days.
- No lifting children or pets.
Recovery timeline: What to expect
Day of surgery
You will arrive early in the morning for your surgery, dressed in comfortable clothing, with a top that opens in front. You will be prepared for surgery and anesthesia administered.
Immediately after surgery
After your surgery, you will become alert in a recovery area. Once you feel well enough, you are free to return home to rest, under the care of another adult. You will be groggy and will likely spend the day sleeping. You will be wearing a compression bra. Most patients find the discomfort mild and may only need over the counter pain medication.
At the one-week mark, the swelling and bruising is starting to fade. The tight feeling of the breasts will be diminishing.
Swelling and bruising have significantly faded, and the incisions have healed. You may experience numbness in your nipples and the skin on your newly reshaped breasts. This is to be expected and improves with time. You feel more energetic and can go about your day as normal. and are starting to enjoy your new look.
Most patients can now return to exercise, but still must avoid putting stress on the upper chest area, so sports such as golfing or tennis are still restricted. The inner tissues are still healing, but your breasts are starting to look great, taking on their final shape.
At three months, the surgical scars are starting to fade. You feel comfortable with your new breasts and are free to wear underwire bras. The sensation has returned to nipples and skin in most cases.
At six months, you may rarely think about your surgery and your scars are fading. You are going about your life as usual, with one big change – your breasts now appear lifted, round, and youthful.
It may take up to a year for your incision scars to fade. Ensure you wear sunscreen if your breasts are exposed. Your reshaped, lifted breasts now appear natural and youthful. You are free to show them off with plunging tops or a bikini.
Risks and complications
The risks and complications include anesthesia risks, infection, excessive bleeding, poor healing, changes in sensation of the nipples or breasts, or uneven breast shape. It is imperative that a breast lift is performed by a board-certified plastic surgeon who uses the most advanced techniques along with health and safety protocols.
Why choose Dr. Chang?
Dr. Christopher Chang is a respected medical professional who is known for his artistry, skill, and precision in breast surgery. He achieved his bachelor’s degree from Harvard and advanced his education at NYU School of Medicine and in a six-year integrated general and plastic surgery residency at Yale, followed by a fellowship at Johns Hopkins University. His extensive education and experience have led to a reputation for excellence in plastic surgery.
Other breast procedures
Dr. Chang performs a range of breast surgeries, including:
- Breast augmentation to enhance breast size, resolve lost volume or create symmetry.
- Breast reduction surgery to create a more balanced, proportional shape and size to overly large breasts.
- Breast reconstruction to restore a natural-looking breast mound and nipple structure for women who have lost a breast or some portion of the breast in cancer treatment.
- Tuberous breast correction can be performed to resolve the appearance of this condition and create round, natural-looking, even breasts.
- Combined breast lift with augmentation can be performed to lift the breasts while adding volume.
Breast lift FAQDoes insurance cover a breast lift? What kind of anesthesia is used? When can I return to work? When can I do intense exercise again? How long does the surgery take? Can I drive home after surgery? When can I wear a bathing suit in public after?
Frequently asked questions
Q: Does insurance cover a breast lift?
A: Breast lift surgery is an elective cosmetic procedure and is not covered by insurance. However, when the breast lift is combined with breast reduction, a portion of the procedure may be covered.
Q: What kind of anesthesia is used?
A: The procedure may be performed with local anesthesia and intravenous sedation or under general anesthesia.
Q: When can I return to work?
A: Most patients feel well enough to return to work in one week, unless the duties of employment involve any vigorous physical actions such as lifting, reaching, or stretching.
Q: When can I do intense exercise again?
A: Most patients are given the okay to return to intense exercise after six weeks.
Q: How long does the surgery take?
A: The time in surgery varies but typically takes about three hours to complete.
Q: Can I drive home after my breast lift surgery?
A: You will not be allowed to drive after your surgery, both due to the after effects of anesthesia, and the need to avoid arm motions during healing.
Q: When can I wear a bathing suit in public after?
A: You should feel comfortable wearing a bathing suit at about four weeks. If you plan to swim, ensure you have been given the okay to do so from your plastic surgeon.
Q: When are my final results?
A: It takes time for the scars to heal, but you should see the final results within about two months, other than waiting for the incision scars to fade.
Q: When can I wear a real bra?
A: You should be able to wear a real bra after six weeks.
Q: Can I breastfeed after a breast lift?
A: A breast lift should not affect breastfeeding, depending on the procedure used. You may want to wait to undergo the procedure until you are done having children, as pregnancy and breastfeeding can impact the results of the surgery.
Q: When can I have sex after a breast lift?
A: You are restricted from any vigorous physical activity for several weeks – including sex. Most patients can engage in sex in about two weeks.
Q: Does breast lift surgery affect breast sensitivity?
A: Breast sensitivity can go through some changes after a breast lift in Washington DC, with numbness or lack of sensation, which typically returns over time.
"I have never felt so confident. Dr. Chang completely changed how I saw myself in the mirror. I was terribly self conscious of my nose from my youth and finally decided to go through with the surgery. Not only was it inexpensive compared to the other three doctors I contacted, the before and after pictures of patients were also much better looking than the others! The whole process of surgery and recovery was quick and pretty much painless. I would definitely recommend him to anyone wanting cosmetic surgery. It really made me a happier person." - Catherine M.
"My son was in a terrible accident with most of the bones in his face and skull broken... I don't know what I would have done without Dr Chang!! My son is fully recovered and back to his old self again. I love Dr Chang, he will be in my prayers for the rest of my life. Thank you!" - Elizabeth A.
"I cannot say enough about my surgery with Dr. Chang! I had full facial Rejuvenation including a facelift brow lift and upper eyelids done 4 months ago. I also had a chemical peel to my lower eyelids and mouth. They was barely any pain and I was back to work the next week! I am so thrilled and my friends are so impressed. I cannot say enough about my experience! He is both caring and an amazing surgeon! Thank you so much!" - Cathy W.
The entire experience and outcome was everything I hoped for and I cannot thank Dr. Chang enough! He is a true pro and I recommend 100% without reservation!" - Ashley R.
"I went to Dr. Chang to correct the damage done to my breasts from pregnancy and breastfeeding. He went above and beyond to make me comfortable and to explain exactly what the procedures (lift + implants) would entail. He was extremely responsive and truly understood the look that I was trying to achieve - full, natural for my frame, and with minimal scarring. I'm only two days out from surgery and I'm already loving my results. I am so glad that I chose Dr. Chang to restore my chest to its pre-baby appearance. I actually think they are going to be better than they ever were before I had kids!" - Emily L.