Breast lift can be done with local anesthesia, but it’s not always recommended.
Breast lift is a procedure that tightens and lifts the skin of the breasts to make them appear firmer and perkier. It can also reduce the size of the areola, or the darker area around the nipple, to give you a smaller, rounder appearance.
The procedure is usually performed by a plastic surgeon or a cosmetic surgeon in his or her office. It takes about an hour and involves making an incision around the areola and then removing excess skin and fat from beneath it. The surgeon will then use sutures to tighten the muscle that lifts up your breast tissue, resulting in a more lifted appearance.
For some patients, breast lift can be done with local anesthesia alone—meaning no sedation is required—but this isn’t typical for all patients because it requires an extremely skilled surgeon who has done many procedures before. If you’re interested in having a breast lift with local anesthesia, make sure you ask your doctor about his or her experience performing this type of surgery before scheduling an appointment.
can breast lift be done with local anesthesia
If you are preparing for a breast lift, you may have questions about how the procedure will go. In many cases, we have found patients come to us, nervous about being put fully to sleep and seeking information on the possibility of their surgery being done under local anesthesia. While this may seem like a tempting option, it is important to know what you may be getting yourself into. Having performed countless successful breast lift surgeries, here is our perspective:
Understanding Local Anesthesia
If you are interested in having your surgery performed under local anesthesia, it is first important for you to fully understand what this means. With local anesthesia, only the surgical site is injected with medication. This means that while the breast area will have no sensation, you will be awake and aware for the entire procedure, which will likely take multiple hours. The drawback with local anesthesia is that there are limits to how much of this type of drug you can receive before reaching toxic doses. This can pose serious complications, considering the length of the surgery, and does not provide any relaxation for you during this time.
Understanding General Anesthesia
Under general anesthesia, you will be put to sleep and have no awareness of what is taking place during the surgery. While you are in this state, your vital signs are constantly monitored and your muscles are more relaxed–allowing for the surgeon to perform her job without any interference from your potentially resisting muscles.
Local Anesthesia Is Generally Not Advised
Due to the potential complications that can arise from local anesthesia, we generally do not advise this option for patients seeking a breast lift. At Beaux Arts Institute of Plastic Surgery, our priority is creating impeccable results that will far exceed your expectations. In order to do this, it is important to create a surgical environment that is most conducive to success.
That said, if you have concerns about the type of anesthesia that will be used during your surgery, we are more than happy to answer your questions. The best way to determine what kind of anesthetic will be best suited to your needs is to schedule a consultation. Dr. Nia Banks is a skilled and experienced surgeon who keeps her patients’ best interests at heart, so rest assured we would be glad to speak with you. If you live in the D.C. area and are ready to take the next step, do not hesitate to contact us.
Breast Lift Recovery and Healing
A breast lift, or mastopexy, is performed as an outpatient procedure under general anesthesia. The procedure typically lasts one to three hours. After one or two hours in the recovery room, the patient is discharged to home. Patients are instructed to relax, but bed rest is not necessary. In fact, we prefer that you move around some. You may eat anything you want right after surgery. You may shower that day or the next day. There is very little wound care needed.
The incisions are covered by strips of 1″ paper tape. There is a large clear plastic dressing over the lower half of the breast. All of this will be removed approximately 10 days after surgery. There are usually only one or two sutures that need to be removed. The rest are buried under the skin and will eventually dissolve. Drains are typically not necessary. A surgical bra is worn for four weeks around the clock. Patients typically are off work for three to seven days. There are no restrictions after three weeks postoperatively. It usually takes 6 to 12 weeks for the breasts to achieve their final shape.
As one of the main concerns with mastopexy is scar quality, we have a special protocol that we use for the breast scars. When you are seen 10 to 14 days after surgery, we will remove the paper tape that we placed on the incisions in the operating room. Then, we will apply a clear plastic dressing called Tegaderm to the scars. You will be instructed to leave this on as long as possible. We would like for you to use the Tegaderm for a total of three months. Usually it will require changing every three or four weeks. The Tegaderm applied to the scar at the fold beneath the breast may require changing more frequently than the Tegaderm applied around the nipple. We have found that the use of Tegaderm for three months after surgery significantly improves scar quality.