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Postoperative scarring is a major concern for many people considering a cosmetic procedure, and breast lift surgery (mastopexy) is no exception. Unfortunately, as with any type of treatment that involves incisions, some extent of scarring is an unavoidable side effect of mastopexy. That being said, great care and meticulous surgical technique can be employed by the plastic surgeon to help minimize the final appearance of scars on the breasts.

At my practice, I offer three incisional patterns for breast lift surgery, and the particular method utilized will depend on the specific needs and goals of the patient. The first scar pattern I perform requires an incision to be made around the nipple-areolar complex, which is the least invasive approach of the three. As a result, it is mainly used for patients who have very mild breast drooping and minimal excess skin. The second technique – known as the “lollipop” pattern – also involves an incision made around the nipple-areolar complex, though it then continues vertically down the underside of the breast to the inframammary crease. This method is generally reserved for individuals who have a moderate amount of breast sagging and extra skin. Lastly, the third pattern is exactly like the lollipop incision, but once the incision reaches the inframammary crease, it extends horizontally along the fold. This is known as an “anchor” incision, and it is usually employed for women who have significant breast drooping and skin laxity.

Regardless of which technique is used, the good new is that breast lift scarring tends to fade with time and can typically be concealed by the majority of underwear and bathing suit varieties. Furthermore, the results of a mastopexy tend to be so rewarding that most patients claim the rejuvenated appearance of their breasts far outweighs any presurgical reservations or worries they had about scarring.

Tiffany McCormack, MD, FACS