Breast Augmentation, Breast Lift, or Both?

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Breast enhancement procedures are more popular than ever—and for good reason. A breast lift or breast augmentation at our Washington, DC-area practice creates noticeable, age-defying results.

But sometimes, patients are unsure of which surgery option is best for them. In this blog post, we’ll outline the benefits of each procedure and help guide you through this important choice.

What Is the Difference Between Breast Augmentation and a Breast Lift?

If you’ve spent time researching breast enhancement procedures, you’ve likely read many questions from women asking if breast implants alone can create a lifted appearance. This is understandable because most patients would prefer to avoid the incisions of a breast lift. Implants, however, are designed to add volume and won’t lift sagging breasts. In fact, if a woman’s breast skin has lost its elasticity, getting breast implants without a lift will worsen the breasts’ appearance.

Who Gets Breast Augmentation?

There are actually a number of reasons for getting breast implants. At our plastic surgery practice near Washington, DC, breast augmentation patients often want to restore volume to breasts that look “deflated” after pregnancy. Other women may have uneven, or asymmetrical, breasts and want implants to create a more balanced look. And, of course, many patients with naturally or disproportionately small breasts get breast implants.

Breast augmentation involves adding implants directly under the breast tissue or behind the chest muscle. This placement creates a flattering, more feminine appearance and can boost a woman’s confidence.

Although breast augmentation can increase size and fullness, it cannot “fill up” sagging skin or create a perkier appearance. Most surgeons don’t recommend placing an implant into a sagging breast for this reason.

Who Gets a Breast Lift?

A breast lift removes loose, excess skin and reshapes breast tissue, making breasts appear more youthful and perky. These issues are often caused by significant weight loss, breastfeeding, or age. The surgery is performed by tightening lax tissue and repositioning the breast higher along the chest wall. It can also have the added benefit of correcting neck or back pain caused by sagging.

Breast lifts can perk up droopy breasts, but the surgery cannot add volume or make the breasts appear bigger. In fact, many women report that a lift can make their breasts appear slightly smaller afterward.

Can You Combine Implants With a Breast Lift?

Many women looking into breast enhancement wish to fix multiple issues at once. These problems—such as breasts appearing both saggy and “deflated” after breastfeeding—often overlap between the two procedures. Undergoing a breast lift with implants can make the body appear instantly more youthful. It creates a lifted shape and increases breast size.

Combining a breast lift with a breast augmentation is also part of a Mommy Makeover. Many women choose this procedure for more comprehensive body contouring results. There is also the added benefit of the surgery having only a single recovery time instead of two.

Plastic surgery is always a very personal choice, and many different breast enhancement options can create beautiful results. By learning more about both procedures and talking over options with your doctor, you can choose the treatment that best fits your lifestyle and aesthetic goals.

Browse the before-and-after photo gallery to see real results from our own patients. If you have any more questions, please request a consultation using the online form or call (703) 560-2850 (Annandale, VA) or (301) 652-7700 (Chevy Chase, MD).

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