Augmentation, Reduction or Lift? – Your Breast Surgery Questions Answered

breast-aug-emailHave you been contemplating breast surgery? Whether you are considering breast augmentation (enhancement), breast reduction or breast lift surgery, it is important to understand the full extent of the procedure.

During our live chat on Thursday, November 17th, hosted by Emory Aesthetic Center’s plastic surgeon, Dr. Felmont Eaves, we answered questions about the different types of breast surgery options available. Dr. Eaves discussed what to expect during surgery and the recovery process. He also gave advice on choosing the right plastic surgeon to obtain the natural looking results you desire.

The response was so great that we had a few questions we were not able to answer during the chat so we will answer them below for your reference. A full list of questions and answers can be found on our chat transcript. You can also visit for a full list of services and treatments offered by the Emory Aesthetic Center.

Question: Do you typically do a reduction and a lift at the same time?

Dr. Eaves: Yes, a breast reduction always includes a breast lift, but you can lift without reducing if a reduction is not needed.

Question: If I get breast implants now, will I likely need a lift down the road?

Dr. Eaves: You may or may not. Many women with breast implants never need a lift, although it might be that after a decade or two that the extra size could contribute to the breast becoming more droopy. A lot of it will be related to how much breast tissue and the elasticity of the breast skin at the time of augmentation. It is certainly something to discuss at the time of consultation.

Question: Hi Dr. Eaves, I am set for a consultation in a few weeks, but am not sure which option to have – a breast lift (BL) or breast reduction (BR). My breast size is a 34F and I am a medium body frame with small bulge on the lateral aspect of my breast. Not sure if I can live with the post scarring from the breast reduction. Do you think for the best cosmetic look I would be a good candidate for periareolar BR or would a BL be better?

Dr. Eaves: In thinking through your individual circumstance, it is important to remember that a reduction always comes with a lift – that is just part of it. If a patient needs a lift, that lift can be done alone with no change in breast size, or the breasts can be reduced (a little or a lot, depending on what is needed), or the breast can even be augmented. The one thing is that – in general – a periareolar reduction or mastopexy is often ill-advised, unless the deformity is absolutely minimal. Although it sounds great to have a smaller scar, in reality that periareolar scar often looks very abnormal if trying to do any significant lifting or reduction, so that both the scar and breast shape will be poor. Be cautious – except in very limited circumstances, a peri-areolar only approach can be problematic.


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