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What to Expect During Breast Lift Recovery

By Dr. Suzanne Yee on December 09, 2014


Firm, full, and perky breasts on a female patientThe shape, size, and position of the breasts can be affected by a number of factors. Changes in weight, pregnancy, nursing, loss of skin elasticity, and aging can all markedly alter the appearance of the bust line. A breast lift repositions the breasts to restore a perky, youthful appearance. By removing excess tissue and moving the breasts to a higher position on the chest wall, the overall shape of the breasts can be improved, providing many patients with the bust line they desire. However, before the full results of breast lift surgery can be realized, the body will need time to heal. Here, we prepare our Little Rock patients for what to expect during breast lift recovery.

Side Effects

Side effects are a normal result of a breast lift procedure. While the intensity and duration of side effects may vary from patient to patient, most patients can expect to experience the following side effects to some degree:

  • Nausea from anesthesia
  • Fatigue and grogginess
  • Bruising
  • Swelling
  • Pain and discomfort
  • Itchy, tight feeling in the chest area
  • Numbness around the breasts and/or nipples

Pain medication will be prescribed to help patients maintain a degree of comfort during recovery. The majority of these side effects will greatly improve during the first week or two of recovery, with most resolving completely by three to four weeks after surgery. Swelling, however, will improve, but is likely to linger for a few more weeks, with many patients experiencing swelling up to six or eight weeks after the breast lift procedure.

Recovery Tips

Although side effects of breast lift surgery cannot be prevented, we do provide patients with tips that can be helpful in promoting a comfortable and timely recovery. Below are some important post-surgical tips that should be followed by patients:

  • Wear compression bandages or garments as instructed (these garments are typically worn for up to three months after breast lift surgery)
  • Use pain medication as prescribed and do not wait until pain is intense or out of control
  • Remain semi-reclined while sleeping to minimize swelling
  • Reduce salt intake and stay well hydrated
  • Walk as frequently as possible, but avoid more strenuous exercise
  • Arm movements will be limited during recovery and it is important to avoid lifting, pushing, or pulling, as this can put strain on the breasts and the incision sites
  • Keep all scheduled post-operative appointments with Dr. Yee so that she can monitor how healing is progressing

Breast Lift Results

The results of breast lift surgery will not be immediate. Side effects such as bruising, swelling, and scars may make it difficult to imagine what the breasts will look like once recovery is complete. However, patients should be patient and rest-assured that, as side effects subside, surgical results will become more noticeable. Most patients begin to notice a perkier bust line and improved breast shape after surgery, although it may take up to six months for final results to be obvious.

Contact Us

Cosmetic surgeon Suzanne Yee believes that everyone deserves to look and feel their best. Cosmetic surgery can enhance your natural beauty and help you realize your aesthetic goals. If you are interested in learning more about our cosmetic services, contact us at your earliest convenience. We look forward to hearing from you!

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Love Dr. Yee! She is very caring and patient, and she answered any questions I had. She has a very knowledgeable and friendly staff as well. Highly recommend her. Best of the best!

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