When you think of breast augmentation, implants are what come to mind. However, not everyone is comfortable with the idea of getting implants to enhance the volume of their breasts.
In that case, there are two options left: fat grafting and auto-augmentation breast lift. Here, we’ll discuss the latter, which uses existing breast tissue to change the shape of the breasts.
However, before deciding to get this surgery, you should know that it’s not suitable for everyone. Moreover, its results are comparable to breast augmentation with implants.
What Is Breast Auto-Augmentation?
In breast auto-augmentation, breast tissue below the nipple-areola complex is moved above it. The procedure is combined with a breast lift, which involves removing excess skin and tightening the remaining skin and tissues.
A breast lift with auto-augmentation allows the patient to have more fullness in the upper half of the breasts without having to use implants.
In this, essentially, a flap of breast tissue is separated from its surroundings so that it can be moved upwards. It’s left attached to the chest wall so that the blood flow isn’t severed (otherwise, you’d have dead tissue inside your chest, which can cause complications).
Just like with an implant, a pocket is created in the upper half of the breasts, and the tissue is placed there. This tissue will stay there permanently. You won’t have to replace it or redo it because the body won’t resorb it.
Who’s A Good Candidate For Breast Lift With Auto-Augmentation?
You’ll make a good candidate for auto-augmentation breast lift in the following instances:
- You have deflated, pendulous breasts after implant removal, pregnancy, breastfeeding or weight loss.
- You have sufficient tissue in the lower half of your breasts.
- You only want to enhance the upper half of the breasts (not in their entirety).
- You don’t want to dramatically increase the volume of your breasts (implants are best for that).
Ideally, patients should have completed their family before undergoing any kind of breast surgery. Also, you must hit your weight goal before you have this surgery.
How To Prepare for Auto-Augmentation With Breast Lift?
Before you come in for your surgery, you’ll have to make the following preparations:
- Discontinue any blood thinners.
- Refrain from smoking and drinking alcohol.
- Arrange for help with housework.
- Do meal-prepping for a week.
- Wear loose and comfortable clothes to the clinic.
- Make sure to remove any accessories that you’re wearing.
These things will only help you during recovery and prevent any delays in your surgery.
What Is The Procedure For Breast Auto-Augmentation?
Once you arrive at the clinic, you’ll be given general anaesthesia so that you don’t feel any pain. After it has kicked in, the surgeon will begin by making an anchor-shaped incision.
First, the loose, excess skin is removed, and the breast tissue is rearranged. From there, the augmentation process takes place.
The surgeon will rotate the tissue to the upper half of the breasts, inside a pocket (that’s either created or is already there from an old implant).
This flap of tissue is then stitched to the pectoralis muscle so that it stays in place. Sometimes, an internal mesh is also put in place to provide the tissue with further support.
The nipple-areola complex is also repositioned higher up, and the incisions are then closed with external stitches. The entire procedure takes around 2-4 hours.
For even more enhancement in the volume, some patients combine breast auto-augmentation with fat grafting.
What Is the Recovery & Aftercare For Breast Auto Augmentation?
It’s important that you rest for 2-3 days after the surgery. You will be prescribed certain medications (painkillers, antibiotics) so make sure to take them. You’ll also have to wear a surgical bra for support during recovery.
It might be a week or so before you can get back to work. However, this will depend on the nature of your job, which is why you should consult your surgeon about it. You also need to avoid driving for 1 week or so.
As far as exercising (including lifting anything heavy) is concerned, you need to avoid that as well for about 1-1.5 months.
Keep in mind that it can take a few months for most of the swelling to go down. You can see the final results of your procedure after that.
How Are The Results of Auto-Augmentation with Breast Lift?
Following a breast auto-augmentation, your nipple will be higher up and in the centre of your breasts. In general, the breasts will look perkier.
Also, the base of your breasts will be narrower than before, but the upper half will appear full. And these results will be permanent.
However, keep in mind that the surgery will leave scars because the surgeon had to cut into your skin. These can take 1-2 years to fade.
Still, different studies report high patient satisfaction with this auto-augmentation breast lift technique, so you can consider this instead of a traditional boob job.
What Are The Risks of Breast Auto-Augmentation?
Just like every other surgery, auto-augmentation with breast lift carries certain risks. For instance, it can cause:
According to a study published in Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, complication rates of breast auto-augmentation (after removal of an implant) with fat grafting are low.
Just make sure to follow the aftercare instructions of your surgeon to reduce the risk of these complications.
Patients who smoke or drink alcohol before and after surgery have their wound healing slowed down. This makes them more vulnerable to post-op complications.
What Is Breast Auto-Augmentation’s Cost?
In the UK, an auto-augmentation with a breast lift can cost you around £5,000-6,000. This is for the anaesthesia, operation theatre and the surgery itself. The consultation, medications, and aftercare will add to the total cost.
You’re unlikely to get this procedure on the NHS, so you’ll have to get it privately. And prices of clinics can vary depending on the location of the clinic, surgical technique and expertise of the surgeon.
The same’s the case with Turkey. However, there you can get this surgery for much cheaper due to differences in the cost of living and the exchange rate.
At a clinic in Istanbul, you can get breast auto-augmentation for around £1,800. After you add in the cost of hotels, transfers, medications, and aftercare, it still won’t cost you more than £2,500.
Many women get fearful of the potential complications of breast implants and look for alternatives.
While fat grafting is one, the problem with it is that some of that fat will be reabsorbed by the body. And you’ll likely need that procedure once again.
In that case, you can consider getting breast auto-augmentation but remember that you need to have enough breast tissue to be a suitable candidate for it.
Also, this surgery will not give you dramatic results. So, if you’re looking for something like that, you should get a traditional boob job instead.
In any case, it’s always a good idea to consult board-certified professionals. They’ll provide you with a suitable treatment plan based on your needs and expectations.
Reviewed and approved by Prof Dr Fuat Yuksel.
Is it possible to breastfeed after auto-breast augmentation?
Breast auto-augmentation should not affect your ability to breastfeed.
That’s because the surgery doesn’t involve cutting into the milk ducts, so you can breastfeed. But keep in mind that it can reverse the results of your surgery.
Is breast lift auto-augmentation more expensive than traditional breast lift?
In Turkey, breast auto-augmentation will cost you just as much as a traditional breast lift. However, the latter may cost more at a clinic in the UK.