Most patients undergoing breast surgery are concerned about swelling and pain during recovery. As part of your pre-operative consultation, plastic surgeons like Dr. Edward S. Kole will inform patients about the recovery process for their procedure and what to expect in terms of pain, bruising, and swelling and scarring. Still, each patient’s operation is a unique and each patient’s experience and the degree of pain and swelling can vary greatly depending on the patient. Dr. Kole has described below what patients can generally expect after their breast lift surgery, and has compiled a list of tips to reduce swelling and discomfort after surgery.

After breast lift surgery at The Kole Plastic Surgery Center, patients will be required to wear a light compression bra garment to help reduce swelling and keep the tissue and skin in from moving around, in order to maximize proper healing. After breast lift surgery, Dr. Kole notes that it is especially important to wear these compression garments in order to minimize sagging and stretching of the breasts (from the weight of the swelling) in the immediate post operative period in order to maintain the long-term results of the mastopexy. This compression bra should be born for the first two weeks after surgery, and many patients elect to wear this bra longer because it is so comfortable-even after the patients resume their normal daily function.

After surgery, patients feel a mild to moderate amount of pain and discomfort, and can be prescribed pain medication which is typically only used for the first 1-2 days after surgery. After the initial few days, most patients only use Tylenol for a minimal amount of pain and discomfort.

Dr Kole routinely DOES NOT place drainage tubes during the surgery. Additionally, breast lifts that were done using periareolar incisions (incisions that cut around, lift and elevate the areola) will result in minor pleating or puckering around the incision after surgery. This pleating will resolve itself within 1-2 weeks time and will improve when the internal sutures dissolve. Most if not all sutures are dissolvable which reduces or eliminates the discomfort of removal and does not leave “track marks”.

To reduce swelling after surgery, Dr. Kole suggests:

  • Sit and sleep in an elevated position until swelling has reduced. Using a wedge pillow can help in remaining elevated during sleep.
  • Ice the swelling area gently for the fist 48 hours, 20 minutes on and 40 minutes off. Make sure to wrap cold compresses in a towel, never place ice packs directly on the skin.
  • Wear your compression garment; it improves circulation, which reduces swelling.

For more information about the recovery after your breast lift surgery, Dr. Kole will address your specific procedure during your consultation and prepare you for what is to come during your breast lift surgery. To schedule a private complimentary consultation with Dr. Kole to discuss your concerns, please call us at 215-315-7655.