Should I get a breast augmentation to correct tuberous breasts?
Advice CentreBreast SurgeryBreast Lift

Should you worry about breast lift risks in recovery?

Published by Elena Prousskaia Elena Prousskaia
Should I get a breast augmentation to correct tuberous breasts?
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The possible benefits of the breast lift far outweigh the risk of a complication. Sagging breasts as a result of age, weight loss or pregnancy can severely affect self-esteem and breast surgery helps restore body confidence. There are alternatives to breast uplift such as a support bra, mini lift or breast augmentation surgery but none will give the perfect result.

The breast lift is the only way to permanently address breast sagging and a loss of volume simultaneously, but many are concerned by the possible side effects. We explore the types of complications and how much of a risk they pose. You’ll find it reassuring that severe complications are extremely rare and most women experience a smooth breast lift recovery.

Possible risks of breast lift surgery

Although surgical complications are infrequent, no plastic surgery is free from risk. The breast lift procedure involves removing excess skin and breast tissue and remodelling the breast size and shape. In addition, patients will usually either undergo a breast augmentation or a breast reduction surgery. The procedure is relatively extensive so the risks are important to consider:

  • Scarring (possible keloid scar) – surgical technique and biology mainly contribute to the appearance of scars.

  • Bleeding – from the incision sites is unlikely but usually not a sign of something serious

  • Swelling – expect swelling for several weeks into recovery

  • Infection – during recovery at the incision sites or from the surgical procedure itself

  • Implant displacement – smooth implants may be more likely to shift than textured ones

  • Asymmetry

  • haematoma/seroma – blood or fluid build-up is not usually dangerous and goes away on its own

  • Implant rupture

  • Capsular contracture – Scar tissue forms around the breast implant and can become hard

  • Sensation changes

  • Tissue necrosis – in rare instances, compromised blood supply can lead to tissue death

  • Slow healing – those with underlying conditions may experience slow healing at the incision sites

  • Challenges with breastfeeding

  • Reaction to anaesthesia – anaphylaxis or anaesthesia awareness are extremely rare complications but can be serious. Notify your surgeon if you have a history of anaesthesia reactions.

  • DVT – deep vein thrombosis (blood clot)

All patients have a follow-up appointment a week after surgery to let the body heal and ensure there have been no plastic surgery complications. If you experience severe pain, swelling or fever that can’t be managed with pain medication, contact your plastic surgeon within 24 hours, in case of an infection. If any side effects become unbearably uncomfortable or painful, get in touch with your plastic surgeon.

How common are breast lift complications?

The vast majority of cosmetic procedures pose no significant risk however, we believe it’s essential to be transparent about the possibilities of a complication. Some side effects are very rare, others are more common. Thankfully any more common side effects are benign and/or temporary. Explore the breast lift risks according to frequency and severity below – cosmetic side effects are highlighted in bold.



Extremely rare

Low severity


  • Bleeding

  • Sensation changes (usually temporary)

  • Seroma

  • Haematoma

  • Breastfeeding complication

    • Keloid scars

    • Asymmetry

    • Implant displacement

    • Capsular contracture

    Moderate severity
    • Poor wound healing

    • Mild infection

    • Implant rupture

    High severity
    • Severe infection

    • Reaction to anaesthesia

    • Necrosis

    • DVT

    Although there are risks, the most common ones are low severity and the most severe breast lift risks are extremely rare. Some rare side effects can have a cosmetic impact such as keloid scarring (raised, discoloured and hardened scars), asymmetry, implant displacement and capsular contracture. World-leading plastic surgeons at Elena Prousskaia’s clinic will ensure you have the best chance at healing flawlessly.

    Is the breast lift risky?

    Like all surgical procedures, the breast lift comes with risks. This procedure involves a significant breast reconstruction which distorts the breast tissue more than just a breast augmentation. Some common side effects may be more apparent with the breast lift and breast reduction. However, you will always be made aware of the risks of the procedure before going ahead.

    There are always risks of implant problems if you choose a breast augmentation, however, your risks are reduced if you choose an implant-free correction.

    A specialist plastic surgeon will reduce the risk of your plastic surgery as much as possible and ensure the final result is the best possible outcome.

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    Breast uplift patient –
    my anxiety about the procedure, risks and recovery had made me reluctant…Dr Elena always explained things with such clarity and honesty…She’s a fantastic doctor and has given me fantastic breasts

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    Pros and cons of the breast lift

    There are life-changing benefits to breast lift surgery – you already know this or you wouldn’t consider this cosmetic surgery. However, it’s always useful to compare the advantages and disadvantages before making a decision.



    • Restore body confidence

    • Achieve youthful breasts

    • Eliminate sagging

    • Decrease or increase breast size

    • Improve symmetry

    • Improve breast fullness

    • Achieve natural-looking breasts

    • Natural-feel breast implants

    • Market-leading implants (Mentor)

    • World-leading surgeon

    • Invisible scarring

    • Nipple revision (if necessary)

    Most of our patients have no issues with their cosmetic surgery and achieve the best result they could have ever dreamed of. If you are concerned about any of the possible side effects or complications, speak to Ms Prousskaia or book a consultation appointment.

    Frequently Asked Questions

    Does a breast lift increase the risk of cancer?

    A cosmetic procedure will not increase your risk of developing breast cancer. Some types of silicone breast implants could be associated with additional risks of side effects. However, we only use the highest-quality silicone elastomer implants – which are completely biologically inert.

    How long do the results of a breast lift last?

    The results of the surgery are permanent; you can expect the results to remain the same for decades. However, it’s normal for breast skin to lose elasticity with age and for breasts to lose volume. The best way to maintain your results is to avoid significant weight fluctuations.

    What increases the risk of breast lift complications?

    A few things can increase your risk of a surgical complication however, your surgeon will never recommend you proceed if your risk is significantly heightened. These additional risk factors include:

    • Being overweight or obese

    • Being underweight

    • Having a heart or circulation problem

    • Having diabetes

    • Being a heavy smoker

    • Having a compromised immune system

    What to read next


    • Mayo Clinic – Breast Lift

    • Breast Lift Risks and Complications – Toronto Cosmetic Clinic

    • What are the risks of breast lift surgery – American Society of Plastic Surgeons

    • Silicone elastomer is biologically inert