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Lejour Lollipop Vs Anchor Incision for Breast Reduction & Lift

Common Incision Techniques used for Breast Reduction (Reduction Mammaplasty) and Breast Lift (Mastopexy) and the different scar patterns

Breast reduction (reduction mammaplasty) and breast lift (mastopexy) procedures are helpful to reduce neck and back pain and reshape the breasts.

The Le jour lollipop and anchor techniques are the two most common incision choices when it comes to breast reduction or lifting surgeries. But how do they compare? And, which one is the most suitable option for you?

Plastic Surgeons evaluate each patient independently to bring them the most suitable breast results possible. Your body shape, proportions, goals, and concerns are all considered when determining the practical breast reduction and lift technique for you.

Different Surgeons have different abilities and offer their preferred incision techniques.

Read more about Breast Reduction by Plastic Surgeons at Coco Ruby Clinic

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Read this article to learn more about both the lollipop and anchor techniques, and to find out which option is best for you!

What Are the Different Incision Techniques?

Your plastic surgeon has a range of different surgical technique options to pick from when performing your breast reduction and/or breast lift surgery. The final technique chosen will depend on your current breast anatomy, the amount of breast tissue and skin that needs removing, as well as your own personal aspirations. Some surgeons also only perform 1 technique.

Below are some of the surgical incision techniques implemented in breast reduction and breast lift procedures:

  • Crescent technique – Rarely used in Australia
  • Donut (Periareolar) technique – Used mostly in USA for saline implants
  • Lollipop technique (also called vertical or short-scar) – A technique with a vertical incision and periareolar incision
  • Anchor technique (also called inverted T or Robbins technique) – A technique with an anchor-shaped incision pattern

This article will focus on the lollipop and anchor techniques that surgeons commonly use in breast reduction and lift procedures as well as the difference between the two.

Lejour Lollipop Vs Anchor Incision Scar Technique for Breast Reduction & Lift Image Illustration

Lollipop Vs Anchor – Incision Shape

Lollipop Incision

The lollipop technique involves two incision lines;

  • The first is a circular incision cut around the border of your areola. The areola is the pigmented area around the nipple.
  • The second incision line goes down vertically from the lower edge of your areola to your inframammary fold (lower breast crease).

As the name suggests, the final incision pattern resembles that of a lollipop. It’s also sometimes referred to as the short scar technique. This makes it a common choice in Breast reduction and Breast lift procedures.

Anchor Incision

Unlike the vertical lift, the anchor incision also known as the inverted T involves 3 incisions. The first two incisions are similar to that of the lollipop lift. The third incision gives this approach its anchor name and shape. It runs along your inframammary crease.

Lollipop Vs Anchor – History

A number of techniques have been developed in the past decades, most promising results.

Here’s a list of some of the famous surgeons in the history of plastic surgery;

Madeline Le Jour

In 1925, Dr Lassus was the first to describe the vertical scar approach for breast reduction and breast lift procedures. At first, it was combined with a horizontal inframammary incision. The final incision was the anchor incision.

Dr Madeline Lejour, a Belgian plastic surgeon, altered the vertical approach to how it’s known today. She shortened the vertical incision line to remain above the inframammary fold and also eliminated the horizontal scar completely. The final incision was the lollipop incision – “The Lejour” – Dr Craig Rubinstein’s preferred!

Betsy Hall Findlay

Dr Betsy Hall Findlay made alterations to the vertical breast mammaplasty to preserve breast sensation and milk ducts. The result of this change was a different final result – the “Hall Findlay” approach. She proposed pedicle techniques not previously known to plastic surgeons to refine the vertical lift.

Robert Wise

In 1956, the key-hole-shape pattern of Robert Wise became the workhorse for breast reduction and lift incisions for many decades. It is still used as the base for most newly modified breast reduction and breast lift techniques nowadays.

The “Wise pattern” was an alteration to the anchor technique. It involved a periareolar incision, a vertical incision in the middle of the lower breast pole, and a curvilinear scar along the breast crease. This versatile technique provides predictable reliable outcomes in women with heavy breasts.

Thomas Robbins

The Robbins or Anchor technique is one of the most commonly performed reduction mammaplasty and mastopexy methods. It incorporates the inverted T pattern of Robert Wise with inferior pedicle resection. This method preserves the breasts’ blood supply, retains nipple and areola sensitivity, allows large breast reductions and lifts, as well as providing outcomes.

Plastic surgeons should be skilled in the various breast reduction and breast lift technique options, so they can accommodate the different circumstances of each patient. Ask your Surgeon.

Lollipop Vs Anchor – Who is an Appropriate Candidate

Both the vertical and inverted T methods can provide results. Especially in healthy women that are unhappy with their current large breast shape, and the painful neck, shoulder, and back symptoms that women can experience as a result.

But what sets lollipop and anchor technique candidates apart?

Common Lollipop Candidate

The suitable candidates for the lollipop lift or reduction are those who:

  • Are younger patients, with good skin quality
  • Have noticeable breast ptosis
  • Need a moderate breast reduction and lift
  • Wish for discreet scarring

Common Anchor Candidate

The anchor lift and reduction technique is typically chosen for those who:

  • Are older and with poor skin elasticity
  • Have very large heavy breasts with severe ptosis
  • Want the utmost degree of breast reduction and lifting
  • Don’t mind additional horizontal scarring

Lollipop Vs Anchor – Potential Risks and Complications

Despite the difference in the degree of invasiveness of each procedure, both Lollipop and Anchor incisions carry the same long-term risks. Here are some of the complications worth noting when undergoing reduction mammaplasty or mastopexy;

  • Nerve damage and change to breast sensation (tingling, burning, numbness…)
  • Infection particularly with an improper antibiotic regimen
  • Poor wound healing, especially if you’re a smoker or suffer from diabetes
  • Inability to breastfeed due to possible milk (lactiferous) ducts damage
  • Unfavourable scarring
  • Need for revisional surgery

All surgery contains risks, read more here.

Lollipop Vs Anchor – Recovery after Surgery

Breast reduction and breast lift, by means of a lollipop or anchor incision, are known for their smooth short recovery period.

In the first few days, you will experience notable soreness and discomfort. As a result, pain, bruising and swelling reach their pinnacle levels during this time. A week after your breast reduction and lift procedure, the majority of your postoperative symptoms will decrease significantly, and by 2 weeks post-surgery they will almost be gone.

It takes around 6 to 8 weeks to fully heal from your breasts reduction or breast lift surgery. The short scar lollipop technique’s recovery period is on the lower end of that spectrum. As there is less breast tissue and skin damage, and therefore faster-wound healing.

Regardless of whether your breast lift is done with the Lejour vertical approach or the inverted T, you should avoid any strenuous activity for an absolute minimum of 3 weeks post-surgery. Furthermore, you should always consult with your plastic surgeon and get the green light before your resume your exercise routine.

Lollipop Vs Anchor – Cost

It’s hard to put an exact price on any cosmetic procedure, regardless of the approach. There are several factors that can affect the cost of your procedure, for example;

  • Your breast anatomy
  • The extensiveness of your procedure
  • As well as, plastic surgeon and hospital fees
  • Geographic location also comes into play when determining the final cost.
  • And, other factors

Breast reduction and/or breast lifts are done through the lejour incision tend to need more skill and training, and thus are slightly more expensive. However, you should never price shop when it comes to your body.

Phone the clinic team for an estimate of costs.

FAQs about Lollipop vs Anchor Incisions & Scars

Below are some frequently asked questions about lollipop and anchor techniques in breast reduction and lift surgery;

What is the best technique for breast reduction and lift procedures?

  • What works for one patient, might not work well for another.
  • Currently, there’s no “best” technique for breast reduction and lift procedures, this is because each technique has its own set of advantages and disadvantages.
  • Consult your plastic surgeon for the best breast surgery technique option for you.

How big do breasts need to be to get a reduction?

  • If your large breasts are causing physical challenges, such as;
    • neck, shoulder, or back pain,
    • Or, if they are causing you emotional burdens you more than qualify for breast reduction surgery. There’s no need to be of a specific breast size.
  • Generally, the bigger your breast size, the more likely you will be to be eligible for Medicare or Health insurance coverage if you meet the criteria.

How many sizes can you go down in a breast reduction?

  • Depending on your goals and your plastic surgeon’s recommendation, you can more or less go down to any breast size.

Do breast reduction and lift last for a lifetime?

  • Breast reduction and lifts are cosmetic plastic procedures with long-term results. However, they are not impervious to weight fluctuations, pregnancy, menopause, or ageing. 
  • As a result, your breasts may regain some of their volume this may lead to revisional breast surgery in the future.
  • Breast mammaplasty via an anchor incision is less likely to undergo future changes.

Medical Sources for Lollipop Vs Anchor Incisions and Surgery

Finally, below are sources and more information if you would like to do further research.

Specialist Plastic Surgeons and ENT (Ear, Nose and Throat) Surgeon

With a wealth of experience and training, our Specialist Plastic and ENT (Ear, Nose and Throat) Surgeons are dedicated to best-practice patient care and education, customising Surgery for each and every patient to best meet their needs and desired surgical outcomes.

Dr Craig Rubinstein
Dr Broughton Snell
Dr Stephen Kleid
Dr Gary Kode

Specialist Plastic Surgeon MED0001124843

Dr Craig Rubinstein

Dr Craig Rubinstein is a Specialist Plastic Surgeon based in Hawthorn East, Melbourne. With over 20 years of surgical experience especially in all areas of Cosmetic and Plastic Surgery, but particularly in breast surgery. These include Breast Augmentation and Breast Reduction as well as Breast Surgery Revision.

Furthermore, he believes that surgical customisation, precision planning and technical expertise help him to provide optimal surgical outcomes for his patients.

Specialist Plastic Surgeon MED0001190266

Dr Broughton Snell

Dr Broughton Snell is a Specialist Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeon based in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. His training in Plastic Surgery took place in Australia and the United States of America (USA).

Dr Snell is a fully qualified specialist plastic surgeon having completed his Fellowship with the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons in plastic and reconstructive surgery.

ENT (Ear, Nose and Throat) Surgeon MED0001052799

Dr Stephen Kleid

Dr Stephen Kleid is an experienced Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) Surgeon (Otolaryngologist) based in Melbourne with a passion for Septo-rhinoplasty, Septoplasty, as well as, a strong interest in Rhinoplasty Revision.

Dr Kleid trained at Melbourne University, then completed surgical training at various hospitals including Royal Melbourne, Royal Children’s, The Eye and Ear and St Vincents. He worked as a surgeon at the University of Florida Medical school for further experience.

Specialist Plastic Surgeon MED0001405964

Dr Gary Kode

Dr Gary Kode is a Specialist Plastic Surgeon, with experience in Aesthetic and Reconstructive Surgery, as well as non-surgical treatments.

Dr Kode is a member of several organisations, including the Australian Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (ASAPS), The International Confederation for Plastic and Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgery, and he holds a Fellowship with the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons.

What to do next?

Our Patient Liaison Team can assist with any questions you may have when considering a procedure. You can send in an enquiry form below or call our Melbourne Clinic between 9 am – 5 pm Monday - Friday.

Disclaimer: Results depend on individual patient circumstances and can vary significantly. Results may also be impacted by a variety of factors including your lifestyle, weight, nutritional intake and overall health. Consult your Specialist Plastic Surgeon for details. This information is general in nature and is not intended to be medical advice nor does it constitute a doctor-patient relationship. Surgery risks and complications will be covered in detail during a consultation with your Surgeon.

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