From Israel21c via Women’s Health News comes this new surgical procedure designed to help women fork out piles of cash and a world of pain for patriarchally-approved body shape: Minimally Invasive Mastopexy. Because we all have a disease, you see, called ptosis of the breasts. “Ptosis!” It sounds horrible, doesn’t it? Kinda like a cross between a sneeze and a phlegm-spit. You wouldn’t want to have ptosis in public. But now, the solution is here! And it’s “minimally invasive”, which sounds just super.
So, Adi Cohen and his merry followers plan to slice women’s chests open and insert silicone breast harnesses, suspending them from their ribs and connective tissue. “It’s like a normal external bra!”, they enthuse. Except, y’know, with blood and pain and complications and stuff.
Who are the first in line in the process of fatigue-testing and tissue-testing of these revolutionary ptosis-treatment devices? Pigs. Apparently there are a pile of sows in Israel walking around feeling empowered because they now have perky teats, despite having birthed and raised a passel o’ piglets.
And Cohen himself? Oh, he loves women. Look, some of his best friends are women!
He recalls discussing the MIM technique over Friday night dinner with friends.
“All the women said, ‘I want to be the first one!’ It was like a fire in the fields! Everyone was very enthusiastic about the idea,” he said. “The aesthetic market is growing rapidly; most women are willing to try things out – it’s becoming like a trend.”
Whereas in the past only older women wanted to reshape their bodies, today teen girls are open to augmentation treatments and breast-lifts added Cohen. “We’re not encouraging this trend, we are simply trying to minimize risk.”
He goes on:
“Our device is safer than breast surgery”
Pants on fire.
Edited to add: I can’t sleep, so I thought I’d add a few more bits and pieces to this post.
Here’s a study called “Mastopexy revisited: A review of 150 consecutive cases for complication and revision rates.” You need a subscription to read the whole thing, so I thought I’d just pick out one choice paragraph. Emphasis is mine.
“Ptosis” is derived from the Greek word “fall,” and is defined as the “abnormal lowering or prolapse of an organ or body part.” Ptosis of the breast is an increasingly frequent concern for many patients, because the media portrays women of all ages as having youthfully shaped breasts. While a significant number of women never have an elevated nipple-areolar complex, the effects of time and childrearing eventually result in descended breasts in most women. The degrees of ptosis have previously been categorized by Regnault.
And from emedicine:
While the prevalence of breast ptosis is difficult to estimate, the frequency of mastopexy clearly is increasing. In 1992, the American Society of Plastic Surgeons reported that fewer than 8000 mastopexies were performed. The 2004 report indicates that more than 98,000 mastopexies were performed in the United States alone.
Etiology is varied and can be due to several components but gravity seems to be a common factor. Younger patients are more prone to ptosis because of excessive breast size or thin skin, thus the intertwining of breast reduction and mastopexy procedures. Ptosis in middle-aged patients usually is due to postpartum changes; the breast skin is stretched during lactation or engorgement, and afterward the breast gland atrophies, leaving loosened skin. Finally, in postmenopausal patients, further atrophy, gravity, loss of skin elasticity due to age, and weight gain are factors in creating breast ptosis.
With time, relaxation of Cooper ligaments and dermal laxity cause descent of the breast tissue and NAC. Postpartum involutional changes exacerbate the laxity of the suspensory ligaments and skin envelope. To properly correct these changes, elevating the breast parenchyma is necessary. In addition, the redundant skin envelope must be removed and the NAC must be transposed.
A classification system has been suggested by Regnault and modified by numerous authors. The most commonly used system is as follows:
* Grade 1: Mild ptosis – Nipple just below inframammary fold but still above lower pole of breast
* Grade 2: Moderate ptosis – Nipple further below inframammary fold but still with some lower pole tissue below nipple
* Grade 3: Severe ptosis – Nipple well below inframammary fold and no lower pole tissue below nipple; “Snoopy nose” appearance
* Pseudoptosis – Inferior pole ptosis with nipple at or above inframammary fold; usually observed in postpartum breast atrophy
Uh, dudes? The prevalence isn’t “difficult to estimate”, it’s 100%. Every Earthbound human breast will change shape and travel south. As you later identify, the common factor is gravity. So what’s with the “abnormal” designation, the “pathophysiology” heading, and the clinical “grading” system?
Is “Snoopy-nosed Redundant Skin Envelopes” too long for a band name?
More discussion at Feministe.