Breast augmentation is a surgical procedure aiming to increase the size and improve the form of a woman’s breasts for a number of reasons such as:
- To improve her figure in case she feels, for personal reasons, that her breasts are small.
- To restore breast volume lost after pregnancy.
- To balance a difference in size between two opposing breasts.
- As reconstructive procedure after a mastectomy.
Your bra cup size could increase by one or two sizes after a silicone breast implant is placed behind each breast.
Do not hesitate to ask your surgeon any question concerning the procedure.
The best candidates for breast augmentation
While breast augmentation can enhance your look and boost your self-confidence, it will not create the perfect image. Before you decide to undergo such an operation think carefully what your expectations are and make sure to discuss them thoroughly with your surgeon.
Best candidates for breast augmentation are women who seek improvement, not perfection. If you are healthy and realistic in your expectations, you are a good candidate.
Types of breast implants
A breast implant is a silicone case containing silicone in a more malleable form (silicone gel?).
The safety of silicone breast implants is now a given fact. Thorough research in the E.U. and the U.S.A. has not succeeded in connecting silicone breast implants with breast cancer or any other disease. Tales recounting incidents of “exploding silicone implants on a plane” are, for modern implants, just science fiction.
What will be the size of the implant?
The size of the implant is calculated by evaluating the body features of the patient. These calculations are based on the “High Five” system of the world renowned plastic surgeon John Tebbetts, a system tested on more than 5000 cases, so the implant will fit perfectly to your body.
Every operation carries risks
Breast augmentation is a relatively simple procedure. However, like in every surgical procedure, there are possible risks and complications. The most common complication is the formation of a capsule of gradually tightening scar tissue around the implant. This formation puts pressure on the implant and you might feel your breast hardening. There is no way of knowing in advance on which patient this situation will occur. The use of modern implants and the correct surgical procedure minimizes this risk. The appropriate treatment involves surgery. The capsule of tight tissue is removed and the implants are repositioned in place.
Some women report hypersensitive or numb nipples after surgery. These symptoms usually disappear in a few weeks. There is no proven effect of breast implants on fertility, pregnancy or breast feeding.
It is more than certain that breast implants are not connected with breast cancer. When having a mammography, it is very important to tell your radiologist that you have breast implants to help him take the necessary precautions to depict your breasts correctly.
The majority of women undergoing the operation do not suffer from the above mentioned complications. Nevertheless, it is very important to know the possible complications of breast augmentation before proceeding to surgery.
Arranging your operation
Your surgeon will evaluate the state of your health and will explain thoroughly which of the available techniques are the most suitable, according to the shape and condition of your breasts and your skin tone. If your breasts are lax also, he might recommend a breast lift.
Make sure to be honest in informing him if you smoke or take any medication or any food supplements, homeopathic or not.
Your surgeon shall provide you with information concerning the anesthesia you will receive and the hospital where the procedure will take place. Most health insurance plans do not cover the cost of breast augmentation because it is not considered a necessary medical procedure.
Preparation for surgery
Your surgeon shall provide you with specific instructions for your operation regarding what to eat & drink, smoking, taking or not certain vitamins and medication.
Make sure there is a friend or member of the family to drive you back home after the operation is over and the doctor discharges you from the hospital
Where does the procedure take place?
Breast augmentations take place in hospitals. There is no need for hospitalization and later that day you should be able to return home.
Breast augmentations are performed under general anesthesia.
Incisions are either located on the skin fold under your breast or around the areola. Every possible effort is made to place the incisions in concealed areasof the body in order to minimize visible scars.
Your surgeon will create a “pocket” to place the implant either directly behind the breast or under the pectoral muscles.
The procedure usually takes a little more than an hour. The sutures are covered with gauzes and a bandage is placed over the breast.
After the operation
You might feel tired for 24 or 48 hours after surgery. Your surgeon will prescribe medication to take care of any possible feeling of pain.
After a few days the gauzes are removed and you will have to wear a sports (wireless) bra for as long as your surgeon prescribes (usually a month).
Sutures are removed after 10 to14 days. Swelling subsides gradually within a month.
Back to everyday activities
You will be able to return to office-based work after a few days, always depending on the necessary level of activity.
Make sure to follow your surgeon’s instructions regarding the time when you can resume exercising or the return to your regular activities. Your breasts might be sensitive to direct contact for two to three weeks, so make sure you avoid it.
For at least six weeks, scars will be more hard and red than the rest of your skin. Then they will start to soften and fade until only a thin white line will be visible. After breast augmentation, it is essential to inform the radiologist performing a mammography that you have silicone breast implants.
Your new look
Many women find the results of breast augmentation very satisfactory and their self-confidence is boosted considerably. Your decision to undergo breast augmentation is something very personal, and some people might not be understanding. It is very important how you alone feel about it. The operation is considered successful only if you have achieved your personal goals.