Breast enlargement, otherwise known as breast augmentation, enhances the body contour of a woman who is dissatisfied with her breast size. This procedure can also correct a reduction in breast volume following pregnancy or significant weight loss. Noticeable imbalances in breast size and some developmental breast abnormalities may also be improved by breast augmentation. Proper placement of implants by Dr Sadove will enhance the breasts and improve the balance and proportions of a woman’s figure. This can increase self-esteem, bolster confidence and improve self-image. In situations where there is excessive sagging and drooping of the breast tissue, a simultaneous breast lift may be required. The newest implant shapes now available can lift the breast more than in the past.
Breast augmentation patients report a high level of satisfaction. In a recent report by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, 98 % of woman undergoing Breast Augmentation surgery reported that their results “met or exceeded their expectations.” Breast Augmentation was the #1 cosmetic surgery performed in 2013.
Breast implants are most commonly placed through a small incision in the crease at the base of the breast. Women may choose to have saline or silicone implants which are placed above or below the muscle depending upon each patient’s individual needs and preferences. All options will be thoroughly discussed at your evaluation and the doctor will recommend the best solution for you.
Breast Augmentation surgery will typically be performed at our outpatient surgery center, The Surgical Pavilion at North Florida Regional Medical Center. You will be placed under a very light general anesthesia and the surgery typically lasts approximately 1.5 hours. Patients are able to go home the same day after the procedure. Most patients return to normal activity within a week, however heavy aerobic or strenuous activity is not recommended for 3-4 weeks. During this time, you will be placed in a surgical bra to ensure ultimate comfort and support if you are larger breasted. You will be given pain medication for your comfort at home for the first 1 week. Restrictions and any limitations will be fully detailed for your procedure.
You will be evaluated several times during the year following surgery.
Why Breast Augmentation?
Enhancing your appearance with breast augmentation
If you are dissatisfied with your breast size, augmentation surgery is a choice to consider. Breast augmentation can:
- Increase fullness and projection of your breasts
- Improve the balance of your figure
- Enhance your self-image and self-confidence
What it won’t do
Breast augmentation does not correct severely drooping breasts. If you want your breasts to look fuller and to be lifted due to sagging, a breast lift may be required in conjunction with breast augmentation. Modern implants are now able to give the breast a significant lift.
Breast lifting can often be done at the same time as your augmentation or may require a separate operation. Dr Sadove will assist you in making this decision.
Is it right for me?
Breast augmentation is a highly individualized procedure and you should do it for yourself, not to fulfill someone else’s desires or to try to fit any sort of ideal image.
Breast augmentation may be a good option for you if:
- You are physically healthy
- You have realistic expectations
- Your breasts are fully developed
- You are bothered by the feeling that your breasts are too small
- You are dissatisfied with your breasts losing shape and volume after pregnancy, weight loss, or with aging
- Your breasts vary in size or shape
- One or both breasts failed to develop normally
What happens during breast augmentation surgery?
Step 1 – Anesthesia
Medications are administered for your comfort during the surgical procedure. The choices include intravenous sedation and general anesthesia. Your doctor will recommend the best choice for you.
Step 2 – The incision
Incisions are made in inconspicuous areas to minimize visible scarring. Dr Sadove will discuss which incision options are appropriate for your desired outcome. Incision options include:
Incisions vary based on the type of implant, degree of enlargement desired, your particular anatomy, and patient-surgeon preference.
Step 3 – Implant choice
Breast size and shape are important, so be honest and open about your expectations when talking with your surgeon.
Implant type and size will be determined not just on your desired increase in size but more importantly on your breast anatomy, skin elasticity and body type.
Options for Breast Implants
Saline implants are filled with sterile salt water. They can be filled with varying amounts of saline which can affect the shape, firmness and feel of the breast. Should the implant shell leak, a saline implant will collapse and the saline will be absorbed and naturally expelled by the body.
Silicone implants are filled with an elastic gel. The gel feels and moves much like natural breast tissue. If the implant leaks, the gel may remain within the implant shell, or may escape into the breast implant pocket.
A leaking implant filled with silicone gel may not collapse. If you choose these implants, you may need to visit your plastic surgeon regularly to make sure the implants are functioning properly. An ultrasound or MRI screening can assess the condition of breast implants.
Implant manufacturers occasionally introduce new styles and types of implants, so there may be additional options available.
Currently Saline implants are FDA-approved for augmentation in women 18 years of age and older.
Currently Silicone implants are FDA-approved for augmentation in women 22 years of age and older.
Saline or silicone implants may be recommended at a younger age if used for reconstruction purposes.
Step 4 – Inserting and placing the implant
After the incision is made, a breast implant is inserted into a pocket either:
- Under the pectoral muscle (a submuscular placement), or
- Directly behind the breast tissue, over the pectoral muscle (a submammary/ subglandular placement)
The method for inserting and positioning implants depends on the type of implant, degree of enlargement desired, your body type, and your surgeon’s recommendations.
Step 5 – Closing the incisions
Incisions are closed with layered sutures in the breast tissue and with sutures, skin adhesive or surgical tape to close the skin. Over time the incision lines will fade.
Step 6 – See the results
The results of breast augmentation are immediately visible. Over time, post-surgical swelling will resolve and incision lines will fade. Satisfaction with your new image should continue to grow as you recover and realize the fulfillment of your goal for fuller breasts.
Important facts about the safety and risks of breast augmentation
After a post-surgical recovery period of 24 to 48 hours and an additional reduced-activity period of a few days, you will likely experience soreness and swelling for a few weeks.
Exercise and normal activity can resume at the direction of your plastic surgeon. Over time, post-surgical swelling will decrease and incision lines will fade.
When you go home
If you experience shortness of breath, chest pains, or unusual heart beats, seek medical attention immediately. Should any of these complications occur, you may require hospitalization and additional treatment.
The practice of medicine and surgery is not an exact science. Although good results are expected, there is no guarantee. In some situations, it may not be possible to achieve optimal results with a single surgical procedure and another surgery may be necessary.
Following your physician’s instructions is key to the success of your surgery. It is important that the surgical incisions are not subjected to excessive force, abrasion, or motion during the time of healing. Your doctor will give you specific instructions on how to care for yourself.
The decision to have breast augmentation surgery is extremely personal and you’ll have to decide if the benefits will achieve your goals and if the risks and potential complications are acceptable.
Dr Sadove will explain in detail the risks associated with surgery. You will be asked to sign consent forms to ensure that you fully understand the procedure you will undergo and any risks or potential complications.
The risks include:
- Unfavorable scarring
- Bleeding (hematoma)
- Poor healing of incisions
- Changes in nipple or breast sensation, may be temporary or permanent
- Capsular contracture, which is the formation of firm scar tissue around the implant
- Implant leakage or rupture
- Wrinkling of the skin over the implant
- Anesthesia risks
- Fluid accumulation
- Blood clots
- Pain, which may persist
- Deep vein thrombosis, cardiac and pulmonary complications
- Possibility of revisional surgery
Breast implants do not impair breast health. Careful review of scientific research conducted by independent groups such as the Institute of Medicine has found no proven link between breast implants and autoimmune or other systemic diseases.
Other important considerations:
- Breast implants are not guaranteed to last a lifetime and future surgery may be required to replace one or both implants.
- Pregnancy, weight loss and menopause may influence the appearance of augmented breasts over the course of your lifetime.