Breast enhancement is, perhaps, the most popular form of breast cosmetic surgery. Also called breast augmentation, breast enlargement or, in medical terms, augmentation mammoplasty, the procedure is designed to make breasts larger. It is also performed to balance asymmetrical breasts, to enhance the shape of breasts that have shrunk due to age or breastfeeding or to reconstruct breasts that have been misshapen or removed by surgery.
Breast enhancement involves placing silicone or saline implants either directly behind or in front of the chest muscle. Women generally choose to have breast enhancement surgery to improve their appearance and boost their self-esteem.
WHO QUALIFIES FOR BREAST ENHANCEMENT?
Breast enhancement is recommended for women whose breasts are already fully developed. It is not advised to be performed on women under 18 years old since breasts continue to develop until they are in their early 20s. Whether you are considering breast enhancement for cosmetic or health reasons, it is best to leave this decision in the hands of a qualified cosmetic surgeon.
HOW DOES ONE PREPARE FOR BREAST ENHANCEMENT SURGERY?
As with any other surgery, breast enhancement begins with a consultation with your surgeon. Your doctor will give you his/her expert opinion on whether the procedure is right for you, the size and kind of implant that suits you best and a realistic expectation of the results of the surgery.
You may be required to undergo a physical examination and have your blood tested before the surgery. Once it is established that you are a good candidate for breast enhancement, you will be scheduled for a preoperative appointment, which will take place about two weeks before your surgery.
During the preoperative appointment, your surgeon will discuss deatils of the surgery, including the type of anesthetic to be used, incisions that have to be made and postsurgical recovery. Your doctor may take pictures of your breasts for your medical records and ask you to sign consent forms. Be sure to ask any questions or convey any concerns you may have with your doctor.
How is breast enhancement performed?
Breast enhancement surgery is performed under general anesthesia. Implants are inserted under or above the pectoral muscle. From the 1960s to the 1980s, implants were made of silicone gel. But the material has been associated with a number of connective tissue and autoimmune diseases; there have also been concerns about the possibility of leakage leading to chronic illness.
Today, silicon gel implants are restricted to research purposes. They have been replaced by saline breast implants, which are silicone shells filled with sterile saltwater solution. Saline implants come in round or anatomical shapes with a smooth or textured surface. Soy solution-filled implants are also available.
Breast enhancement surgery usually takes between one and two hours.
What are the typical results of breast enhancement surgery?
You will generally experience significant discomfort, drowsiness and attendant swelling following breast enhancement surgery. Your doctor will prescribe painkillers to help you deal with the pain. After a couple of weeks, the swelling will subside, revealing the shape of your new breasts.
Breast enhancement should not be a concern among mothers or women who intend to get pregnant since it does not affect a woman’s ability to breastfeed.
Most women who undergo the procedure report higher self-esteem as a result of the surgery.
What are the risks or possible complications of breast enhancement surgery?
While saline implants no longer cause the side effects associated with silicone implants, breast enhancement surgery still involves risks and possible complications. These include capsular contracture, ruptured breast implants, scarring of breast tissue that may cause the breasts to harden, internal bleeding, nipples that are either sensitive or lacking sensitivity, and infection. Such side effects, however, are rare. Still, anyone undergoing breast implant surgery must be made aware of the risks involved.
How soon does one recover from surgery?
The recovery period for breast enhancement surgery depends on several factors, including the patient’s condition and the size of enlargement. On average, however, you should be able to get up and move around after 48 hours. Full recovery can take anywhere from several weeks to a couple of months.
Many women are able to return to work after just a week. Care must be taken to limit physical activity or any exertion that could tear your stitches or give rise to infection. Exercise generally can be resumed within three to four weeks after surgery.
Houston, Texas, call Gallas Plastic Surgery & Vein Center at (281) 646-1114 today or use our online Request an Appointment form.