SIDE EFFECTS: Swelling, and some bruising or pain
RISKS: Bleeding, infection, implant deflation, loss of nipple sensation, pain
RECOVERY: Return to work?: 2-3 days Light exercise: 1 week Swelling completely resolves: 4-8 weeks
LENGTH: 1 hours
ANESTHESIA: Local with Sedation or General
For breasts that appear small or deflated, a breast enlargement or augmentation is a procedure that will enhance the size and shape of a woman’s breasts. This improves the physical appearance and may boost confidence and lift self-esteem. Breast augmentation is achieved by placing a surgical implant behind the breast or chest muscle.
Dr. Tran is a plastic surgeon with a special focus in breast surgery. He is certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery.
Before you decide to have a breast augmentation, think carefully about your expectations and make sure you discuss them with Dr. Tran.
Your Breast Augmentation Consultation
Your visit with Dr. Tran will determine if you are a good candidate for a breast augmentation. If you are in good physical health, have no breast disease and have reasonable expectations then this may be a good choice for you and your lifestyle.
During your first visit, Dr. Tran will ask you about your desired breast size, shape and any concerns you have about their appearance. This will help him understand your expectations so he can let you know if your goals can be realistically accomplished by surgery. He will examine and measure your breasts considering factors such as the size and shape, amount of breast tissue present, the quality of skin, and the location of your nipples. If you have sagging breasts, a breast lift may be recommended together with the breast augmentation.
Be prepared to discuss any medical conditions you have, allergies, prior surgeries including breast biopsies, and medications, vitamins or other supplements that you currently take. You will be asked whether anyone in your family has had breast cancer and about the results of any mammograms. It is important for you to provide complete information. If you are a smoker, you should stop smoking at least 3 weeks before your surgery.
You will learn about the different techniques of breast augmentation, the limitations and risks of each one, and the different types of breast implants. He will explain which surgical techniques and implant sizes are most appropriate for you based on your physical exam and factors such as the condition of your breasts, quality of skin tone, and your desired goals. Photographs will be taken for your medical record and 3-D imaging technology may be used to help you have a better idea how your breasts will appear after placing different sized implants.
Breast Augmentation Techniques
There are several different methods that can be used to augment your breasts. Incisions can be hidden below the crease of the breast, around the nipple, or if you wish to have no scars on the breast, in the underarm area or belly button. A saline or silicone gel implant is then placed in a pocket behind the breast tissue or chest muscle. Newer lipo-augmentation techniques using your own fat instead of implants are also now possible. Dr. Tran will assist you in the decision making process and help you choose the procedure that is right for you.
ELEMENTS OF A BREAST AUGMENTATION
Implants: The implants are quite literally the largest part of any successful breast augmentation. Whereas the surgery and recovery periods are temporary, your implants are going to be with you forever, so you don’t want to jump straight for the largest ones available. When deciding on the best implant for you, your board-certified plastic surgeon will take these three major things into consideration:
- Filling: Saline or a variation of silicone
- Profile: Low, Moderate or High profile breast implants
- Shape: Anatomical teardrop implants or round implants
Just this decision alone will account for the much of your pre-surgery pondering time, but it will be time well spent in making sure that your new breasts are absolutely perfect for you
Incision: Obviously, any plastic surgery requires that you receive a few incisions to make sure that any implants are securely placed during the procedure. “Scarring” can seem like a nightmare, but a skilled plastic surgeon can do an excellent job of tidying up any entry points so that your scars are barely visible, if at all. And while the possibility of scars isn’t negotiable, the placement of those scars is, so candid discussion with your plastic surgeon about his suggested incision method will help you decide on one of these solutions:
- Inframammary: The most popular incision method, inframmary breast augmentation lets your surgeon slip the implant discreetly under the bottom fold of your breast, leaving a tiny scar that is only visible when you are in a bikini and lying down.
- Periareolar: An interesting choice and one that is gaining considerable popularity among surgeons everywhere, periareolar breast augmentation seeks to blend the scar with the natural color/texture transition between your breast and the areola (nipple). The scar is only visible while you are nude, and at the hand of a skilled plastic surgeon can go entirely undetected, even when you bare it all.
- Endoscopic Axillary: The theory behind endoscopic axillary breast augmentation is that remote insertion of the breast implant will be the best method of concealing a scar. Rather than entering through the breast, the transaxillary approach places the implant through an incision under the armpit leaving no discernible signs of scarring anywhere near your breasts.
- Transabdominal and transumbilical: Transabdominal and transumbilical breast augmentation both insert the implant through the stomach and belly button, respectively. While these methods are best used in conjunction with a Mommy Makeover, they are rarely suggested as a primary method of insertion for other women.
Additionally, your implant decision can affect your possibilities when it comes to insertion, so talk to your doctor about how scarring and incision relate do different implant types
Placement: Although the implant type that you choose will certainly affect the suggested placement of the device, your own personal breast tissue will be the greatest factor in deciding how exactly it will be done. Your plastic surgeon’s goal will always be concealing the implant in a natural way, so depending on the amount of healthy tissue you have on the outside of the breast, your implant will generally be placed in one of two locations:
- Subglandular: The implant is placed between the mammary glands and the pectoral muscle. This choice can produce anatomically accurate results, but requires sufficient amounts of mammary tissue above the pectoral muscle to conceal the implant.
- Submuscular: The implant pocket is created beneath the pectoral muscle and above the chest wall. This option is for women with modest amounts of mammary tissue, and allows the implant to be concealed by both the pectoral muscle and the breast tissue, giving the breast a more natural contour.
Of course, large and high profile breast implants will be increasingly difficult to conceal by either subglandular or submuscular surgeries, but moderately-sized implants can always be coordinated with different placement methods to achieve the best results.
The Day of Breast Augmentation Surgery
Before surgery, you will be given medicine to lessen the anxiety and pain. You will be completely asleep under general anesthesia or twilight sedation if you prefer. You will meet your anesthetist before your procedure and he or she will answer any questions you may have about your anesthesia. The surgery usually takes one hour. After your procedure, you will wake up in a recovery area where you will be closely monitored.
Surgery usually is performed as an outpatient procedure. Be sure to arrange for someone to drive you home and stay with you the first few days while at home.
Although you may feel tired and sore, there is usually minimal pain. Most women return to work within one or two days; however, plan on having light physical activity for at least four weeks. A surgical bra will serve as the dressing with gauze on your incisions for two days. You may begin showering the day after your surgery.
Your follow-up visits will usually start three to four days after your surgery, then at three weeks, three months, six months and one year. If you have any concerns during your recovery, or have more questions at a later time, you can always contact Dr. Tran at 682-217-1080.