Breast Implants and Enhancements
Breast augmentation and augmentation mammoplasty are plastic surgery terms for the breast implant and the fat graft mammoplasty approaches used to increase the size, change the shape, and alter the texture of the breasts of a woman. As a primary reconstruction, augmentation mammoplasty is applied to effect a post–mastectomy breast reconstruction, the repair of the chest wound consequent to the removal of a cancerous breast; to correct congenital defects of the breast(s); and to correct congenital defects of the chest wall. As an elective cosmetic surgery, primary augmentation changes the aesthetics of size, shape, and texture of healthy breasts.
This entire process takes just a few weeks to be completed from the consultation process through the recovery after the surgery. Before the surgery, the patient will have to decide what type of implant she wants and what breast size does she want to achieve. Prospects for breast augmentation will go through a thorough consultation process before the doctor will continue with the process to enlarge her breasts.
Types of Implants
Breast augmentation procedure is usually an outpatient practice. There are two types of implants that are typically used, namely, silicone gel or saline. The two enhancements employ a silicone covering. Silicone augmentations are filled with silicone serum that looks and feels such as normal breast tissue. Saline implants are filled with the salt water liquid. At the time of surgical procedure, the saline implant will be filled proportionally into the patient’s body.
Women undergoing breast augmentation can choose between silicone and saline implants. Silicone gel implants are made from elastomer shells pre filled with a clear, thick substance that approximates the amount of breast tissue needed for the reconstruction. Saline implants are shells that are filled with a sterile saline solution. Saline implants are usually inserted into the body empty; once placed properly in the implant pockets, the implant shells are filled with the saline solution.
The two types of available breast implants are models filled with silicone gel, and models filled with saline solution. These types of breast surgery can also repair inverted nipples by releasing milk duct tissues that have become tethered. Furthermore, in the case of the obese woman, a breast lift (mastopexy) procedure, with or without a breast volume reduction, can be part of an upper body lift and contouring for the woman who has undergone massive body weight loss.
Types of Breast Surgery
Cosmetic improvement procedures include breast lift (mastopexy), breast augmentation with implants, and combination procedures. Breast augmentation can be performed through a sub glandular placement method or a sub muscular method. In sub glandular placement, the incision for the implant is made between the breast and chest muscle. The procedure is often less painful and offers easier revision possibilities. On the other hand, cosmetic surgeons perform the sub muscular method by putting the implant behind the chest muscle. Although the process is more painful, it provides results that are less noticeable and more permanent.
Breast augmentation via autologous fat grafts allows the oncological breast surgeon to consider conservative breast surgery procedures that usually are precluded by the presence of alloplastic breast implants, e.g. lumpectomy, if cancer is detected in an implant augmented breast. In previously augmented patients, aesthetic outcomes cannot be ensured without removing the implant and performing mastectomy. Moreover, radiotherapy treatment is critical to reducing cancerous recurrence and to the maximal conservation of breast tissue; yet, ironically, radiotherapy of an implant augmented breast much increases the incidence of medical complications—capsular contracture, infection, extrusion, and poor cosmetic outcome.
The outcome of a breast augmentation with fat graft injections depends upon proper patient selection, preparation, and correct technique for recipient site expansion, and the harvesting, refining, and injecting of the autologous breast filler fat. Technical success follows the adequate external vacuum expansion of the recipient site tissues (matrix) before the injection of large volume grafts (220–650 cc) of autologous fat to the breasts. After harvesting by liposuction, the breast filler fat was obtained by low G force syringe centrifugation of the harvested fat to separate it, by density, from the crystalloid component. The refined breast filler then was injected to the pre expanded recipient site; post procedure, the patient resumed continual vacuum expansion therapy upon the injected breast, until the next fat grafting session. The mean operating room (OR) time was 2 hours, and there occurred no incidences of infection, cysts, seroma, hematoma, or tissue necrosis.
Benefits of Breast Enlargement
The main benefit of breast augmentation for the recipient is mental. Generally, the women that desire breast augmentation are not satisfied with what they see in front of the mirror. This can cause them to have low self-esteem. After the surgery, they often feel better about themselves because of the balanced figure they’ve achieved.
The study, “Effect of Breast Augmentation Mammoplasty on Self Esteem and Sexuality: A Quantitative Analysis (2007)”, reported that the women attributed their improved self-image, self-esteem, and increased satisfactory sexual functioning to having undergone breast augmentation. The typical patient was between the ages of twenty-one and fifty-nine years. Their self-esteem scores increased an average of twenty-seven to thirty percent. The data also revealed a significant increase in the woman’s sexual libido relative to her pre-operative levels. These results illustrate the need for the surgeon, before performing any surgery, to evaluate the woman’s mental health to determine if breast implants can positively affect her self-esteem and sexual functioning.
What are the risks of having breast augmentation?
In reality all surgeries are risky. There are times that bleeding and infection occur. In addition, swelling and bruising are very common but they are healed in one to two weeks. Furthermore, a patient may feel numb once the operation is finished but this will subside later on. These are normal effects of having a breast enlargement procedure. Of course, there is also the risk of rejection by your body. That is, in rare cases, the woman’s body will not accept the implant itself. Infection and above-normal temperatures can result as the body fights to reject the foreign object that has been implanted. Fortunately, the follow up care by the plastic surgeon will eliminate any significant risk to the patient.
In fat graft breast augmentation procedures, there is the risk that the adipocyte tissue grafted to the breast(s) can undergo necrosis, metastatic calcification, develop cysts, and agglomerate into palpable lumps. Although the cause of metastatic calcification is unknown, the post-procedure biological changes that affect the fat graft tissue resemble the tissue changes usual to breast surgery procedures such as breast reduction mammoplasty. The French study “Radiological Evaluation of Breasts Reconstructed with Lipo modeling (2005)” indicates the therapeutic efficacy of fat graft breast reconstruction in the treatment of radiation therapy damage to the chest, the incidental reduction of capsular contracture, and the improved soft tissue coverage of breast implants.
Recovery From A Boob Job
Since this is an invasive surgical procedure, there will always be some initial scarring. The scars from the mammoplasty normally develop roughly six weeks after the procedure. They then fade within a few months thereafter.
Depending upon the daily life physical activities required of the woman, the breast implant patient is usually able to resume her “normal” life about one week after the procedure. However, those women who have breast implants implanted beneath the chest muscles (sub-muscular) usually have a longer and slightly more painful healing and recovery period. This is the result of the healing of the incisions to the chest muscles. In those instances, the patient will refrain from all strenuous physical activities (exercise) for a period of approximately six weeks.
Shortly after the procedure, the woman is encouraged to flex and move her arm in order to reduce the pain and discomfort from the surgery. If required, the doctor can prescribe analgesic indwelling medication catheters to alleviate pain. Generally, patient recovery time will be shortened if the surgeon used sub-muscular and sub-glandular breast implant techniques. In those instances, 95 per cent of women resume their normal lives within one day.
During the time immediately following your breast augmentation surgery, you will be required to stay in the hospital’s recovery room where you are regularly monitored prior to release. The time you will be required to spend in the hospital recovery room will vary, but mostly this does not take long as most patients spend their recovery comfortably at home.
Your movements will also be very limited, with breast augmentation actually being one of the most invasive procedures in cosmetic surgery. Following the surgery, you will be asked to wear a special compression garment so that your breasts will be bound to your body. And even though you may be perfectly healthy, it is important that another person be there to drive you home after the surgery since you will be in no position to drive as you won’t have full range of motion in your arms and your vision may be blurred.
Generally, the patient is advised to rest for a day to ensure safety. Moreover, exertions should be avoided. With regards to using a bra, bandages are replaced and used in a given period of time. The patient will be back to normal after two weeks depending on the fast recovery of the wounds that were made ion the operation.
Cost of Breast Implant Surgery
Insurance companies almost always treat breast implant surgery as an elective procedure by their insured. It is not treated as a medically necessary surgery. Therefore, in most cases, the patient will be solely responsible for the cost of the procedure. This will usually include MRI scans of the breast both before and after the surgery (to monitor your implants). This can be fairly expensive for most women especially younger women whose income is lower. Fortunately, many plastic surgeons who specialize in breast enhancement surgery will provide affordable payment plans.
Are You a Candidate for Breast Enlargement Surgery?
The average breast augmentation patient is a young woman whose personality profile indicates some level of psychological distress about her personal appearance and her body (self-image). She might also have a history of having endured criticism (teasing) about the aesthetics of her body. Some studies have reported findings suggesting that women who underwent breast augmentation surgery had often undergone counseling or psychotherapy, suffered low self-esteem, and battled episodes of depression. Some women had even attempted suicide. Post-operative surveys of these women reported better physical health and appearance, an improved social life, self-confidence, self-esteem, and increased satisfactory sexual functioning. Most of the women also reported long term satisfaction with their breast implants.
Finding a Top Breast Implant Plastic Surgeon
Before deciding to have a breast augmentation, the first thing the possible patient should do is to look for a surgeon that will do the surgery. The surgeon should be a specialist in plastic surgery and have at least two years of experience in this specialty and a minimum of five years of experience in surgical training. The patient should know if the facilities used are accredited. She should also research about the doctor to see if he follows the profession’s code of ethics and if he is a certified member of The American Board of Plastic Surgery. Also, compare breast augmentation photos so that you have an idea of the size, shape and style of implant you want.
Many women hire a plastic surgeon for breast augmentation based solely on price. While the cost of the procedure is a factor to be considered, it should never be one of the primary factors. Remember that breast augmentation surgery is just that, a surgical procedure. And, even though it is now viewed as a “routine” surgical procedure, it will significantly impact the appearance of your body for the rest of your life. If you hire an inferior doctor for your ‘boob job’ you will likely suffer the consequences of this decision for the remainder of your life. Finding the “best deal” often results in them paying more money to have revision surgery. The best advice is to make sure that you find a top plastic surgeon that specializes in breast surgery. At a minimum, the doctor should be certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery. This provides some assurance that the breast implant surgeon is properly trained and adheres to a strict code of professional, safety and ethical standards. Be sure to find a plastic surgeon that has a lot of experience with breast surgery and has few or no complaints for botched procedures.
There are a number of excellent cosmetic surgeons in South Carolina. Visit the other pages on our site to find great breast implant surgeons and the best rhinoplasty surgeons in Charleston and also in Mt. Pleasant, SC.
Watch this breast implant procedure: