Breast augmentation is the enlargement of the breast by placing an implant (also called a prosthesis), either directly behind the tissue of the breast gland or underneath the pectoral muscles as well as the breast (sub-muscular).
Breast implants are inserted through either an incision around the lower border of the nipple (at the edge of the areola or pigmented area), an incision in the skin fold below the breast or an incision in the armpit. (A small minority of surgeons use the umbilicus or belly button, but implant manufacturers are concerned about damage to the implant with this technique.) Choice of incision and breast size is largely a matter of preference of the patient and plastic surgeon.
You are a good candidate for this procedure if your breasts are significantly smaller than you would like them to be and not unduly droopy. If the breast is also quite droopy, you can still have a breast augmentation but you may also need a mastopexy (breast lift) to be done at the same time.
What to expect
If the implants are to be inserted beneath the muscle, a general anesthetic is usually used. Breast augmentation can also be performed under local anesthesia (injections to freeze the tissues) and sedation, but I rarely do this as the procedure may still be uncomfortable. Breast augmentation is an outpatient procedure.
I usually place On-Q™ or Accufuser™ catheters on each side, as well. These are very small tubes, about the size of an I.V. catheter, but longer, that pass a steady flow of local anesthetic into the area of surgery for the first three or four days. They significantly reduce the pain, and the amount of painkillers that you will need.
After surgery you will have some discomfort. If the implant has been put beneath the muscles the pain is more severe and pain may occur upon moving the arms. Typically there is not a great deal of bruising or swelling. You should be able to return to work in two or three days, if the implants are above the muscle, or seven to ten days if they are below. However, you must avoid strenuous activity for two to six weeks.
Of course the improvement in your figure following breast augmentation is most noticeable in swimwear or a low-cut dress. Many patients are also happier with the way their other clothes fit and look afterwards. Today’s fashions often rely on a bustline for their effect. If you have this procedure to satisfy your own wishes (and not those of a husband or lover), you are likely to be very happy with the result.
If you are considering Breast Augmentation in Orange County, please click here to contact Newport Beach Plastic Surgeon, Dr. Bailey, for a consultation.
Before and After Pictures
Click on the picture to see more breast augmentation photos.