It is important that you have a good understanding of the types of breast augmentation techniques before planning your surgery.
What is breast augmentation surgery? Who performs breast augmentation surgery? What are the possible complications of breast augmentation surgery?
Breast augmentation surgery, also known as augmentation mammoplasty or boob job, is one of the most common cosmetic surgeries in the UK. This article deals with breast augmentation surgery, types of breast augmentation techniques, and subsequent care related to breast enlargement surgery.
Types of breast augmentation techniques
Breast augmentation surgery helps to increase and enhance the size of the breasts, with the aim of enhancing the size and shape of the breasts by giving them a fuller and more attractive appearance. Your surgeon may use a breast implant to enlarge the breasts or liposuction to remove fat from one part of the body, then transfer that fat to the breasts. If the surgeon uses fat to enlarge the breasts, it is called “lipophilic” or breast enlargement by transferring fat to the breast.
These are some of the common reasons you may choose various types of breast augmentation techniques:
Recovery of breast volume lost as a result of aging, weight loss or pregnancy
To make your breast shape more curvy
Balancing asymmetric breasts
Strengthening self-esteem and beauty
Although breast augmentation surgery can improve the shape of the breasts, it cannot correct severe drooping. Breast enlargement (also called mastopexy) may be more appropriate for patients with saggy breasts. To achieve good cosmetic results, your surgeon may suggest breast augmentation with upper body lift.
Who are the ideal candidates for various types of breast augmentation techniques?
Breast augmentation may be an option for women looking to increase the size and shape of their breasts. The ideal candidate for breast augmentation surgery is likely to be:
- Over 18 years old
- Not pregnant or breastfeeding at the time of surgery
- Realistic along with proper expectations
- Physically healthy
- Emotionally prepared for surgery
- Dissatisfied with the current look of her breast
- Non-smokers, or those who have quit smoking and nicotine-containing products at least 6 weeks before surgery.
Why people choose one of the types of breast augmentation techniques?
For various reasons, you may want to have a breast augmentation surgery. Some of the most common include:
Breast enlargement surgery gives the breasts a fuller and more attractive appearance. A patient can perform breast augmentation surgery for aesthetic reasons.
In general, breast augmentation can:
- Recover lost volume of breast
- Enlarge the shape of the breasts
- Balance the difference in breast size
- Correct breast asymmetry
- Strengthen self-esteem
It is important to note that although almost all types of breast augmentation techniques can enhance the shape and size of the breast, they cannot correct severe drooping breasts. Breast lift surgery is a better option for patients with severe fall breasts. Your surgeon may also choose a combination of breast augmentation with a breast lift to give the best result.
Breast augmentation Surgery may be a good option for those who have had their breast removed because of breast cancer. Surgery called one or both mastectomies. Mastectomy may also be performed as a preventative procedure for future family genetic breast cancer. Breast enlargement is one way to restore breast shape for those who have had mastectomy.
In general, if you are considering breast augmentation surgery, you can increase your fitness for surgery by optimizing your health. Regular exercise, eating a healthy diet, stopping smoking, and reducing alcohol consumption are ways you can increase your chances of being a great candidate for all types of breast augmentation techniques, no matter what reason you decide to do it.
Stages of breast augmentation surgery
Breast augmentation surgery usually takes between 60 and 90 minutes. Before surgery, you should follow the instructions your surgeon gave you about eating, drinking, and taking medications the night and weeks before.
Stages of breast augmentation surgery include:
Consultation on breast augmentation surgery usually takes between 15 and 60 minutes. During this appointment, your surgeon will discuss the following with you:
- Your reasons for breast augmentation
- Your expectations and desired results from surgery
- Current or past medical records
- Past or future scheduled surgeries
- Current medicines, vitamins or herbal supplements you take
- Any personal or family history of breast cancer
- The results of any mammography or biopsy you have
- Use of any alcohol, tobacco and drugs
After your surgeon talks about your medical history and medications, they will examine and measure your breasts. This includes measuring and recording your breast size, shape, skin quality, and nipple and areolar placement. They then take pictures of your breasts and discuss with you the options for surgery and types of breast augmentation techniques. In choosing the technique, your surgeon will consider the following:
- The current size and shape of your breast
- The size and shape of the breast you want
- The quality and quantity of your breast tissue and skin
- Past or present medical records.
The surgeon will also talk to you about the risks and complications associated with breast augmentation surgery to make sure you are aware. It is important for you to know all the possible risks before you consent to having surgery on you.
Your surgeon explains types of breast augmentation techniques for you to choose.
Questions to ask during breast augmentation surgery consultation
There are some important questions you should ask your surgeon during breast augmentation consultation:
- Do you think my goals for this breast augmentation surgery are realistic?
- How can I get the best results possible?
- Will the scars remain when the wounds heal?
- Can I see the results of similar breast augmentation surgeries you’ve done so far?
Counseling is an opportunity for you to be as honest and realistic as possible with your surgeon. It’s important to be honest about what you want to achieve so that you can find out whether the outcome is realistic.
After discussing various types of breast augmentation techniques, you will meet with your surgeon and anesthesiologist to sign the consent form. This can happen either on the day of surgery or during the preoperative evaluation, such as a week before. Surgery can be done as soon as the consent form is signed. Upon arrival at the hospital, the surgeon draws shapes on the breasts and tells you the exact goals of breast augmentation surgery.
The anesthesiologist will anesthetize you. They may use general anesthesia or topical IV (intravenous) sedation. You and your surgeon will talk first about using anesthesia in your consultation session..
Your surgeon cleans the skin of the breasts and the inner part of the breast before making the necessary incisions for breast augmentation, then puts a surgical cover on you. The incisions are generally deliberately made to make the scars out of view and thus the result will be aesthetically pleasing after recovery. There are three areas that can be cut during a breast augmentation procedure, which determine types of breast augmentation techniques regarding cuts:
- Transaxillary – axillary area
- Periareolar – Around Areola
- Inframammary – Lower crease of the breast
Insert breast implant
Your surgeon then inserts the implant into the breast. They can place the implant on the pectoralis major, under the chest muscle, or a combination of both.
Types of breast augmentation techniques regarding implants
Subcutaneous or subglandular implant (on chest muscle)
The breast implant, which is placed on the chest muscle, can give the breast more shape because the implant is closer to the surface of the skin. This procedure is slightly invasive, so you may feel just a little pain in the first few days after breast augmentation surgery. Placing the implant on the muscle also allows less implant movement when the chest muscle is flexed or bent.
Subpectoral implants (under the chest muscle)
Breast implants that lie beneath the chest muscle are less felt or seen. The reason is that the muscle creates a very good soft tissue. Since these implants are not directly under the mammary tissue, they are probably less likely to interfere with mammograms. This is one of the invasive areas and therefore needs a more than moderate recovery period.
Dual plane breast augmentation
The dual plane breast augmentation (also referred to as the bi plane breast augmentation) combines both subglandular and submuscular types of breast augmentation techniques. The upper part of the implant is beneath the muscle. This reduces the risk of bulging. The lower part is directly in contact with the breast tissue. This helps to make the lower half of the breast more complete and curved. Your surgeon will work with you to choose which technique is best for you.
Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation (No implants)
In this way, breast augmentation with a natural appearance as well as total liposuction of the body is possible simultaneously. The specialist removes fat from the body such as the abdomen, thighs or arms and transfers it to the breasts.
With the technique of injecting fat into the breasts, no artificial saline or silicone prosthesis implants are needed to enlarge the breasts. In this technique, liposuction fats are injected into the breasts to increase breast volume. Injectable fat is a living tissue and enlarges the breasts with a very natural appearance.
What are the proper candidates for fat transfer breast augmentation?
This technique may be ideal for these women:
- Their breast size is very small or medium.
- Have symmetry of the breasts
- Have Empty and drpooing breasts after pregnancy or multiple pregnancies
Women who need this method of breast reconstruction are usually people who do not want silicone prosthesis in their bodies because they feel this is abnormal and may have long-term consequences. Another advantage of this technique is that it will not leave any significant scars on the breasts.
But remember that your expectation for breast augmentation surgery must be realistic. Because this method of breast enlargement (as opposed to silicone prosthesis) has limitations. For women with a family history of breast cancer, this type of surgery is not recommended.
Closing the incisions
Your surgeon then closes the incisions and puts the dressing on it. Drains may be placed under the skin to reduce swelling and bruising. They are usually removed before being discharged and going home.
Returning to ward
Finally, you will return to the ward to recover from anesthesia. You can return home the same day or the next day. The overall results are visible immediately after surgery. But it may take up to 8 weeks for the swelling and bruising to subside. After that you can see the full result of your breast enlargement aesthetic.
Different Breast Implants for Various Types of Breast Augmentation Techniques
Medical surgeons use only the highest quality brands of implants that are strictly tested for quality and safety. The size of your breast implant is measured in volume, in cubic centimeters (cc). Once you have selected the size of cup you want, the surgeon will work with you to determine the appropriate size of the implant. However, keep in mind that the size of the breast implant is not necessarily equal to the size of the bra cup size. Each breast implant has a thin outer layer made of silicone. This outer layer of the breast implant can also be soft or textured. Breast implants are filled with either silicone gel or highly coherent silicone gel.
The saline implants consist of an outer silicone shell filled with sterile saline (saline). The surgeon inserts an empty silicone shell into the breast and then inflates it with a small saline valve. This means that implantation of saline implants requires a smaller incision, and therefore a smaller scar from breast augmentation surgery using silicone implants remains. Saline implants are the least popular among all types of implants. This is because they are more susceptible to rupture and volume loss compared to silicone implants. Because of their consistency, they may look natural compared to silicone implants.
The silicone gel implant consists of a thin outer silicone shell filled with soft silicone gel. The placement of silicone gel implants requires a larger incision than saline implants because they are fully sized prior to implantation. Silicone gel implants are more durable than saline implants. This makes them less prone to wrinkles, which means they feel more natural than saline implants.
Cohesive silicone gel
Cohesive gel implants consist of an outer silicone shell and have a silicone gel firmer than standard silicone implants. These provide consistency, strength and the most natural look and feel among the current types of implants. Cohesive silicone gel implants also are reported to have the least rupture. Even in the event of rupture, the contents do not fall out like other implants.
Forms of Breast Implants
Breast implants are usually round or tear-shaped. Both forms help to create a perfectly natural breast, but the shape of the implant that suits you will depend on what you want to gain from breast enlargement. The surgeon will work with you to find the shape of your implant that will give you the best cosmetic results from the surgery.
Round implants give volume to both the upper and lower parts of the breast. This allows them to give the breasts a fuller look and is a good choice for patients who want to add more volume to their breasts.
Tear drop implants (anatomical)
The tear drop implant gives greater volume to the lower part of the breast than the upper part. It creates a more pleasing appearance that will closely preserve the natural shape of the breasts. This is usually a better option for patients who are looking for a more natural outcome of breast enlargement surgery.
Risks and complications of breast augmentation surgery
Although breast augmentation surgery is a selective procedure, there are potential risks and complications that you should be aware of. Your surgeon will talk to you about the risks and complications of breast enlargement surgery during your consultation. Choosing a highly experienced surgeon reduces the risk of any complications and risks of breast augmentation surgery. Some of the risks and complications of breast enlargement surgery include the following but not all:
Bleeding and bruising
It is normal to have mild bleeding and bruising after breast enlargement. In some cases, the bleeding may be more severe. This usually happens shortly after surgery, but it can potentially happen within weeks of your operation. After surgery, the breasts will be very swollen and firm, and you will need corrective surgery to see if they continue. You may also need to spend an extra night in the hospital if the swelling does not disappear. If treated timely, it is unlikely that swelling and bleeding will have a negative effect on breast augmentation surgery.
Because the surgeon should make a cut on the skin, scarring is inevitable. But in most cases the wounds tend to fade and disappear over time.
Infection is a risk that can occur in any operation. If you have a mild infection, the surgeon will give you antibiotic treatment. In order to get an early infection, it is important for you to understand the related symptoms. These include:
Fever over 38 ° C
Redness on the cut line that is spread around the cut
Yellow, pus-like or impure liquids that enter or are discharged from the incision site
Increased pain or discomfort not alleviated by painkillers
If you notice any of these symptoms, tell your surgeon immediately. Smoking also increases the likelihood of postoperative infection. It does this by lowering blood flow to the body, which slows down your overall recovery speed, especially after surgery. If your breasts do not heal properly or quickly after surgery, you will be at risk for infection as well as other important complications. That is why it is important for you to stop smoking at least 6 weeks before breast augmentation surgery.
Moderate numbness or altered sensation
One of the most common risks associated with breast augmentation surgery is sensory changes in the breasts. Typically, postoperative patients feel an increase or decrease in sensitivity (anesthesia) around the wound, nipple, or areola. Both numbness and hypersensitivity gradually return to normal over time. However, this can take several months. In some cases, numbness or altered sensation can be lasting and may become permanent.
During surgery, blood supply to certain areas of the breast, including the nipple, skin, fat or breast tissue, may be lost. If this happens, the affected area may die. This tissue death is called “necrosis” and is a very rare complication of surgery. Most necrosis occurs in smokers. This is because smoking reduces blood flow to the body and in turn reduces recovery and increases the risk of complications such as necrosis and other more serious risks such as stroke or heart attack. This risk is especially dangerous when working on smaller parts of the body, such as nipples or breasts, which have thin blood vessels and are easily injured during surgery. To give yourself the best opportunity to recover quickly, you need to quit smoking at least 6 weeks before the date of surgery. If necrosis occurs, you will need additional surgery to remove the dead tissue. This is one of the few risks associated with breast augmentation surgery.
When the surgeon inserts any type of implant (whether saline or silicone) into the body, the body’s natural response is to create a capsule of connective tissue instead of a fibrous wound around it. Once formed, this connective tissue rather than a scar tends to shrink. In some cases, contraction can cause the capsule to harden. When the capsule is hardened, the implant and breast are abnormally tightened or sometimes hard and annoying. This usually causes the implant to move upward on the chest and give the breasts a long, round appearance with the rest of the breast tissue underneath the implant.
Capsular contracture is the most common long-term complication associated with breast enlargement surgery. It is less frequent in saline implants than silicone implants. In most cases of capsular contracture, your surgeon recommends implant and fiber capsule surgery. This procedure is called capsulectomy, which aims to restore breast symmetry and relieve pain and discomfort. This can include removing the implants completely or replacing them after the capsule is removed.
Serum is a fluid pack that usually develops below and around the incision, 7 to 10 days after surgery. If this happens, the incision in the breast may swell or you may feel fluid under the skin. Developing a seroma can extend your recovery time. Most seromas resolve on their own, but in some cases, the surgeon may need to drain the fluid.
After breast augmentation surgery, the implant may cause the skin to wrinkle unpleasantly. The risk of wrinkles is very low. But it is more common in patients with small breasts who decide to have a saline implant.
Rupture occurs when the implant is broken and the contents leak into the body. If this happens, the implant should be removed. Optionally, torn implants can be replaced with new ones if desired. Rupture can be caused by damage to the implant after insertion, either as a result of preoperative transplant surgery or during surgery. That is why it is important to choose an experienced surgeon who knows how to do the implant properly. Rupture is most likely to occur in saline implants. They can be more difficult to detect on silicone implants because the contents do not leak easily. If silicon rupture is not detected, it is called “silent rupture”. The FDA recommends that patients who have silicone implants undergo regular MRI checks after surgery to detect silent ruptures.
Over time, both normal breasts and breasts that have implants become affected by gravity and gradually begin to fall on the chest. Larger implants generally fall more than smaller ones. The effect of gravity can reduce the strength of the breasts. The disease is caused by a combination of things such as loss of skin elasticity, gravity effect and loss of breast tissue volume (especially after pregnancy and lactation). This decrease can be corrected by chest and breast lift.
During breast enlargement surgery, your surgeon will create a pocket underneath or above the chest muscles where they will insert the implant. This pocket can sometimes change shape and cause implants to move to the armpit. This can reduce or eliminate the gap. If one has a small natural breast tissue and large implants that change the size of the cup dramatically, displacement occurs. Also, if the surgeon places the implants above the muscle, it is more likely to occur. If a displacement occurs, your surgeon can correct it by performing further surgeries.
Breast Implant Associated Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma
Anaplastic large cell lymphoma associated with breast implant (BIA-ALCL) is a lymph node cancer. Symptoms can include swelling of the breast or the build-up of fluid around the implant. However, this is a very rare situation. Treatment includes surgery for breast capsules and implants and, in some cases, chemotherapy. If you and your surgeon diagnose BIA-ALCL and treat it early, it will be treatable.
Breast implant placement can sometimes interfere with natural folds at the bottom of the breast (lower breast folds). “Double bubble” occurs when the implant falls below this fold and causes another fold in the breast. Implants under the breast (subcutaneous implants) are more at risk for this complication. If this happens, revision surgery may be necessary to remove its appearance.
To keep the implant in your chest, your surgeon will create a “pocket” beneath or above the chest muscle. This pocket can sometimes lose stability and cause implant displacement. When this happens, the implant support tissue at the bottom of the breast allows the implant to come down, which in turn lowers the surrounding breast tissue. This can cause abnormalities in the breasts, as the lower part of the breast is very full and the nipples may appear abnormally high. More surgeries can restore the breasts to their aesthetic state.
There is always a risk that you may be unhappy with the results of your breast augmentation surgery regardless of the types of breast augmentation techniques you have chosen. For example, you may be unhappy with the size, shape or symmetry of your breasts. Carefully choosing a surgeon can help you avoid this result. It is recommended to make sure the surgeon understands your expectations fully and is honest with you about the feasibility of these expectations.
How do I get ready for breast augmentation surgery?
It is important to prepare well before breast augmentation surgery. We recommend the following for breast augmentation surgery preparation:
You will not be allowed to drive a car immediately after breast augmentation surgery. Your surgeon may order you to wait 5 days to 2 weeks to drive again. So it’s important to have a friend or family member with you after the surgery to get you home. You will also need adult supervision for the first 24 hours after breast augmentation surgery. The reason is that you may be affected by anesthetics and painkillers during this time period.
Sleeping and resting
After breast augmentation surgery, you may need a more relaxing sleep. So you need to have extra pillows on your bed; rest and sleep on your back for the first few days. It is important to have plenty of rest after surgery. However, you have to be mobile and occasionally walk at home. Doing so will help reduce the risk of blood clots in the legs.
Household appliances and house chores
Before operating, you should place necessary items such as utensils, mugs and dry food on the kitchen counter. This allows you to put less pressure on your cuts with access to the equipment. It’s also a good idea for you to clean the house, wash your clothes and dump the trash before the day of surgery.
Since you will not be able to lift heavy objects after surgery, you should go to the grocery store the day before. It can also be helpful to store some meals and keep them in the freezer so you don’t have to worry about cooking.
Children and pets
To help you heal, you should ask your family and friends to help take care of your pets and young children.
Maintaining a healthy diet after breast augmentation surgery is important. You should have high-protein, low-sodium meals that include lots of fresh fruits and vegetables. Be sure to drink plenty of water and decaffeinated drinks. Try to avoid foods and beverages that contain too much salt and sugar.
Wearing clothes that open the front for the first few days after breast augmentation surgery will be easier for you. Wearing comfortable footwear may also help with healing, since you no longer have to bend over to tie or pull hard. The surgeon will tell you if you need a bra after surgery on the day of surgery.
Returning to sports and exercise after breast augmentation surgery
Although you need to rest after breast augmentation surgery, it is important that you do not stay in bed all day. Even if you have surgery on your chest, a daily walk can sometimes help prevent blood clots in your legs. While you need to keep yourself moving a little, you should only return to regular exercise with the recommendation of your surgeon. The following is a comprehensive guideline for returning to exercise after breast augmentation surgery:
Week 1 – 3
Don’t exercise at all. Even minor aerobic exercise can lead to increased swelling and longer recovery time.
Week 3 – 6
You can start sports such as cycling that do not practice strenuous exercise.
After 6 weeks
Six weeks after breast augmentation surgery, you can resume exercise.
Wearing Bras After Breast Augmentation Surgery
After breast enlargement surgery, you will have to wear a compressive and absorbent dress 2 to 5 weeks after the operation. The amount of time you have to wear this “healing bra” depends on the advice of your surgeon. Compressive clothing is very important in the early days of post-operative breast care because it helps reduce swelling and bruising and helps you achieve the best possible results.
Wound Care after Breast augmentation Surgery
There are several different ways your surgeon can help you heal after a breast augmentation surgery. This includes:
Massage – After the wound is healed, you can gently massage your breasts, preferably with a cream or oil.
Cream / Gel / Silicone Sheets – Your surgeon may help you 6 to 12 months after your wounds heal with a silicone-based product to help scars disappear.
Avoid exposing your wounds to sunshine or sunscreen and use a strong sunscreen to protect the skin and prevent the darkening of the area.
In particular, your surgeon will advise you on how to care for wounds.
Breast Augmentation Surgery Results
Although there is an immediate difference in the size of your breasts after breast augmentation surgery, it may take 2 to 9 months for you to see the full beauty results of your breast enlargement. Inflation and some minor differences in their shape may last up to 9 months. Keep in mind that exact recovery times are different for each case. The timing varies for each patient, and each surgeon offers different recommendations and schedules. Therefore, it is important to follow all the post-operative recommendations.
Frequently Asked Questions about Breast Augmentation Surgery
How long should I take leave of work after breast enlargement surgery?
It depends on the type of work you do. If your job involves a lot of physical activity, you should have at least one week off. If you don’t have much activity, you only need 4 to 5 days off. In either case, you should avoid light tasks for at least 1 to 2 weeks.
Will Breast Enlargement Affect My Ability to Breastfeed?
Some women have trouble breastfeeding after breast enlargement but this is unusual. Cutting under the breast or armpits does not damage to the lactating ducts, glands or nerves. Implants beneath the chest muscle are also unlikely to damage the lymph nodes and nerves.
How long after breastfeeding do I have to wait until I have breast enlargement surgery?
If you are currently breast-feeding, your surgeon may have to stop breast-feeding at least 3 to 6 months before surgery. This allows the breasts to settle well before your operation.
How long after pregnancy do I have to wait until I have breast augmentation surgery?
If you have recently given birth to a baby, your surgeon may ask you to wait 3 to 6 months to have a breast augmentation surgery.
How does a breast implant feel?
Breast implants are designed to look natural to the breasts. It is good to keep in mind that regarding types of breast augmentation techniques silicone gel implants, especially cohesive silicone gels, look and feel more natural than saline implants.
Do I Need a General Practitioner for Breast Augmentation Surgery?
Most cosmetic surgeons want to see you for initial consultation without consulting a physician. But if you plan to go ahead with surgery, your surgeon may contact your treating physician for details of your medical history.
Is breast augmentation surgery covered by the NHS?
Cosmetic surgeries like breast enlargement usually are not covered by the NHS. If you are undergoing lymphectomy or mastectomy to treat breast cancer, you may be eligible for breast reconstruction with the NHS.
What are the effects of drugs and alcohol on breast enlargement?
Smoking, drinking large amounts of alcohol, or recreational drug use increase the risk of complications during and after surgery. Our surgeons strongly recommend stopping smoking and all nicotine-containing products at least six weeks before the surgery.
Do I need additional surgeries after breast augmentation?
For many reasons, more surgeries may be performed. In most cases, surgery may be performed following a complication such as capsular contracture or implant rupture. Some patients also choose another surgery to change the size, shape or type of implant.
Who is not a good candidate for breast enlargement surgery?
Breast enlargement may not be recommended for women who have the following conditions:
Have an active infection
Active Cancer or a history of cancer with no adequate treatment
You are pregnant or a breastfeeding
Breast augmentation surgery may impair the treatment of infection or cancer. It may also endanger the safety of the baby during pregnancy.
What will be the effect of weight gain or weight loss after breast augmentation surgery?
Weight loss or weight gain may affect the appearance of your breast. Severe weight gain results in little effect on implant size. The effect of drastic weight loss will be more pronounced. The effect of weight loss or gain varies between individuals.