Breast augmentation is a surgical procedure to increase size of the breast. Some women undergo breast augmentation as a part of treatment after breast cancer surgery. They opt for breast reconstruction using breast augmentation or augmentation mammoplasty. Other women choose breast augmentation to enhance their body image and boost self-confidence by increasing their breast size, or some women undergo breast augmentation to correct deformed breasts or breasts that are not uniform in size and shape.
Breast feeding and pregnancy can sometimes cause changes to the size and shape of breasts, which can be corrected with a breast augmentation surgery.
Breast implants are medical devices that are implanted under the breast tissue or sometimes under the chest muscle during breast augmentation procedure. Two types of breast implants are FDA-approved, i.e. saline-filled, and silicone gel-filled. Both the implants have a silicone outer shell. They vary in size, and shape. FDA-approved implants are used for increasing the size of the breast, for breast reconstruction after cancer or trauma, or to correct deformities. Clinical studies have reported that most patients who undergo breast augmentation and reconstruction are satisfied with the surgical results – and yet independent studies show that at least 30% of all patients end up having the implants removed at some point or another.
Breast augmentation makes the breasts look fuller by enhancing their shape and boost self-confidence in women who are unhappy with the shape of their breasts.
How long will the results last after a breast augmentation?
The outcome of breast augmentation is long-lasting except if there is an adverse event in which the implant deflates requiring another surgery to replace the damaged implant with a new implant.
Risks of breast augmentation
Breast augmentation is a surgical procedure that has the normal surgical risks in addition to some specific risks that include:
- Slow healing process
- Changes in nipple or breast sensation
- Scar tissue formation around the implant
- Implant leakage or rupture
- Skin wrinkling
- Risks of anesthesia
- Fluid accumulation
- Blood clots
- Persistent pain
- Deep vein thrombosis
- Cardiac and pulmonary complications
- Chances of re-operation
What to expect at your surgical consultation
When you consult with a surgeon to discuss breast augmentation procedure, you should be prepared to candidly discuss all questions, for example:
- Why do want to undergo breast augmentation surgery, and what are your expectations
- Give a detailed medical history, and family history
- List your surgical history, allergies, medications
- Give your family history of breast cancer, if any
The surgeon will discuss the risks, benefits, and other specifics of the surgery with you, and:
- Get a complete health evaluation
- Physically examine your breasts to determine if you are a suitable candidate for breast augmentation
- Discuss your surgical options and treatment course
- Discuss outcomes and potential complications of surgery
- Discuss anesthetic use for the procedure