What is Breast Augmentation?
Breast augmentation can be misunderstood, equating it to some sort of centerfold end result. But most of our breast augmentation patients at Saltz Plastic Surgery in Salt Lake City and Park City seek natural looking results, not over-the-top transformations. These women want to enhance their breasts in a natural, proportionate way. The goal may be to improve breasts that the patient has always found to be deficient in some way. Or, the goal can be to restore volume and shape after pregnancy or weight loss.
Decisions to Make Before Breast Augmentation Surgery
Long before any surgery, you will meet with Dr. Saltz for an extensive consultation. This meeting will discuss your goals and expectations for breast augmentation, along with your medical history. It’s wise to have done some research on your own prior to your first consultation, looking at before-and-after photos for body types similar to yours.
Once you decide to have breast augmentation surgery, you’ll have three other decisions to make, which Dr. Saltz will, of course, help you with. Those decisions are breast implant type, size and shape, as well as incision location.
Types of Breast Implants
The choice of breast implants for breast augmentation surgery is a personal one, depending on a variety of factors.
Silicone Gel Breast Implants
Silicone breast implants feature a silicone shell filled with medical silicone gel. You can choose different levels of cohesion in the gel. The overall consensus is that silicone feels closer to natural tissue than saline implants. Increasing in popularity are “Gummy Bear” implants, which are teardrop shaped and consist of a firmer (think gummy bear) silicone gel. The advantage of this type of gel is that if the implant develops a leak, the silicone is more likely to stay within the implant. That is the disadvantage of traditional silicone implants — the patient doesn’t always know when the implant has ruptured, as the silicone leaks slowly if at all. For that reason, regular mammograms are required with silicone breast implants to check their condition.
Saline Breast Implants
Saline breast implants are made of a silicone shell filled with sterile salt water solution. Unlike silicone implants, saline implants are inserted into place empty and are then filled. This means a smaller incision is required. The benefit of saline is that if an implant should leak, then the salt water will be naturally absorbed by the body posing no risk. The downside is that most people believe saline implants do not feel the same as natural breast tissue.
Sizes & Shapes of Breast Implants
Prior to your breast augmentation surgery, you will also decide on the shape and, of course, the size of your breast implants. Various shapes are available with different projections. The two main shape categories are round or teardrop. Teardrops are often thought to present a more natural shape and are less prone to the rotation once in place.
Determining the appropriate size is crucial to your satisfaction with your breast augmentation. Dr. Saltz believes the best results are proportional to the patient’s anatomic features. We will help you choose the size and projection that fits your goals for your breast augmentation.
Breast Augmentation Incision Options
You’ll also choose where you want your breast implants placed, along with the incision location. This may seem obvious, but it’s not. You can opt to have the breast implants placed either under or on top of the pectoral muscle, and your incisions can be made either along the crease at the bottom of the breast, under the areola, or in the underarm area. By utilizing the underarm (axila) method, there isn’t any scarring on the breasts themselves.
Breast Augmentation Surgery Procedure
Breast augmentation is typically performed as an outpatient procedure. The surgery begins with an incision at the location you’ve chosen. Dr. Saltz then creates a pocket in the tissue either under the pectoral muscle or directly behind the breast tissue over the pectoral muscle. If you are having silicone breast implants, the incision will need to be somewhat longer than for saline implants because silicone implants are inserted filled while saline implants are filled once in place. Once the breast implants are in place, Dr. Saltz will then check the symmetry of the breasts before closing your incisions.
At Saltz Plastic Surgery, we utilize skin glues whenever possible to minimize scarring, and this may be available in your case. Regardless, there will be some scarring (except with axila breast augmentation surgery), but it will fade with time.
Breast Augmentation Recovery
Like any surgery, the recovery time for breast augmentation varies for every patient. Although recovery from the surgery is not difficult, there will be pain and discomfort from two to three days after the procedure. Prescription medication will be provided for pain management. Breast augmentation patients are usually able to return to work after four or five days. After one to two weeks, patients can begin non-impact lower body exercise. Impact exercise can be resumed after four weeks, with upper body exercise following at six weeks.
Your immediate post-operative visits include drain removal, learning how to massage your breasts to keep them soft, and a complimentary lymphatic drainage massage to reduce bruising and swelling. Regular visits to see Dr. Saltz and his nurse will continue until the first anniversary of your breast augmentation.
Breast Augmentation Results
After your breast augmentation surgery, your breast implants can take up to a few weeks before they settle and look natural. At first, you may notice the implants are sitting higher on your chest, feel more firm, or are larger than you expected. You should wait at least three months before your final results are realized. Your implants will drop to sit in a more natural position on your chest and the swelling will pass so you can see the final results of your breast augmentation surgery.
Saltz Plastic Surgery proudly serves patients from Salt Lake City, Park City and surrounding areas, including Evanston and Green River, WY. If you are interested in breast augmentation surgery, contact our Salt Lake City office at (801) 274-9500 or our Park City office at (435) 655-6612. You can also connect with us by filling out our online Contact form here.