Why Breast Implants?
Breast surgery has undergone an evolution, which no longer restricts it to women who solely elect to increase their breast size. The largest group opting to undergo breast augmentation are women 30 to 39 years of age. Many of these women are unhappy with loss of breast volume (i.e., sagging breasts) after pregnancy or significant weight loss. Other women have one breast noticeably larger than the other and choose breast implants to correct the asymmetry. Some women also choose breast implants as part of breast reconstruction after a mastectomy for actual cancer or the threat of cancer.
How Should You Prepare for Breast Augmentation?
Breast augmentation does require some preparation on your part. For maximum healing, all women should cease smoking at least 2 to 4 weeks before surgery and after surgery until they are completely healed. To decrease the risk of bleeding, aspirin and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication, as well as supplements such as fish oil, garlic, and vitamin E, should be discontinued at least 2 weeks before surgery.
A few days before the procedure, you should get your pain medication prescription filled. Excessive alcohol is not a good idea the night before breast surgery, as it will interfere with a good night’s rest. You should eat a light meal the night prior to surgery, and it’s imperative to not eat or drink anything after midnight. The morning of surgery, many physicians require cleansing with Hibiclens® or Betadine®. Do not apply any body lotion, antiperspirant/deodorant, makeup, hairspray, or powder after bathing. Lastly, wear comfortable, non-restrictive clothing, and arrive early at the hospital or surgical center.
What to Expect During and After Breast Surgery
At Precision MD, intravenous (IV) conscious, or “awake,” sedation with local anesthesia is utilized to minimize risk during surgery and downtime after surgery. Your surgeon makes an incision in the natural crease just below each breast. Afterwards, a pocket is fashioned under the pectoral muscle of each breast to receive your breast implants. Finally, the incisions are closed. You should expect some tightness in the chest muscles as well as soreness and swelling. You may also experience headache, nausea/vomiting, and memories of your surgery. You may return to work in 7 to 10 days, but will be advised to not do any heavy lifting or strenuous exercise for 4 to 6 weeks. It should be noted that women who are not candidates for or do not desire breast implants may be candidates for the less invasive Vampire Breast Lift®, which some consider a natural breast lift.
What Are the Results and How Long Do They Last?
As swelling subsides and the pectoral muscles relax, the projection of the breast as well as its shape improves. The final result can take 3 to 6 months.
Today, there are two types of breast implants—saline and silicone—each with their own advantages and disadvantages. Since both types of breast implants are synthetic, they have a limited lifespan. Many manufacturers provide a 10-year warranty on breast implants, which leads many to believe they should be replaced every 10 years. This is not a hard and fast rule as some implants may last 25 years (rare), while others may need replacing only after a few years. Breast implants may need replacing for varied reasons such as rupture/leakage, hardening, and malposition.