augmentation, also known as mammoplasty, is a surgical procedure
performed to enhance the shape and size of a woman’s breasts, using
breast implants. This procedure can help to make the breasts more
proportionate to the rest of the body, even out breasts which are
different in size or shape, and it can enlarge and reshape breasts which
have lost their fullness or shape due to weight loss, pregnancy, breast
feeding, or age. Breast augmentation can also be used for
reconstructive purposes on patients who have undergone mastectomy or
those with a congenital breast deformity.
has indicated that the best candidate for breast augmentation is a woman
over the age of 18 who is unhappy with her breast size or shape and
looking to enhance their appearance. Patients must be psychologically
stable, physically healthy, and have realistic expectations. Breast
augmentation can enhance the look of the breasts, and often has the
added benefit of increasing one’s self confidence.
Breast augmentation typically takes between one to three hours to
complete and may be performed under general anesthesia or a combination
of local anesthesia and sedation.
There are several different possible locations for the incisions:
axillary, which is under the armpit, inframmary, which is within the
crease below the breast; and periareolar, which is around the nipple.
Once the incision is made, the breast tissue is lifted to make a space
or pocket into which the implant is then inserted. The implant may be
placed in one of two locations: subglandular, which is above the chest
muscle, or submuscular, which is beneath the chest muscle. The implant
is typically a silicone shell that is usually filled with a saline
solution. Most implants are inserted empty and then filled, allowing
for minimal scarring. After the implant is inserted, the incisions are
then closed. Tape may be used for added support and the breasts may
also be wrapped with gauze or other bandages. A drainage tube may be
placed at the incision site if necessary in order to drain fluid.
Breast augmentation involves many different options and techniques.
Choices must be made about the incision location and the implant
placement. The choices that are right for you will depend upon your
individual circumstances, and, thus, are best made with the help of
In terms of incision placement, the axillary and inframmary placements
are typically associated with fewer complications with future breast
feeding, though both of these placements do produce a visible, though
small, scar. The periareolar placement involves a less visible scar,
but it is associated with an increase in breast feeding complications.
There is also a fourth placement, known as the umbilical or endoscopic
placement, which involves the placement of the implant through the naval
or belly button, though this is a relatively new technique, and
generally not recommended.
Regarding placement of the implant, there is a choice between
subglandular and submuscular. For the subglandular placement, the
implants are placed above the chest muscle. Though this placement
typically involves shorter surgery and recovery times, less pain and
easier accessibility in case of reoperation, it may also involve an
increased risk of implant palpability, capsular contracture, and
On the other hand, submuscular placement, or beneath the chest muscle,
typically involves a decreased risk of capsular contracture, implant
palpability, and mammography interference. However, this placement is
also associated with longer surgery and recovery times, more pain, and
less accessibility in case of reoperation.
After surgery, patients often feel somewhat sore, tired and stiff, which
can last for several days. Some degree of pain is usually experienced
because the procedure stretches the tissues, though the submuscular
placement of the implants is typically associated with more pain.
Prescribed pain medication can help alleviate any pain or discomfort you
may also request that you keep your arm extensions to a minimum, raising
your elbows no higher than your armpit, for three to five days after
few days after surgery, any bandages that were applied are usually
removed. Many times, patients are required to wear a support bra or
compression bandage to help support and position the breasts. Drainage
tubes, if used, are usually removed within a day or two after surgery.
Sutures are usually removed within a week to ten days after surgery.
The breasts may feel tight at first as the skin adjusts to the new
breast size, and the breasts themselves may seem hard at first, though
they do soften in time. Swelling is common and usually begins to fade
within a few weeks. Increased sensitivity to physical contact of the
breasts may occur for a month or longer. The scars will be pink right
after surgery and for several weeks, but will fade over a period of
The amount of time it takes to recover will be different for each
patient and for each technique. However, most patients find that they
can return to work a few days after surgery. Nonetheless, you will need
to refrain from overly strenuous activities for several weeks.
RISKS AND COMPLICATIONS
All surgery carries some degree of risk. However, there are certain
factors which increase your risk of complications. Be sure to inform
of any medical conditions that you have, if you smoke, if you are on any
medications, and if you have had any previous surgeries near the site to
be treated. You can greatly reduce these risks by carefully following
all pre and post surgery instructions provided by
If you have been considering enhancing your breast through enlargements,
we encourage you to contact our office today. Call
Connecticut (CT) conveniently near from
Hartford, CT and the
New York Area.