What is Breast Augmentation?
Breast implant surgery, also known as augmentation mammaplasty, is a cosmetic surgery procedure to enlarge the size and enhance the shape of a woman’s breast. Women seek to enlarge their breasts for many reasons. Women with small breasts, women who have lost breast volume after pregnancy, after weight loss or as they age, or women who have differences in size between the right and left breasts may be candidates for breast augmentation. Breast sagging can be treated at the same time with a breast lift.
Types of Breast Implants, Incisions, and Placement
This type of plastic surgery uses breast implants to produce the results. Salt-water solution implants, known as saline implants and silicone gel-filled implants can be used. A woman must be at least 22 years old to undergo augmentation with silicone gel. Houston plastic surgeon Dr. Wiener uses round, smooth moderate profile implants for both saline and silicone gel. The decision for size is done through a combination of trying on actual breast implants in a bra at the time of the consultation along with comparing the implant diameter to the breast diameter. An implant that is excessively large or small in comparison to the breast can create problems. The incisions used by Dr. Wiener are the inframammary (in the breast crease) or periareolar (at the lower border of the nipple-areola) and Dr. Wiener, based on his published research, strongly recommends the incision in the breast crease because of a decreased risk of capsular contracture or abnormal hardening of the scar tissue around the implant. The implant is placed either above or below the chest muscle, and Dr. Wiener recommends a below the muscle placement. It is important to realize that when the breasts are enlarged, certain differences from one breast to the other will also be increased, such as differences in the height or sideways pointing of the nipple and breast. Although Dr. Wiener may place somewhat different volumes from one breast to the other, decided upon at the time of surgery, the different volumes placed will not necessarily give the appearance of same size breasts due to other anatomic differences that are present.
How is Breast Augmentation Done?
In Dr. Wiener’s AAAASF accredited in-office operating room, a board certified physician anesthesiologist will administer intravenous anesthesia. Dr. Wiener then places local anesthetic nerve blocks around the ribs which helps to reduce the amount of anesthetic that you need to receive and also gives significant postoperative pain relief.
The incision is made, and a pocket, or space, is made underneath the pectoralis (chest) muscle. A sizer is used to check the pocket, then the actual implants are placed and size symmetry is checked. The incisions are then sutured with absorbable sutures, and you go to the recovery room.
Breast Implant Surgery Risks
Breast augmentation is a relatively safe procedure. However, like any surgical procedure, there are certain risks and specific complications associated with this procedure that Dr. Wiener will discuss with you. You can help minimize risks by a complete disclosure of your medical history and medications at the time of consultation.
Breast augmentation may make it technically more difficult to get or read mammograms, and special mammogram views or extra examinations by ultrasound may be needed for patients with breast implants.
Your Day of Breast Augmentation Surgery
Wear loose clothing that is easy to put on and take off. The surgery usually takes 1 hour to complete. The recovery room time is brief because of the advantages of the intravenous anesthesia and local anesthetic nerve blocks.
Most patients will be able to return to work within a few days, depending on the nature of their job.
Dr. Wiener’s office is located in Clear Lake. Conveniently located near Houston, Pearland, Friendswood, and Galveston.