So you’ve finally decided to undergo a breast augmentation to regain those shapely breasts you’ve once had. It’s time to meet with your plastic surgeon, but you’re not sure what to ask? Here’s 10 best questions to ask your plastic surgeon before a breast augmentation, to ensure you get the best results possible.
1. Are you certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery?
You want to ensure that the plastic surgeon you choose is certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS). Surgeons that are ABPS members have undergone the requisite two to three years of training in plastic surgery. As well, they have three to five years of training in general surgery. Therefore, they have the necessary skill and competence, and are better equipped to handle any complications that may arise.
2. What type of breast implants are you recommending for me and why?
There are two main types of implants, silicone and saline, and they are available in varying sizes, shapes, and textures. The choice of implants can impact the outcome of the breast augmentation procedure. There are several variables to consider when determining the type of implants; these include your height, weight, the amount of existing breast tissue, and your aesthetic goals. Choosing the wrong implants can make the breasts look fake and unnatural after the procedure.
3. Will the implants feel natural and will they affect nipple sensation?
Women that have had both silicone and saline breast implants, agree that the soft silicone filling of the silicone implants feel a lot like natural breast tissue. Loss of nipple sensation is a risk of breast augmentation. You have to sit down with your plastic surgeon and weigh these and other risks, versus your desire to do the procedure.
4. What type of incision are you recommending for me?
There are several possible incision sites for breast augmentation, but the inframammary incision is by far the most popular. This incision is made below the fold of the breast. Other choices include the periareolar incision (made around the nipple), and the axillary incision (made in the armpit). There is the possibility of breastfeeding difficulties with some incisions, so be sure to discuss this with your plastic surgeon.
5. Which type of breast implant placement do you recommend?
Breast implants can either be placed below the pectoralis major muscle, or above the muscle and below the breast tissue. Some doctors prefer the subpectoral method because it makes the breasts appear more natural, and there is no difficulty when viewing images by mammography.
6. How can I tell if my breast implant has ruptured?
It’s easy to tell when a rupture has occurred with saline implants, because the sterile salt water leaks from the shell and the breasts will deflate. However, it is not easy to detect if a silicone breast implant has ruptured. Some patients notice increased firmness of the breasts, while others experience pain, tingling, burning, or tenderness of the breasts. The only way to confirm if a rupture has in fact occurred with a silicone implant, is to do an MRI screening.
7. What are the risks associated with breast augmentation surgery?
Capsular contracture is one of the most common risks of breast enhancement. It is a condition in which the tissue capsule that the body forms naturally around the breast implant tightens for some reason, resulting in the hardening of the breast. Other risks include breast pain, asymmetry, and deflation.
8. How long do breast implants last?
This varies according to the individual, but implants tend to last about 10 years on average. Be aware that breast implants do not last a lifetime and will need to be replaced at some time.
9. What can I do to maintain the appearance of the breasts over time?
Avoid serious weight fluctuation and give your breasts the proper bra support.
10. Can I view before-and-after photographs of past patients?
These before and after photographs are the only evidence you have to indicate whether or not your surgeon will be able to provide the natural looking results you desire.