Breast augmentation surgery uses prosthetic implants to increase the size of a woman’s breast. This procedure is performed for a variety of reasons: enlarging breasts that have little or no tissue, enhancing the shape of the breast for a more feminine appearance, replacing breast volume that may have been lost after nursing or pregnancy, and correcting asymmetry that may have resulted from underdevelopment of one or both breasts.
Breast augmentation is the number one surgical procedure among plastic surgery patients and has one of the highest satisfaction rates among all operations. Most women are very satisfied with the results of having a breast augmentation and would recommend it for a friend or family member. In addition to restoring lost volume and creating a more youthful, feminine appearance, this procedure can have a very positive impact on a patient’s confidence and self-esteem.
There are a number of different incisions that can be used to perform a breast augmentation, as well different spaces within the breast to place the implant. There are several types of implants to choose from, which differ in size, shape, composition and profile. Dr. Parson understands and appreciates that not every patient is the same, so not every patient should receive the same exact method of surgery.
Dr. Parson varies his incisional approach depending on each individual. Each plastic surgeon has their preferred method for incision, but not one way is correct all of the time. If a patient does not require a lift, there are generally three ways the surgeon can make the incision:
Each incision has its advantages and disadvantages. You and Dr. Parson will discuss all of these approaches and find the one that works best for you and your body.
In the U.S. we have two types of implants available for use – saline and silicone. Saline implants have been available for use for several decades, while silicone implants were re-approved for general use by the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) in November of 2006. The FDA approved silicone implants after vigorous research and testing by independent panels of experts in the field. The FDA recommends that women be over the age of 22 to receive silicone implants, although they may be used at a younger age for reconstructive or symmetry purposes.
Silicone implants have different cohesive levels, the grading of which increases as the cohesive level increases. The most common cohesive levels are the Cohesive Level II and III. The “gummy bear” implants, which became available in the U.S. in May of 2013, are a Cohesive Level III, the firmest level.
Implants are measured in cc’s (cubic centimeters) of how much saline or silicone volume the implant contains. Size is one of the variables of breast implants.
Other variables that you will discuss with Dr. Shaun Parson at your consultation include:
It is preferred that women have completed growth and that their breasts have developed prior to undergoing breast augmentation for the best possible result. Therefore, breast augmentation may not be suitable for women under 18.
There are two spaces in which to place the breast implant during breast augmentation surgery. The implant can be placed below the breast, but still remain on top of the pectoralis muscle. The second method is to place the implant beneath both the breast and the pectoralis muscle. There are reasons for performing the surgery both ways, but Dr. Parson tends to recommend the “below muscle” location for the majority of his patients.
When the implant is placed above the muscle, it is less painful, and therefore, recovery is faster and the appearance of the implanted breast matures more quickly. This method is advantageous for bodybuilders, where contraction of the pectoralis muscle has no bearing on the appearance of the augmented breast.
When the implant is placed below the muscle, this lends itself to a more natural-appearing transition of the implant to the native breast, creating less of a “shelf-like” appearance. Although, there is more initial discomfort with this placement, advantages include a lower risk of visible rippling or wrinkling of the implant, decrease rate of scarring (capsular contracture) around the implant, and increased visibility during mammograms because of the technician’s ability to displace the implant from breast tissue.
Breast augmentation is a comprehensive procedure that can help women regain the youthful contours they desire. If you are unhappy with the appearance of your breasts and would like to learn more about breast augmentation, contact Dr. Parson’s office today.
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