Breast Augmentation Perth
Breast augmentation [or breast enhancement surgery] was first done in the nineteenth century by Vincenz Czerny. Breast augmentation surgery is done to enlarge or alter the shape of the breasts. A breast augmentation or augmentation mammoplasty is one of the top five most commonly performed plastic surgery procedures globally.
Many people frequently misconstrue breast augmentation as breast lift, a procedure used to raise sagging breasts by taking out surplus skin and tightening surrounding tissues.
What are the types of breast augmentation?
Most breast augmentation surgeries employ either of two main techniques - fat grafting and implants. Dr Nathan Stewart and his team in Perth will guide you in choosing which is best for you.
- Fat grafting [or fat transfer breast augmentation]: This involves taking fat from fat-rich body parts and using it to augment the volume or change the contour of your breasts. The surgeon uses liposuction to harvest fat tissue from your belly, flanks, or thighs.
- Breast implant augmentation [or breast implants]: Breast implants are prosthetic devices used to enhance the shape or size of a woman’s breast.
There are several types of implants based on form and composition, each with merits and demerits.
- Saline breast implants: Saline implants are filled with sterile saline water and are less expensive. They usually require small incisions, and the body can easily absorb the saline water component in case of an implant rupture.
- Silicone breast implants: These implants contain silicone gel and are usually more expensive than saline implants. However, they look and feel more natural and do not tend to move about or form ripples like traditional saline implants. Silicone implants have different shapes and sizes but require larger incisions and routine post-op checkups.
- Structured saline breast implants: Structured implants combine the safety of traditional saline implants with the natural feeling of silicone implants. They have an enhanced internal framework that helps retain the realistic look and firmness of silicone implants.
Why do women get breast augmentation surgery?
Women usually have breast augmentation surgery for various reasons, including:
- To increase breast fullness.
- For women who wish to have symmetrical breasts.
- To enlarge breast cleavage.
- It can be a part of reconstructive breast surgery following mastectomy.
Preparing for a breast augmentation procedure
Besides helping you identify your needs and treatment goals, your surgeon may ask you to do any of the following:
- Pre-operative assessments: To determine your eligibility for surgery, your surgeon will ask you about previous surgeries, current medications, and history of breast problems. You will also undergo a detailed physical examination and essential laboratory investigations like blood tests and mammograms.
- Stop smoking.
- Stop alcohol consumption.
- Adjust certain routine medications you may be taking.
- Stop medications like aspirin that may increase the risk of bleeding.
It’s also good you inform essential relatives and friends to have sufficient social support during your recovery period.
How is breast augmentation surgery done?
Although there are several different techniques for breast augmentation, critical steps in the surgery include:
- Measurements and markings: The surgical team will measure parameters like breast width and breast soft tissue thickness to precisely determine the site for incision and implant insertion.
- Anaesthesia: This is the part where you receive medications that prevent you from feeling pain during the surgery. Anaesthesiologists can administer regional or general anaesthesia, depending on procedural standards and your body configuration.
- Making the incision: Cosmetic surgeons cut carefully in inconspicuous areas to hide scars and reduce the chances of scar formation. The size and number of incisions made vary, depending on the type of implant, the enhancement you choose and your body anatomy. Incisions could be:
- Around your nipple [periareolar]
- Directly under your breast [inframammary]
- Somewhere in your armpit [transaxillary]
- Around your belly button [transumbilical]
- Inserting the breast implant: Following the appropriate incision, the implant is inserted just beneath the breast tissue or deep under your pectoral muscles.
- Closing the incision: Sutures are usually applied to breast tissue, while the overlying skin is opposed using skin adhesives or surgical tapes. Adhesives and tapes leave little to no scars, depending on your genetics and other skin properties.
What should you expect?
You can appreciate the outcome of a breast augmentation procedure almost immediately after, and recovery is usually uneventful. Most of your surgical scars will disappear as the incision wounds heal. Swelling, bruising and a feeling of sourness may persist for a few weeks. You may also need to support your breasts with compression bandages or a non-wired sports bra for roughly six weeks.
To avoid implant infection and failure, take adequate care of the wound as your plastic surgeon recommends. While your surgeon may encourage early ambulation and regular exercise, do not engage in strenuous physical activities. If you develop a fever or feel something is amiss, call your surgeon immediately.
Recovery after breast augmentation
- Some discomfort and pain are normal. You will be prescribed pain relief medication.
- Do not drive whilst taking prescription medication
- Take it easy for the first few days and get lots of rest, drink plenty of fluids and eat healthy.
- Incisions will be covered with surgical glue and checked in clinic one week after surgery
- Scars will be slightly red for 4 to 6 months and fade over the next 18 months
- Strenuous activity should be restricted for at least 3 weeks
- Compression bra should be worn day and night for the first 6 weeks.
Possible risks associated with breast augmentation
Although breast augmentation surgery has impressive and rapidly improved success and patient satisfaction rates, the procedure still carries some risks. Some of the possible complications of an augmentation mammaplasty include:
- Wound infection which is treated with antibiotics
- Bruising and swelling which subsides in 1 to 2 weeks
- Bleeding from the wound
- Poor or slow healing of the skin
- Symmastia is a rare complication where both breasts fuse with no cleavage.
- Abnormal scar or contracture formation, especially in genetically susceptible individuals.
- Blood clot which can move to the heart or lungs causing life threatening conditions
- Abnormal scarring of the incision, such as a keloid scar which may be itchy and tender
- Accumulation of blood or fluid around the implant
- Capsular contracture (scar tissue around the implant) can develop over time
- Changes in sensation around the nipple, areolar and skin
- Lumps or cysts can form
- Leakage or breakage of implants
- Implants can move or rotate causing discomfort and distortion in breast shape
- Implants can interfere with the detection of breast cancer and mammography is not recommended
Why choose Dr Nathan Stewart?
You need a board-certified plastic surgeon like Dr Nathan Stewart in Perth to help reduce your chances of experiencing these dangerous complications. He is a fellow of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons [FRACS] in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery and is currently a Consultant Specialist Plastic Surgeon at the Royal Perth Hospital and Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital. Dr Stewart also consults in Bunbury at Saint John of God Bunbury Specialist Centre. Contact Dr Stewart and his team in Perth today to book a consultation.
Breast Augmentation FAQs
What is breast augmentation?
Breast augmentation is a cosmetic surgical procedure to increase the size, fullness, or shape of the breasts.
Who is a good candidate for breast augmentation?
Good candidates for breast augmentation are healthy women who have realistic expectations and wish to increase the volume of their breasts.
What type of implant is best for me?
The type of implant that is best for you will depend on your individual goals and anatomy. Options include smooth or textured implants, round or teardrop shaped. Dr Stewart will discuss with you the choices after taking into account your desired results.
Will I have scars after my breast augmentation?
Yes, a breast augmentation procedure involves making an incision, so there will be a scar. The scar is typically located in a place where it is easily concealed, usually just under the breast.
How long is the recovery period?
Recovery time after breast augmentation varies for each individual, but patients can usually return to normal activities within 1-2 weeks. Exercise is typically ok after 6 weeks.
Will I be able to breastfeed after breast augmentation?
There is no guarantee that you will be able to breastfeed after a breast augmentation, as the procedure can affect the milk ducts and nerves in the breast. Typically this is unaffected, and Dr Stewart can discuss with you in detail the risks involved.
How long do breast implants last?
The lifespan of breast implants varies, but on average, they need to be replaced every 10-15 years.
Is breast augmentation surgery painful?
Breast augmentation surgery is typically performed with general anesthesia and patients may experience some discomfort and pain during the recovery period. Pain can be managed with prescribed medications.
Can breast implants be removed?
Yes, breast implants can be removed if desired or if a complication arises. Dr Stewart can discuss your options with you.
Taking care of yourself after surgery
After any kind of breast surgery, it is important you take as much time as you need to rest and recover. You will be provided with a number of information sheets and checklists to prepare you for your recovery, including any symptoms to watch out for and tips to keep you as healthy and comfortable as possible during this time.
Following the procedure, you will likely experience some moderate discomfort, as well as bruising or tenderness. Dr Stewart will discuss your pain medication needs with you and tailor a dosage and schedule to suit your individual circumstances. Most symptoms will settle within 4 – 6 weeks.
Should you have any questions at any time, please don’t hesitate to contact Dr Stewart or the team.