Many women are unhappy with the look and feel of their breasts. Whether you're bothered by uneven breasts, recovering from breast cancer or would simply like your breasts to be bigger, our board-certified plastic surgeon can help build your self-confidence and give you the breast shape and size you've been wanting with breast augmentation surgery.
Find out all about breast augmentation here:
- What is Breast Augmentation?
- Who is a Candidate for Breast Augmentation?
- What Types of Breast Augmentation Incisions are Available?
- Where Can Breast implants Be Placed?
- Breast Augmentation Scarring
- Treating Excessive Scarring
- What’s the Difference Between Breast Augmentation and a Breast Lift?
- How Long is Breast Augmentation Recovery?
- Breast Augmentation Surgery Risks
- What is Capsular Contracture?
- Classifying Capsular Contractures
- Preventing Capsular Contracture
- When to Call the Doctor After Breast Augmentation Surgery
- Breast Health Before and After Breast Augmentation Surgery
- How Much Does Breast Augmentation Cost?
- How Long Does Breast Augmentation Last?
- Contact Our Plastic Surgeon for Your Breast Augmentation Procedure
If you're not satisfied with the appearance of your breasts, please contact Dr. Paul Angelchik in Glendale at (602) 761-7887 to schedule your free consultation today. Our office serves clients in the Glendale, Phoenix and Scottsdale, Arizona areas.
What is Breast Augmentation?
Breast augmentation surgery can enhance, reduce or reconstruct your breasts and involves an array of procedures. Breast cancer survivors regularly consider breast reconstruction after having a mastectomy to get rid of cancer cells, and a percentage of men who develop breasts due to a hormone imbalance often undergo gynecomastia, also known as male breast reduction. Disproportionate breasts can have an impact on your body image as well and cause you to look into plastic surgery. Other breast augmentation variations include:
Some women have a breast lift done in conjunction with a breast augmentation in order to reverse the drooping and sagging effects that aging and pregnancy have on the breasts.
Who is a Candidate for Breast Augmentation?
The ideal candidate for breast augmentation is a fully developed woman in good health that is also the following:
- The proper legal age: 18 for saline implants, 22 for silicone
- In good overall health with no active infections
- Not pregnant or planning on becoming pregnant in the near future
- Ideally a non-smoker or willing to give up smoking for a certain amount of time before and after the procedure
What Types of Breast Augmentation Incisions are Available?
There are four options available to you, which depend on the type of implant used (silicone or saline) and what type of incision you will receive. This depends on your desired results.
- Inframammary – Incision is made along the lower crease of the breast. Dr. Angelchik can access the breast pocket well with this incision, and it provides optimal control of breast implant placement.
- Periareolar – Incision is made along the edge of the areola. This incision is hidden well by the darker color of your nipple.
- Transaxillary – Incision is made in the armpit to reduce scarring; this is done with saline implants using an endoscope
- Transumbilical augmentation (TUBA) – Incision is made in the navel where implants are placed using an endoscope
Where Can Breast Implants Be Placed?
Placement of breast implants is commonly:
- Subpectoral – The implant is placed partially or totally beneath the pectoralis major, the muscles of the chest. The advantages of this type of placement are a more natural look and feel, a smaller chance of interfering with a mammogram, and a lesser chance of the implant drooping.
- Subglandular – The implant is placed above the muscle, but still lies below the breast tissue. This allows for a larger implant, with more lift, and a shorter recovery time.
- Dual–Plane – The implant is placed beneath the muscle in the upper pole of the breast and in the subglandular position in the lower pole to enhance lower pole shape and fill for patients with specific lower pole shape issues like pseudoptosis or tubular breasts.
Breast Augmentation Scarring
When the body attempts to heal a cut, burn, or any other type of wound, it produces excessive collagen – a fibrous protein in your skin that is used to connect and support other tissues. An enzyme called collagenase keeps the production of this collagen in check, melting away the excess. During your initial healing process, it is the interaction of these two substances that will determine the nature and extent of your scarring.
After surgery, Dr. Angelchik will provide you with a list of post-surgical care instructions; when carefully followed, these will help you limit the risk of severe scarring and other complications. For example, leaving the surgical adhesive that was applied in the operating room over your incisions for the prescribed amount of time will help reduce the amount of tension around the incision site, preventing the chances of the wound re-opening.
Treating Excessive Scarring
Even when every possible precaution has been taken, it is still possible – though rare – for severe scarring to occur after breast augmentation. This might be the result of several factors, including:
- Specific medical conditions
- Overall health
If you are dissatisfied with the appearance of your post-surgical scars, Dr. Angelchik offers various treatments to help diminish their appearance, such as injectables and laser skin treatments.
What’s the Difference Between Breast Augmentation and a Breast Lift?
While breast augmentation is designed to increase or decrease the size of your breasts, a breast lift (mastopexy) is simply a procedure to bring back the perky, full shape your breasts had when you were younger. Mastopexy can bring back the perky, full shape your breasts had when you were younger. A breast lift is one way to regain your youthful figure, and can even be combined with breast augmentation for an even more amazing transformation.
Older women concerned about the safety of breast implants and breast augmentation surgery may find a breast lift to be an enticing alternative. Even though it does not involve implants, a breast lift can make formerly sagging breasts seem larger than before.
How Long is Breast Augmentation Recovery?
Recovery is different for every woman. You may experience pain and soreness, or you may only experience discomfort as you heal. It usually takes three to five weeks to completely recover from this procedure and get back to your normal routine. You will wear a dressing and elastic bandage for about a week after your procedure, but will be up and about within a couple of days. You must avoid any strenuous activity or heavy lifting for four to six weeks after your procedure. You will be prescribed pain medication to help you with the healing process, but this should dissipate after a couple of weeks. Bruising and swelling is to be expected, but this too will disappear. Scarring will fade over time, and may only be noticeable upon close examination after a while.
Breast Augmentation Surgery Risks
Complications are rare, but this is a type of surgery, so there is a small amount of risk. The main complications seen after breast augmentation are:
- Capsular contracture
- Changes in nipple/breast sensation
- Dissatisfaction with cosmetic results
- Implant deflation
- Tissue necrosis
What is Capsular Contracture?
When a foreign object – such as a breast implant – is placed inside of your body, the body’s natural response is to form scar tissue around the material to protect itself. Unless it tightens, this scar tissue is not a problem. Usually, the pocket of fibrous tissue (termed a “capsule”) surrounding the breast implant remains partially open, allowing your breast implants to look and feel natural.
Unfortunately, if this capsule closes or tightens, it can squeeze the breast implants, causing your breasts to feel firm or even painful. This complication is termed a “capsular contracture.”
Classifying Capsular Contractures
Plastic surgeons categorize capsular contractures according to severity. The main classifications are as follows:
- Grade I (None) – No capsular contracture.
- Grade II (Mild) – The breast feels firm to the touch, and the edges of the implant can be felt through the skin.
- Grade III (Moderate) – The edges of the implant can be visually seen through the skin. The breast may also appear abnormally round or spherical.
- Grade IV (Severe) – The breast is distorted, hard, and painful due to significant tightening of the scar tissue.
Capsular contractures that occur in the first year following breast augmentation are deemed “early.” In general, early capsular contractures are thought to be the result of natural skin bacterium called staph epidermidis. This bacteria is present on every person’s skin, and although it is normally benign, it can potentially contaminate an implant during the surgical process. Dr. Angelchik uses meticulous techniques to maintain sterility while your implants are being placed.
Late capsular contractures can occur several years after breast augmentation, and are usually the result of a silicone implant rupture. The scar tissue surrounding a silicone implant can become inflamed if the silicone gel extrudes through the implant shell.
Preventing Capsular Contracture
One of the ways you can help avoid capsular contracture is by performing certain implant exercises – called displacement exercises – that help stretch your internal scar tissue. Dr. Angelchik will inform you when it is safe to begin performing these exercises after surgery. Wearing a compression bra following surgery also helps, as well as receiving regular massages. Dr. Angelchik will work with you throughout your recovery process to help you mitigate any chance of early capsular contracture.
When to Call the Doctor After Breast Augmentation Surgery
These risks can be further minimized with proper postoperative care, and following Dr. Angelchik's instructions. However, you need to let the doctor know if any of the following develop:
- Excessive constipation or pain in defecating or urinating
- Excessive bleeding, pus, or cloudy discharge from incisions or nipples
- Painful swelling involving one or both breasts that develops rapidly
- Foul odor emanating from the incisions or nipples
- Numbness in your extremities
- Skin discoloration (other than bruising, which is normal)
- Uncontrollable pain that worsens or does not improve
- Vomiting or sudden loss of consciousness not related to medications
Breast Health Before and After Breast Augmentation Surgery
Many things that are damaging to your general health can also adversely affect your breasts. A healthy diet and regular exercise will go a long way to keeping your breasts healthy. Stress, on the other hand, can be bad for you and bad for your breasts. One of the worst things for your breasts is yo-yo dieting. When you gain and lose weight, your breasts will grow and shrink accordingly, which can reduce skin elasticity and breast fullness. Some other tips to keeping your breasts healthy before and after surgery include the following:
- Quit smoking
- Moisturize your skin and use sunscreen
- Use a properly-supportive bra to combat the effects of gravity on your breasts
- Support your breasts during exercise
- Get regular breast exams
- Get regular mammograms from the age of 40 and beyond
How Much Does Breast Augmentation Cost?
Breast augmentation, like all plastic surgery procedures, is truly a “you-get-what-you-pay-for scenario.” By having a board-certified plastic surgeon, such as Dr. Paul Angelchik, perform your breast augmentation, you can rest assured you are in the best possible hands.
Board-certified training and skill are important in that a successful outcome for your breast augmentation is more likely than it might otherwise be. As a result of this training, the cost of the breast augmentation procedure may be higher.
Your breast augmentation cost will vary based upon the following:
- Type of surgery you choose
- Type of implant you select
- Type of incision required
- Amount of volume added or removed
- Your age
- Your level of health
Dr. Angelchik offers financing options so you can achieve your aesthetic goals no matter your financial situation.
How Long Does Breast Augmentation Last?
The results of a breast augmentation procedure are long-term. It's reasonable to expect your implants to last anywhere between 10 and 25 years, but there is no predetermined expiration date. However, breast augmentation surgeries can be altered by the following:
- Excessive weight gain causing sagginess
- Implant rupture
- Rippled implant
- Capsular contracture
- Sagging breast tissue caused by age
Contact Our Plastic Surgeon for Your Breast Augmentation Procedure
If you're interested in breast augmentation, please contact our Board-Certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Angelchik, in Glendale today at (602) 761-7887 to schedule your consultation. Our office provides excellent plastic surgery to clients in the Glendale, Phoenix, Tempe, Scottsdale, Mesa, Surprise and Peoria areas of Arizona.