Brittany, a 36-year-old mother of two and a resident of Charleston, underwent a Mommy Makeover at Crantford | Costa Plastic Surgery to regain her confidence and physical appearance. This is her story.

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Breast augmentation is the most frequently performed cosmetic surgery procedure in the United States. It can give women with small or unevenly-sized breasts a firmer, fuller, better-proportioned look through the use of breast implants. The patient's bustline may be increased by one or more cup sizes. As one of our most versatile procedures, breast augmentation offers a range of choices and benefits for women who would like to revitalize the appearance of their breasts. Every breast surgery is carefully tailored to the patient’s unique anatomy, goals and preferences, helping to ensure natural results and a high rate of satisfaction.

Having cosmetic surgery is a big decision, and it’s important to be fully informed. Our Charleston plastic surgeons can answer any questions you may have about breast augmentation so you can make the best choices for your body. Contact Crantford | Costa Plastic Surgery to request a consultation today.

Breast Augmentation

Why Consider Breast Augmentation?

Women may elect to undergo breast augmentation for many different medical and aesthetic reasons. Some women have always been dissatisfied with the size or shape of their breasts. Others feel self-conscious about the ways their breasts have changed over time. You may wish to consider breast augmentation surgery if:

  • You would like larger breasts and/or more prominent cleavage
  • You want to restore your breast size and shape after pregnancy, weight loss or surgery
  • You want to reverse the impact of age-related volume loss on your breasts
  • You are unhappy due to asymmetry in your breasts
  • You want to feel more feminine
  • You want to feel more confident in clothes and swimsuits

For a more satisfying result, breast augmentation may be combined with other procedures, such as a breast lift or tummy tuck.

Who Is a Good Candidate for Breast Augmentation?

One of the most important steps in your aesthetic journey is determining which procedures are best-suited to help you reach your goals. In general, the best candidates for any cosmetic surgery are in good health both physically and mentally, do not smoke, and have realistic expectations for the procedure and its possible outcome. 

For breast augmentation specifically, we do not recommend having surgery until your breasts have completely finished growing. Depending on the type of breast implant you choose, you will need to be 18 or 22 to have this procedure. There is no upper age limit. Your surgeon may also advise you to consider your lifestyle and plans to have children or breastfeed.

Breast augmentation does not lift the breasts. Women who are concerned about sagging tissue and downward-pointing or drooping nipples may want to consider a breast lift together with a breast augmentation instead of augmentation alone.

Is Breast Augmentation Safe?

Surgeons have been performing breast augmentations for decades, and breast implants are among the most studied medical devices in history. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved both saline- and silicone-filled implants for the purposes of enhancing or reconstructing breasts.

While no surgical procedure is without risk, the team at Crantford | Costa Plastic Surgery is committed to providing the highest standard of care to minimize the risk of complications like capsular contracture or implant rupture. If you have any questions about the longevity of breast implants, the likelihood or treatment of complications, breast implant illness or other safety concerns, our experienced plastic surgeons are happy to consult with you.

What Happens During a Consultation?

Because there are so many options available in breast augmentation, the consultation is a critical part of the process. Your surgeon will walk you through the decision-making process and help you make choices that align with your anatomy and goals. This time will also be used to conduct a thorough medical history and address all of your concerns and questions.

You will have another preoperative appointment closer to the date of your surgery. At this time, you will sign the consent forms, have photos and measurements taken, and receive detailed instructions for before and after surgery. Please adhere to these instructions closely as they are instrumental in ensuring your safety and comfort.

What Are My Breast Augmentation Options?

Breast implants are manufactured in a variety of types, sizes and shapes, and they are placed using a range of techniques. Each option has unique qualities. Your surgeon will act as your guide through this part of the process and make selecting the right implants an easier, more comfortable experience.

Type of Implant
The most frequently used implants are filled with silicone gel or saline (saltwater). Saline implants are inserted into the body without fluid, and then filled during surgery through a fill tube. When the tube is removed, the implant automatically seals itself. Gel implants are prefilled in specific volumes at a factory. 

Shape of Implant
Patients who desire more fullness in the top portion (upper pole) of their breasts often prefer the look achieved with round silicone or saline implants. Patients who desire a natural appearance with more volume in the area below the nipple and less fullness in the upper pole may prefer teardrop-shaped silicone implants.

Size of Implant
Breast implants are not measured in bra cup sizes, but in volume. Implant sizers can help you determine the volume you feel comfortable with. Your surgeon can also advise you on implant size based on the measurements taken at your initial consultation and your desired results. If your breasts are asymmetrical, different sizes can be used to achieve balance.

Profile of Implant
The “profile” of breast implants determines how far they project from the chest wall. They may be low profile, moderate profile, moderate plus profile, high profile, and extra high or ultra-high profile. The best choice for you will depend on the width of your chest, the amount of breast tissue you have and your aesthetic goals.

Implant Placement
Breast implants are placed into pockets created in each breast, underneath either breast tissue (subglandular position) or the chest wall muscle (submuscular or subpectoral position). There are also different ways of placing implants using the submuscular technique — either partially under the muscle (dual plane approach) or fully under the muscle.

Incision Technique
There are several incisional approaches for placing breast implants. Most augmentation procedures involve one of the following techniques: periareolar incision (around the nipple), inframammary incision (underneath the breast in the fold) or transaxillary incision (via the underarm). There are advantages and disadvantages to each location.

What Is Involved in Breast Augmentation Surgery?

A Charleston breast augmentation procedure lasts one to two hours and is typically performed with general anesthesia. 

First, the incision is made using the technique agreed upon during your consultation. Once the incision is prepared, a pocket is created and the implant is placed into the pocket. Depending on the style of implant you choose, your implant may come prefilled or it may be filled once it is in the pocket. The incisions are closed with sutures and skin adhesives when the implants are in place.

Our surgeons always perform breast augmentation surgery using the latest surgical techniques to maximize patient safety and achieve a natural-appearing result. As this is an outpatient procedure, most patients can return home the same day under the supervision of a trusted caregiver.

What Is the Recovery Timeline for Breast Augmentation?

The recovery period after breast augmentation ranges from a few days to one week, with most patients feeling noticeably better around four to five days post-surgery. Some bruising, swelling and general discomfort are to be expected initially. It’s important to prioritize rest and refrain from vigorous activity in the beginning to ensure you heal properly. This means avoiding actions like lifting or twisting, as well as many household chores.

Most breast augmentation patients can return to their daily routine after one to two weeks. Strenuous exercise should be avoided for four to six weeks. Your surgeon will follow you closely throughout the healing process and provide you with more specific guidelines regarding when you can resume full activities.

By three months, most of the healing is complete. Some internal healing and aesthetic changes will continue. Scars continue to fade for up to two years after surgery.

What Results Can Breast Augmentation Achieve?

Breast augmentation isn’t just an effective way to add or restore breast volume. It can be an incredibly empowering procedure that supports a healthy sense of self-esteem and helps you feel more confident in your skin.

Noticeable results are seen immediately, but it takes several months for swelling to resolve and the long-term results to be evident. During this time, your breasts may look larger than you envisioned and the implants may be overly high and firm. Rest assured, this is normal. The implants will gradually settle and soften, taking on a more natural look and feel that flatters your figure.

Breast implants do not come with a predetermined expiration date. If you are happy with how they look and you are not experiencing complications, there is no need to remove or revise them. It’s important to note, however, that no implant is designed to last forever, and yours may require replacement at some point during your lifetime.

Can My Breast Implants Be Exchanged or Removed?

Breast implant revision surgery is performed to address changing preferences or unsatisfactory results from a prior breast augmentation. Implant revision surgery can be undertaken due to the development of complications, such as capsular contracture, rippling, implant displacement, rupture or muscle flexion distortion. It can also be performed for aesthetic reasons, such as desiring a different size, improving the natural look and feel, changing lifestyle or aesthetic preferences, or the desire to change to a different style of implant.

For patients who want to be rid of their implants altogether, breast implant removal is an option. The implants and the capsules of scar tissue surrounding them can be extracted using various techniques. A breast lift may be performed together with explantation if the lost volume from the implants creates an “empty” or “deflated” look with sagging skin.

Request a Consultation and Create the Curves You Deserve

Our team is excited to meet with you in the privacy and comfort of our well-appointed Charleston offices to discuss your next steps. With over 60 years of combined experience, our plastic surgeons bring expertise, artistry and a meticulous eye for detail to everything they do. Their unflagging commitment to patient care helps them create results that are beautiful and extremely natural. 

If you’re interested in achieving fuller, firmer and shapelier breasts, we encourage you to schedule a consultation with Crantford | Costa Plastic Surgery today. Call us at 843-722-5904 or get in touch online.

Schedule A Consultation

If you have questions, comments or would like to schedule a consultation, please fill out a form on our contact page. If needed, an office representative will contact you as soon as possible. We are looking forward to hearing from you.

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