Breast augmentation is one of the most frequently performed cosmetic surgery procedures in the U.S. and one of our most popular here in our Seattle office. Most of our patients in the Seattle and Tri-Cities, WA areas are looking to achieve a certain “look” and balance with the rest of their body, and not necessarily a particular bra cup size. Most of our patients want – and what we always strive for in our practice and approach are – youthful but natural results so no one knows for sure if they have had surgery.
Breast augmentation can give women with small or unevenly sized breasts a fuller, firmer, better-proportioned look through the placement of saline or silicone implants in the breasts.
Our patients elect to undergo breast augmentation for many different medical and aesthetic reasons, including balancing breast size, compensating for reduced breast volume after pregnancy or surgery, and correcting a congenital breast defect. Under Dr. Salemy’s care, patients can enjoy natural-looking breast enhancements that can help them meet their aesthetic goals.
Women choose to undergo breast enhancement for a number of reasons, but it’s important to understand what can and cannot be accomplished with this surgery.
Breast augmentation can help you attain the following goals:
In addition, this surgery can help to boost your self-confidence and help you to look and feel younger. A majority of patients report feeling sexier, more confident and many years younger after their breast augmentations.
Despite the fact that breast implants can help to correct a number of problems women may have with their current body shape, there are some things that this procedure cannot achieve. Breast augmentation surgery cannot correct saggy or drooping breasts. If you’re hoping to only correct sagging breasts, you may benefit from a breast lift procedure instead. However, if you want to improve the perkiness, size, shape and contour, it’s possible to combine a Breast Lift with implants. What’s the difference between Breast Augmentation and Breast Lift?
It’s easy to confuse a breast lift with breast augmentation, but the two procedures are quite different. Each surgery has contrasting goals and outcomes, which is why it’s so important to understand the difference.
Breast lifts do not increase the size of your breasts. Instead, the goal of this surgery is to reposition droopy or sagging breasts into a perkier position. This can involve removing excess skin around the breasts, lifting and reshaping the tissue and then tightening the remaining skin around the breast so that you get a better, fuller shape.
After a breast lift, you can enjoy perky, natural-looking breasts with enhanced cleavage, but they will not be any larger than before.
Breast augmentation is intended to add volume and size to your natural breasts. When you opt for implants, the intended results are larger, firmer breasts with an improved shape.
When you meet with Dr. Salemy, being open and honest about your aesthetic goals can best help him determine the correct procedure or combination of procedures for you.
The best candidates for breast implants are women who are in good health and have realistic expectations for what surgery can achieve. If you’re looking for improved shape, increased volume or additional cleavage, you are likely a good candidate for breast augmentation.
For saline implants, patients must be at least 18 years old and in good physical and mental health. To receive silicone implants, you must be healthy and at least 22 years old.
Choosing a plastic surgeon can be very personal. It’s important to choose a surgeon who understands your goals, answers your questions, and makes you feel comfortable and valued. It’s also very important to choose someone who is board-certified so you can feel confident he or she has the proper training and expertise, and meets stringent requirements.
When you first meet with Seattle cosmetic breast surgeon and breast augmentation surgeon Dr. Salemy, you should be prepared to discuss your expectations and goals for surgery as well as details about your medical history. You should have a list of any allergies, medical conditions, current prescriptions and supplements.
During your consultation, Dr. Salemy will take photographs and detailed measurements of your breasts, discuss possible treatment options and recommend the best course of action for you.
We know that every woman is unique in both her desires and her body shape. With that in mind, when Dr. Salemy meets with you to discuss your desired goals he will take the time during the pre-operative consultations in our Seattle office to learn what you hope to gain from breast augmentation surgery. He will then recommend the most effective technique to achieve the breast enhancement that you desire. This will include selecting the appropriate implant type, implant size, and implant placement, as well as any other procedures which may help create a nice result. In this way, every one of his patients enjoys a completely customized treatment designed with their specific goals in mind.
Breast implants are silicone shells filled with either saline (salt water) or silicone gel. Many patients opt for silicone implants as they are very durable and can offer a natural look and feel, but we also offer saline implants as well to patients who prefer it. Both implant types are very safe, and each offers its own advantages. Dr. Salemy will help you decide which is right for you. You will have the chance to see and feel different breast implants during your consultation. Dr. Salemy will also help you decide on the appropriate size breast implant to achieve your desired result.
After many years, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved silicone breast implants for breast augmentation surgery. We are proud to offer patients the option of silicone gel-filled breast implants, since they are softer and feel more natural than saline-filled breast implants. There are several outstanding silicone implant options for woman, including round implants, anatomic or “tear drop” implants, implants with a softer gel and implants with a firmer “gummy bear” feel. All of these implant types will be available at your consultation so that together with Dr. Salemy you can choose the option that can give you the look and feel you want.
The breast augmentation procedure typically lasts 60 to 90 minutes and is typically performed with either general anesthesia or local anesthesia and sedation. Incisions are made in inconspicuous places on the breast to minimize scar visibility. Your surgeon will help determine the best incision for breast augmentation based on a variety of additional factors. Breast augmentation incision options include:
The breast is then lifted, creating a pocket into which the implant is inserted.
Breast Implant placement beneath the muscle of the chest offers a few advantages over placement beneath the breast tissue only. These include camouflaging of the implant and less interference with mammogram examinations. Possible disadvantages include elevated pain in the first few days following surgery, more swelling and more time until the implant settles into its final position.
Implant placement beneath the breast tissue (in front of the muscle of the chest) has advantages and disadvantages as well. Advantages include less post-op pain and a more natural look. Disadvantages include a higher risk of seeing the ripping of the implant wall, particularly in very thin women with saline implants. We will discuss which option may be best for you.
After the implants have been inserted and positioned properly, the incisions are stitched closed, and a surgical bra is placed.
Most patients feel tired and sore during the recovery after breast augmentation surgery, but this usually passes in a day or two. Many patients return to work within the week.
Any post-operative pain, swelling and sensitivity will diminish over the first few weeks. All of the stitches are dissolvable and Dr. Salemy will see you in a week to check your progress.
Scars from breast augmentation incisions will begin to fade in a few months and will continue to fade for months or years.
Complications following breast augmentation surgery are uncommon and usually minimal. They may include bleeding, capsular contracture, swelling and pain, infection around the implant, a change in nipple sensation, milk production if you nursed a baby within a year before the procedure, and breakage or leakage of the implant (implant rupture) as a result of injury or the normal compression and movement of your breast.
If a saline implant ruptures, the implant will simply deflate in a few hours and your body will absorb the salt water. If a silicone implant breaks, you will need to see a doctor for replacement of the implant. Regular monitoring of breast implants after breast augmentation is recommended to ensure continuing breast and implant health.
Breast augmentation can achieve dramatic and beautiful results on its own as well as in conjunction with other cosmetic surgery or non-invasive procedures. Dr. Salemy sometimes recommends combining breast augmentation with other procedures such as a breast lift for more satisfying results. In fact, it’s become more common to combine a breast lift with augmentation. In addition to achieving the aesthetic goals you want, combining the two can be practical from a logistical perspective.
There are additional reasons to consider a breast augmentation with lift. Sometimes opting for a smaller implant size can help you achieve the same or better results than just receiving larger implants. Second, lifting and shaping your natural breast tissue before receiving implants can help improve the overall positioning and perkiness of your breasts.
Insurance does not typically cover breast augmentations but your insurance company can tell you more definitively.
How long your results last depends on a variety of factors. Some women can keep the same implants for many years, but in general, abpout 20-25% of patients will have some other surgery on their breasts within the first 10 years after their augmentation.
Board-certified surgeons are extensively trained and meet the stringent criteria and very high standards of a certifying body. In plastic surgery the American Board of Plastic Surgery is the only plastic surgery board recognized by The American Board of Medical Specialties. When you choose someone with these credentials, you can feel much more confident about the safety and legitimacy of the practice.
The type of implant that is best for depends on many factors, including your aesthetic goals, your anatomy, the results you want to see, and preference. Dr. Salemy will help you choose which material is best for the results you want.
Yes, silicone implants are safe, and are FDA-approved for anyone who is at least 22 years old.
Recovery can vary from one person to the next, but it generally takes a couple of weeks for most women to start feeling like themselves again. Some women can return to work a few days after their surgery, but any exercise or heavy lifting will have to wait a minimum of two to four weeks.
Scarring is a natural result of surgery but your surgeon can apply techniques to help minimize their prominence and visibility, including making the smallest possible incisions and placing them in low-visibility areas.
Patients are under general or local anesthesia for the entire procedure, so patients don’t feel any pain or discomfort at all during the surgery, but postop discomfort is variable and typically lasts a few days.