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17 Must Knows for a Boob Job
Breast Enhancement

17 Must Knows for a Boob Job

Written by
Juli Albright
Juli is our patient advocate and community connection. She balances work, life and family with grace.
Juli is our patient advocate and community connection. She balances work, life and family with grace.

17 Must Knows for a Boob Job

Breast augmentation is one of Alamo Plastic Surgery’s most popular cosmetic procedures.  If is life changing for some women to fix breast abnormalities, restore a youthful volume, or feel more womanly.  We wanted to create a quick punch list of must knows for women considering this procedure.

1. Your plastic surgeon should be a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon with 5 star ratings and excellent before and after Photos.

Don't fall for pressure sales tactics - choose the right plastic surgeon!

This is one of the important things women need to consider. Only experienced and competent surgeons can guide you about breast enhancement procedures, associated risks, and aftercare. Make sure you choose a surgeon who is board certified from the American Board of Plastic Surgery.  

The certificate ensures that the plastic surgeon excels at using advanced aesthetic techniques and has received extensive training. However, during the consultation, you can ask about surgical procedures, the success rate, and the complication involved in the process. Check out their portfolio of previous cases and before and after photos.  

Check Google, RealSelf, and Healthgrades reviews on the plastic surgeon. On RealSelf you can look for Verified doctors which indicates they have good reviews and are skilled in plastic surgery. You really want someone with a 5 Star rating. Multiple poor reviews indicate the surgeon is not good.

For further information on how to choose a plastic surgeon - check out this article.

2. How much is a boob job?

Our patients love our boob job cost. The national average is $7,500! What implant you choose with your plastic surgeon will impact the cost. The least expensive are saline implants and the most expensive gummy or silicone implants.

3. How your surgeon deals with complications?

This is one way to determine the competence of your plastic surgeon. Ask him / her how often he performs breast revision surgery after a primary breast augmentation. If they do not have an answer readily available or they are not being honest those are both major red flags.

4. Types of breast implants?

Breast implants have many types that give women different shapes, looks, and feel. The most common types are saline, silicone, gummy bear, and structured implants. For shapes women typically chose teardrop or round. Women wanting a natural look often opt for the teardrop. For less natural shape, round implants are chosen.

Discussing your desired type of implant with your doctor is an important step before the surgery.

5. Safety of Implants

Implants have been a part of many controversies, so finding out what implants your surgeon will use, why has he chosen them is vital to ensure safety.

6. Find out about over and above the muscle implants?

Most common breast implant pocket is the submuscular implant pocket!

Implant pocket is the most important determinant of outcome and is described by the relationship of the implant to the pectoralis muscle on the chest.  The “pec” muscle is a flat fan-shaped chest muscle connected to the front of the chest on three sides (collar bone, outside border of the breast bone, and along the ribs near the lower part of the breast).  The muscle is not connected to the chest wall on the side toward your armpit (you can pinch the muscle between your fingers on the side) as it spans over the armpit to connect the chest to your upper arm.  Placing the implant above this muscle is called subglandular or prepectoral.  Placing the implant below the muscle is called submuscular or subpectoral, and can be further differentiated by being completely under the muscle (total submuscular), or partly under the muscle (dual-plane). When an implant is placed below the muscle, the procedure is more painful and you may need more pain medication. However, for most women, the pain is temporary and there is no difference in pain long term. By changing the pocket, you can change the overall breast look as well as the relative short and long term risks and benefits of the procedure.  During your consultation, your plastic surgeon should help you decide which implant pocket is best for you. Below is a quick infographic to get your started.

Infographic designed by: Alamo Plastic Surgery

7. Size and shape of implants?

Although most women worry about specific implant volume, implant pocket and implant dimensions are more important considerations-- especially if you have a particular “look” you are trying to achieve.  To this end, a simple exercise for patients considering breast augmentation is to begin collecting photos of models you like, in clothes/swimsuits/underwear/naked.  You can also view Dr Albright’s B&A gallery online or in the office to get additional examples. Together you and Dr. Albright will figure out what will help you achieve your best look.

8. Are you a good candidate for a boob job?

Your weight, health, medical history, and lifestyle determine whether or not you are a suitable candidate for the surgery, so make sure you discuss everything with your plastic surgeon.

9. Recovery time

Dr. Albright wants all of his patients to get the best result possible.  What we do after breast augmentation surgery is just as important as the surgery itself.  Although there are slight variations in breast augmentation techniques, patients will have 2 weeks with minimal reaching/pulling with the arms, and less than 10 pounds lifting of weight.  This is followed by 2 more weeks of less than 30 pounds lifting, but during this time you may reach and pull with the arms.  In total, there will be 4 weeks of no intense exercise and you will be in a bra 24/7 except for showering.  After these 4 weeks, most patients may begin regular exercise as tolerated.

10. When will I see results from breast implants?

For most patients there will be initial swelling from surgery followed by gradual resolution of the swelling with a resulting loss of volume.  Do not worry if they appear squashed and misshapen. This is normal. Around 2 months, most of the swelling has resolved and you will be at your approximate breast size.  At this point you can go out and purchase your new wardrobe (bras, bikinis, etc)!  However, even at this point, you may not have your final breast SHAPE out-of-clothes (how the breast will look when standing naked).  This is because the overlying soft tissues are still adjusting to the implant which takes about 2-3 months for above-the-muscle implants to about 4-6 months for below-the-muscle implants. Depending on your goals, this may help you figure out when to schedule your consultation.

11. How can I maintain my results?

Understanding that the biology of aging can’t be reversed with a scalpel, there are some common sense precautions you can take to prolong the longevity of your result.  Breast tissue and breast implants have weight.  In fact, breast implants are typically heavier than native breast tissue for the same volume.   Gravity and activities will move this weight over time, and eventually overpower the soft tissue support creating droopiness and a poorly positioned implant.  For this reason, Dr. Albright recommends wearing breast support as much as possible, including at night, for life.  Related to this concept of soft tissue strain, one should avoid significant weight fluctuations either up or down. Finally, we can avoid unnecessary damage to the soft tissue by limiting nicotine exposure and tanning.

12. Do I need a breast lift with a boob job?

This is the first question to answer when considering a breast augmentation.  Dr. Albright will assess your breast tissue, the skin of the breast and the position of the nipple to help you decide which of breast augmentation, breast lift, or breast lift with breast augmentation would be best.  The ideal breast augmentation candidate is a patient that desires more breast volume. If you desire to wear a larger cup size, then more volume will be needed. If you are happy with the volume of breast tissue in a bra, but not with the droopiness of the breast out of clothing, then a breast lift is best.  Do you want more volume and need to fix a little breast droop?  Typically, if the nipple position is below the fold of the breast while standing in front of a mirror and you want larger breasts, a lift with an implant (augmentation mastopexy) procedure will likely be needed.

Check out Dr. Albright's 2 minute video explaining the difference.

13. Complications with breast augmentation procedures?

In general Board Certified Plastic Surgeons have very few complications which directly affect your health. They do have cosmetic complications. It is extremely important to pick the right plastic surgeon to have a great long term result. Do not be enticed by plastic surgery fees abroad.  The complication rate is much higher and often the surgeons have no training or incentive to care for the complications.

14. Breast augmentation post-surgery undergarments

Plastic Surgeons recommend post-operative bras after breast augmentation and reduction surgeries. They should check your post-operative bra to ensure the correct fit and support for you after surgery. Typically you will wear this special post-op recovery bra for four weeks. Alamo Plastic Surgery recommends a couple of bras on Amazon for immediately after surgery:

15. Breastfeeding with implants

There are very rare cases in which breast implants create a problem for breastfeeding mothers. Otherwise, they are long-lasting and suitable for breastfeeding.

16. Is it painful?

Augmentation involves the movement of your chest muscles.  The initial surgery will be conducted under general anesthesia and will be painless. During the recovery, there will be bruising, pain, and swelling with can be handled with regularly scheduled pain medications.

17. How long does the surgery take?

For straightforward breast augmentation, it takes around an hour to two hours for surgery.

Written by
Juli Albright

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