Breast augmentation, or augmentation mammoplasty (otherwise commonly known as a “boob job”), is a procedure that surgically enhances breast size and contour via breast implants or fat transfer. Implants typically made of either saline or silicone are placed behind each breast, enabling a one (or more) cup size increase. Breast augmentation is often performed to increase the volume of breasts that have reduced in size owing to weight loss or pregnancy, as well as to correct shape or symmetry irregularities.
This procedure aims to enhance breast volume and definition in order to improve the chest profile of women who are not satisfied with the overall size and appearance of the breasts. Since breast augmentation is categorized under plastic surgery, it is considered a reconstructive as well as a cosmetic procedure.
It is performed to:
$3,000 to $7,300
Breast augmentation is typically performed after the administration of general anesthesia, so the patient remains asleep throughout. Other times, only local anesthesia is used, in which case the patient stays awake during treatment. How the procedure is carried out tends to differ on a case-by-case basis, taking about one to two hours for completion; however, the main steps are as follows:
1. The surgeon makes an incision in one of three areas:
o The crease beneath the breast (known as the inframammary fold)
o Around the nipple/areola
o In the armpit area
Respectively, these incision types are known as the inframammary incision, the periareolar incision, and the transaxillary incision. Which option is best for your particular situation will be determined via a thorough discussion with your surgeon, and it typically depends on a couple of factors such as the extent to which breast enlargement is required and the type of implant used, the patient’s body type, and preferences among both the surgeon and the patient.
2. The skin and breast tissue are lifted and an appropriately-sized pocket is created.
3. The implant is inserted through the pocket via one of two placement types:
o Submuscular: The implant is placed beneath the pectoral muscle. This requires a longer time for recovery and intense pain may be experienced post-treatment.
o Subglandular (or submammary): The implant is placed on top of the pectoral muscle, just behind the breast tissue.
4. The incisions in the breast tissue are stitched close with layered sutures and are given further support and protection with bandages, skin adhesives, or surgical tape. The incision lines will be quite noticeable initially, but will gradually fade over time.
Your surgeon will help determine the best implant size prior to surgery by allowing you to examine how different implants feel after inserting them into a bra. You will be given all the instructions you need before undergoing treatment, such as whether you should discontinue smoking or taking certain medications, what items you must bring to the hospital for your appointment, and how long before surgery you should stop eating/drinking.
These instructions, as well as those provided after surgery, must be meticulously followed in order to ensure a speedy recovery and that you remain in good health both before and after treatment is completed.
The following offers some insight as to the type of instructions you might receive from your surgeon:
After the procedure is complete, you will be given pain-relieving medications while the anesthetic wears off. You must have a friend or family member take you home as you won’t be able to drive while still under the effects of anesthesia. The sutures that were used to stitch the incisions closed will gradually disappear in about six weeks as they dissolve over time. If the sutures are not dissolvable, or you’ve had drainage tubes inserted, you will need to schedule a follow-up visit with your surgeon in order to remove them.
You will be given thorough instructions on:
As with all surgical procedures, it is important that you discuss and address any specific questions or concerns that you may have about your recovery period with your surgeon.
Post-operative instructions/guidelines that may be given include the following:
It is not very common to experience any major complications as a result of the procedure; however, it is essential that you seek medical help as soon as possible if you experience or notice:
In order to obtain good breast contour and minimize any risk of capsular contractures, it is recommended to perform a proper breast massage after surgery. How this should be done will be informed by your surgeon during your follow-up appointment. It is important to note that you may still experience capsular contractures even if the massage is done properly as it also depends on how well your body heals post-treatment.
While gently massaging with both hands, push both of the breasts closer together then push them away from each other. Next, push them downwards, then upwards. These steps should be repeated as directed by your surgeon.
We understand you may want to change your plans due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) and its health implications.
All surgical procedures carry some form of risk; however, you must fully understand all the risks and side effects that may accompany breast augmentation before proceeding with the treatment. During an in-depth consultation, your surgeon will have a thorough discussion with you regarding these risks, and you mustn’t hesitate to ask any questions that you may have about the procedure.
Possible risks include:
In situations where capsular contracture, implant deflation, bleeding, or infection is experienced, this may require the complete removal or replacement of the implant in order to treat these issues.
Who are the best candidates for breast augmentation surgery?
The most suitable candidates for this procedure are women who:
What are the main advantages and disadvantages of silicone implants over saline implants?
While silicone implants offer a much more natural appearance and feel, silicone leakage can be quite detrimental to the adjacent tissues in comparison to their saline counterparts.
Will I be asleep during surgery?
General anesthesia will be administered prior to surgery, so you will be asleep throughout.
How long will I stay in the hospital?
You will typically be expected to stay in the hospital for one to two nights before getting discharged. While you can go shopping and sightseeing before your follow-up appointment, you should avoid swimming, heavy lifting, and other high-intensity activities.
How many days after the operation can I leave Bangkok?
You can travel or resume work after your check-up visit, which is usually scheduled 7 to 10 days post-surgery.
How long is the recovery period?
Many patients are usually able to walk with slow, careful steps the day after surgery, with further progress expected over the next few days. You may experience some bruising or swelling, but these effects usually subside after about two weeks. For the first four weeks, you must limit physical activity and any contact with the breasts. The conclusion of the healing phase, as well as the full final results, can be expected within the next 6 to 12 months.
Is breast augmentation surgery suitable for me?
Before deciding to proceed with breast augmentation, it is imperative that you thoroughly weigh your expectations and potential risks via an in-depth discussion with your surgeon. Women who want to enhance rather than perfect their appearance are most suited for this procedure.
That being said, breast augmentation may be an excellent option for you if you meet at least one of the following criteria:
How do silicone breast implants compare to saline implants?
Saline implants have been around for a long time. They are composed of a silicone outer shell but the inner shell contents are empty when initially inserted into the breast pocket. This will be filled with sterile salt water (saline) after insertion, resulting in a smaller, less visible incision site. Saline implants are usually less costly in comparison to silicone implants; however, one major disadvantage is that they can often cause the overlapping skin to appear wrinkly, and you may be able to feel the water sloshing about. However, the implants can be overfilled with salt water in order to prevent any visible wrinkling or rippling.
Silicone implants, on the other hand, are completely composed of silicone which is a synthetic substance that has an identical feel to human fat. These implants have a casing that is filled with silicone gel and are available in many shapes and sizes to choose from with some being much firmer to the touch than others. While silicone implants have a more natural appearance and feel, silicone leakage/rupture can pose a greater risk to nearby tissues. It is therefore recommended to perform an MRI scan once in a while to check for any ruptures. You should discuss with your doctor how often these scans should be scheduled if you decide to settle for silicone implants.