August 5th, 2012
'What size should I be?'. That is the question nearly every woman I see asks very early on in their breast augmentation consultation. Most ask already knowing what size they WANT to be (it's usually a 'small C', in case you were wondering). Breast implants, both silicone and saline, are sold by volume, ranging from 150cc up to 650cc, with lots of choices in between. Unfortunately, we can't select a 'small C' implant off the shelf.
The question is - How do I translate a desired breast size into a breast implant volume?
Some surgeons have women try on various implants in the office until they find one they like. Others have women bring in pictures of what they would like to look like and use different implants at the time of surgery to see what 'looks right'. Personally, I view these methods of implant selection as guessing, and think they're a set up for trouble.
Science has been applied to breast implant selection, and its unfortunate that many surgeons have chosen to ignore it to the detriment of their patients. Traditionally, breast augmentation has had a re-operation rate of 15 - 24% within 3 years, mostly for thinning or rippling of the skin, implant visibility, displacement, or other breast deformities related to implant placement. These complications are thought to be related to both operative technique and improper implant selection - choosing an implant that is too large for a woman's body and causing the skin to severely stretch and thin out over time. To prevent these complications, I use a system that has been scientifically proven to lower re-operation rates to between 2 - 4%, and give my Knoxville Plastic Surgery patients attractive, natural, and long-lasting results.
During the consultation, I take a series of detailed measurements of both the breast and the chest. From those measurements, I am able to select a range of appropriate implant sizes that fit each woman's specific anatomy. Basically, the wider your chest and the looser the breast skin, the larger an implant we can choose and still get a durable, natural result. My goal, and I find the goal of most of my patients, is to have their breasts be proportional to the rest of their body.
This system allows me to do exactly that. Better yet, it allows patients a much quicker recovery, as the surgery is precise, almost totally bloodless, and there is essentially no human contact with the implant (no one ever touches it - it goes from the sterile package into the breast through a device known as a Keller funnel, which cuts infection and contracture rates down immensely).
The method I have chosen to use allows patients a much faster recovery than other methods. There is virtually no bruising, no need for drainage tubes, and minimal pain. Most women are able to go out to dinner on the night of their surgery (in fact, I recommend that they do). Yes, your choice of sizes is slightly limited, but I feel the benefits for you, the patient, far outweigh the limitation in choice.
I am happy to discuss this in more detail, but to keep this post to a manageable length, I'll stop here. Feel free to leave any comments/questions. As always, jump over to my Facebook page (Jason Hall, M.D.), 'Like' me, and let the conversation begin.