Breast augmentation is a common cosmetic surgery procedure in which breast implants are used to change the size, shape and fullness of the breasts. Breast augmentation surgery is performed;
- for the enlargement of naturally small breasts,
- to restore breast size and shape after pregnancy, breastfeeding or weight loss,
- It can be applied for purposes such as eliminating the asymmetry in the breasts.
What is a Breast Implant?
Breast implant is a medical prosthesis placed inside the breast to enlarge, reconstruct and create a better physical form. Breast implant has different types according to their contents, covers and shapes.
Breast implants can be categorized according to the contents of breast implants as containing silicone and saline. Silicone gel filled implants are in the form of an outer shell filled with silicone gel. Saline-containing breast implants are filled with saline solution. It is possible to fill saline-containing breast implants, in which the solution is held in an elastomer silicone shell, with different amounts of saline solution. The amount of saline solution in the implant affects the firmness and shape of the breast. If saline leaks from the implant, the saline solution is naturally absorbed by the body and excreted.
According to their covers, breast implants are categorised as flat and rough surface. Breast implants with a rough surface have small protrusions on the surface. This type of implant is designed to reduce the risk of capsular contracture, a complication that develops in some women after breast augmentation surgery. Flat-surface breast implants are the softest of the different types of implants. It usually makes breast movement look more natural than other implants.
According to their shape, breast implants can be classified as round and drop. Round breast implants, with their hemispherical appearance, provide a fuller appearance in the part of the chest called the décolleté area. While the upper part of the drop silicones is thinner, the lower part is wider. A fuller appearance can be obtained in the lower part of the chest with drop silicones. The use of drop silicones is generally preferred in patients with mild sagging of the breast and who do not need a breast lift procedure.
Although there are many different types of breast implants, which breast implant is preferred is determined individually according to the patient’s characteristics and expectations from the surgery.
Which Techniques Are Used in Breast Augmentation Surgery?
Breast augmentation surgery can be performed under general anaesthesia using different techniques. One of these techniques is applied through the fold under the breast. In this procedure, also known as the inframammary fold, an incision is made in the fold under the breast. It is a technique that allows the surgeon to control implant positioning more directly. It also has minimal effects on the milk-producing areas of the breast. It also allows to hide the surgical incision.
In the technique, also known as the peri-areolar incision (around the nipple), an incision is made along the edge of the areola. Because the incision is very close to the milk-producing areas of the breast, women who have had breast augmentation with the peri-areolar technique may have more problems with breastfeeding and nipple sensation after surgery. This technique is generally preferred in women with very small breasts who do not have under-breast folds.
In the method, also called the trans-axillary (armpit) approach, an incision is made under the armpit. This method is usually used to place an implant under or over the muscle. It is an advantageous method as there is no scar on the breast itself. However, it may be more difficult to place a symmetrical implant in procedures that use axillary incisions.
Breast implants can be placed under the breast tissue, under the muscle, under the fascia and partly under the muscle partly under the breast tissue (dual plane). The technique to be applied in breast augmentation surgery and where the breast implant will be placed is determined according to the characteristics of the breast tissue, the patient’s needs, expectations from the surgery, the thickness of the breast tissue, the elasticity and quality of the skin.
What Should Be Considered After Breast Augmentation Surgery?
After breast augmentation surgery, the patient is usually kept under observation overnight. After discharge, medications prescribed by the doctor should be used regularly. It is considered normal to feel pain, stiffness and sensitiveness in the application area in the first week following the surgery.
Patients can usually return to work 3-5 days after the operation. After breast augmentation surgery, the breasts may appear larger and asymmetrical than planned until the edema is completely gone. It may take about 6-12 months for the edema to completely disappear and the breast to reach the planned size. Difficulty in raising the arms may be felt in the early postoperative period. In this process, the patient should avoid movements such as pushing, pulling and lifting heavy objects.
Extreme physical activity, heavy housework and sports should be avoided for the first 4-6 weeks after the operation. During this period, the sports bra recommended by the doctor should be used. One should not enter the sea and the pool, and should not be in extremely hot environments such as saunas and Turkish baths.