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What Is Breast Augmentation?

As a term, breast augmentation can refer to variations of breast enlargement surgery and procedures, but it's most commonly associated with breast implants. According to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS), breast augmentation became the most popular cosmetic surgery procedure performed in the U.S. in 2008—an incredible 355,671 breast augmentation surgeries were reported for that year.

Breast implants are made of silicone gel or saline liquid inserts. These inserts, shaped to resemble breast tissue, are literally “implanted” within the breast structure to give them a larger, fuller, perkier shape and appearance. Keep reading for more breast augmentation information!

Why Do Women Undergo Breast Augmentation?

Also known as augmentation mammaplasty, breast augmentation is a popular plastic surgery procedure for many reasons. Breast implants are most commonly sought by women as a means of:

  • Enhancing their feminine physique
  • Combating the physical signs of aging
  • Correcting disproportionate or malformed breast tissue
  • Restoring shape and form after a pregnancy or dramatic weight loss

Other reasons for breast augmentation can be more personal and specific. Some women choose breast augmentation strictly to build sexual self-confidence. For others, breast augmentation is chosen to replace tissue that was removed in breast cancer surgery. Another group of patients choose breast implant surgery because they feel it will give them a needed career edge—this is especially true of women in the modeling or entertainment industry.

No matter what a patient's reasons for pursuing breast augmentation, they should meet with a licensed plastic surgeon for a consultation before making any final breast surgery decisions.

Important Breast Augmentation Variables

The actual decision to undergo breast augmentation might, in fact, be the simplest one a patient has to make in the process as a whole. There are a great many breast augmentation considerations and variables to be determined before the surgery itself can take place.

Type of Breast Implants

The type of breast implant a patient chooses can largely impact the look, shape, feel, longevity and overall success of their augmentation surgery. That's why it's recommended to discuss the different implant options in depth with your plastic surgeon before selecting the best one for you.

Breast Augmentation Costs

The cost of breast augmentation will weigh heavily on most patient's surgical choices. That's why it's helpful to outline a budget for your breast augmentation surgery ahead of time, then research local breast surgery costs, individual surgeon fees, and other included costs (anesthesia fees, facility fees, etc.) beforehand to help make your breast augmentation as affordable as possible. There are also variations in the cost of different types of breast implant, so be sure to compare those when choosing your implants as well.

Implant Size, Shape and Texture

The size, shape and texture of breast implants gives patients more personalized control over the look and feel of their implants than they ever had before. By meeting with a plastic surgeon and discussing these options during a breast augmentation consultation, patients will be able to weigh the pros and cons of each. The size of the implant is determined by the cc amount that is used to fill up the implant shell. The most popular breast implant shapes are round and teardrop. Patients also have the option of the implant itself being smooth or textured.

Certain breast implant sizes, shapes and textures will be more appropriate for some patients over others. That's why it's best to discuss these variables with your surgeon and choose the best options for you together during the consultation.

Breast Surgery Techniques and Preferences

In addition to the breast implant type, size and shape, patients should also be aware of the different possibilities when it comes to actual surgical techniques. Modern breast surgeons are now able to insert breast implants through various different incision points, to better correlate with a patient's needs and to minimize visible scarring. Breast augmentation patients can also choose between having their breast implant placed above (subglandular) or below (submuscular) the pectoral muscle wall.

With your plastic surgeon, discuss what these techniques could mean for your individual breast augmentation surgery and results.

Breast Augmentation Risks and Side Effects

Obviously there are risks involved with any surgical procedure. However, there are specific breast augmentation side effects that prospective patients should be informed of prior to surgery. By researching the potential side effects of breast enlargement surgery, and discussing your individual risk factors with your surgeon, you can greatly reduce your odds of enduring breast augmentation side effects.

Breast Surgeons

The choice of plastic surgeon is arguably the most important of the above-mentioned variables in determining your breast augmentation success. A breast enlargement patient should verify that their surgeon is:

  • Highly experienced in performing breast implant surgery
  • Knowledgeable of modern breast surgery techniques and implant types
  • Licensed and board certified
  • Familiar with the specific breast procedure being sought
  • Sensitive to their patient's enhancement goals and needs

Can Breast Augmentation be Combined with Anything?

While some patients may only want or require a standard breast augmentation surgery, other patients may wish to combine breast implant surgery with another enhancement procedure. Other surgical breast enhancement options include:

While breast augmentation could feasibly be combined with any of these procedures, it is most commonly performed in conjunction with breast lifts and breast reconstruction. Breast reduction, breast liposculpture and Gynecomastia surgery are all intended to reduce breast mass and volume, so combined implants would not help to achieve that goal.

Breast implant revision surgery is typically performed on patients who've experienced complications with a previous set of implants, and thus need them replaced. On other occasions, a patient may decide that they'd prefer a different implant size or shape compared to what they originally received. In both cases, the former implants are first removed and than the new breast implants are inserted.

Getting Started with Breast Augmentation Surgery

While the information listed above and in other sections of Breast Augmentation Resources will be incredibly important for your breast enhancement journey, the best place to get started is a visit to the plastic surgeon. By meeting with a board-certified plastic surgeon for a breast augmentation consultation, you can immediately find out:

    If you're a candidate for breast implants
  • Which type of breast implants is right for you
  • How much breast augmentation will cost
  • Which financing plans are available for your surgery
  • What your estimated risk of implant side effects is

To schedule your first breast augmentation consultation with a professional, board-certified breast surgeon in your area, contact Breast Augmentation Resources' representatives! They can be reached online or over the phone, and are standing by to answer more of your questions, connect you with a local breast implant expert, and make your breast augmentation experience both convenient and rewarding!



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