Breast Augmentation

Introduction

As a woman, Dr. Rasmussen understands the personal nature of a woman’s decision to have breast surgery.

Whether a woman chooses breast surgery to reduce discomfort from large breasts… implants to better balance her body… breast lifting to restore a more youthful shape… or reconstruction to aid in rehabilitation after breast cancer surgery, Dr. Rasmussen uses her more than 20 years experience to incorporate both the art and science of breast surgery.

By paying close attention to the individual needs and promoting realistic expectations, Dr. Rasmussen can ensure natural, personalized results.

While breast size may not be important to some women, others may feel that small breasts not only limit their fashion choices, but can negatively affect their body image. The goal of breast augmentation is to increase fullness and projection of the breasts to improve the balance in a woman’s figure. Often, the surgery can enhance her self-image and self-confidence.

Breast Augmentation Overview

Breast Augmentation, also known as Augmentation Mammoplasty, is surgical enhancement of a woman’s breasts to accentuate their size and shape. This procedure helps women who desire a fuller profile, who have lost breast volume due to pregnancy or nursing, or who have undergone breast reconstruction and want to attain symmetry of the opposite breast. It also helps young women who may have a developmental deformity resulting in one breast smaller than the other.

Breast augmentation is a highly individualized procedure – one that a woman should choose to undergo only to fulfill her own personal desire for enhanced breast size, not the desire of others. In addition, the general appearance of a woman’s breast postoperatively will be comparable to her preoperative shape, merely an enlargement of that shape. This is an important concept, particularly in cases in which women have sagging breasts, or low positioned nipple areola complexes. A breast lift may be necessary to perform in conjunction with breast augmentation to give the best results.

Reasons for Considering a Breast Augmentation:

  • Create more normal proportions.
  • Enhance body shape if breast are too small.
  • Increase breast volume after pregnancy and nursing.
  • Equalize a difference in breast size to gain breast symmetry for developmental deformities or post mastectomy reconstruction.

Technique: Breast augmentation includes making an incision, creating a pocket, and then selecting an implant. Common incision locations include the breast crease (inframammary fold), the armpit (transaxillary), or around the areola (periareolar). A pocket is then created to accommodate the implants. This may be either directly behind the breast tissue (submammary), or beneath the chest wall muscle (subpectoral). An implant is then selected for placement in the pocket and this may be either a pre-filled implant that is silicone gel-filled, or an implant that is filled during surgery (saline) creating the desired volume. The surface texture of the implants is also a factor in the decision-making process. All of the technical aspects noted above have pros and cons, which are discussed during the comprehensive consultation with Dr. Rasmussen.

Any surgery, including breast augmentation, has potential risks, and Dr. Rasmussen makes every attempt to limit risks. These include bleeding, infection, sensory changes, and poor scars. Breast implant surgery also has inherent risks, including implant rupture and capsule contracture (hardness of the breast implant). Historically, implants have also been subjected to scrutiny for rare and unsubstantiated risks, such as autoimmune disorders, collagen vascular disorders, atypical neurological disorders, and rheumatic syndromes. Dr. Rasmussen will also discuss these during her detailed consultation. Her two specialty societies also have a joint website on breast implant safety for your viewing. You can visit the site at www.Breastimplantsafety.org.

Breast augmentation is generally performed as an outpatient procedure under general anesthesia. Postoperative instructions include limited activities in order to speed up the healing process and recovery time. Patients usually have mild to moderate postoperative pain which diminishes significantly during the first week, and can be treated with oral medication. Most swelling subsides in 2 to 4 weeks, at which time the “new look” will be better appreciated. Implant “manipulation exercises” may be recommended to prevent capsule contracture from occurring during the course of healing. The anticipated outcome is typically very good, however, there are constraints based on each individual’s preoperative anatomy.