Breast Implants: All You Need to Know Before Your Procedure

Breast Implants: All You Need to Know Before Your Procedure

The Aesthetics Society reported that the number of breast augmentations done in the United States has increased by 89 percent since 2020. Despite the shift of trends over time, the demand for fullness through implants is surging unimaginably.

In this article, we will shed light on experts’ opinions on this procedure. First, we will discuss what happens before a breast augmentation procedure.

Consultation Process

During a breast augmentation consultation, it is crucial for the surgeon to approach the interaction with the patient carefully, as this stage involves unraveling important information. The surgeon will ask you about your needs, desires for the surgery, your preferred size, and expectations for the procedure.

Next, a comprehensive breast examination should be conducted, accompanied by the capture of precise pictures, 3-D images, and measurements. To facilitate the decision-making process, the surgeon should present the patient with a list of available options and provide opportunities for them to physically experience different implants. It is important for the patient to touch and feel the implants to get a better sense of their characteristics.

Furthermore, the consultation process should involve educating the patient about the advantages and risks associated with each type of implant. The surgeon should ensure that the patient is well-informed and aware of the potential benefits and drawbacks of each option. To aid in the decision-making process, the patient can also be given the opportunity to try on different implant sizes using a sizing bra.

“Overall, the objective of the consultation is to establish a mutual understanding and agreement between the patient and the surgeon regarding the desired outcome and the most suitable approach to achieve it,” says Dr. Johnny Franco of Austin Plastic Surgeon.


Many outstanding surgeons have substantial wait times. Hence, it is advisable to plan your procedure timeline backward from your goal period to enable you to achieve it.

Some facilities usually plan a tentative period date during the first meeting—virtual or physical, even before the consultation. This tentative appointment is to make the process seamless for the patient. Depending on your goals and the doctor’s schedule, the procedure may happen a few weeks or months after consultation.


Patients need to enhance their health before breast augmentation to properly position them for the best possible result and suppress procedural threats. You should maintain a balanced diet and live healthily. Also, you should watch your weight and avoid nicotine.

Avoid ibuprofen at least the night before the procedure because it can thin the blood. You should also increase your intake of Vitamin C to boost your immunity.

Implants 101: The Details

Saline versus Silicone

After placing them in the breast, saline implants are filled with sterile salt water, while surgeons pre-fill silicone implants with a silicone gel similar in texture to actual breast tissue. According to experts, many patients prefer silicone because the gel gives a more natural feel and appearance.

However, a silicone implant can go unnoticed if it ruptures because it tends to remain inside the capsule, and the changes in the breast appearance are insignificant. You will quickly notice leaking in a saline implant because it deflates.

Shape and Profile

Implants can either be teardrop-shaped or round (the more conventional and typical type). Doctors prefer the latter, and it comes in diverse profiles. For example, a ‘high-profile’ displays more outwardly, while a low-profile implant shows less and is somewhat broader, ideal for those craving increased cleavages. There are many other options in between.


Breast implant sizes are measured in cubic centimeters (ccs), an appropriate way to describe the volume of space an implant fills. Many women approaching their 50s now prefer ‘downsizing.’ After having numerous large implants in their prime, they decide to go smaller, not to feel top-heavy.

About two to three decades ago, the average implant size was 375 to 400 ccs, but many patients now prefer 250 to 275 ccs.

Incisions and Scarring

Doctors can insert implants through three distinct entry points or incisions. However, safety data reveals that the inframammary fold—the crease beneath the breast—is the most typical approach. It can vary based on a patient’s unique needs.

Usually, the inframammary fold incision allows the breast to cover the scar. The trans-axillary method entails placing the implants via the armpit to prevent breast scars. However, it causes a tiny scar in the armpit.

The entry point notwithstanding, scars heal fully within six months to one year.


Depending on the patient’s active lifestyle and the amount of breast tissue, physicians can place implants in three different pockets—above the muscle, underneath the muscle, or subfascial. Many surgeons prefer the subfascial option (which involves putting the implant between the muscle and the covering ‘fascia’ of the pectoralis muscle) because of its excellent outcome. It prevents breast movement, causing implant malposition after the contraction of the pectoralis muscle.

Breast Implant Registry

The Plastic Surgery Foundation liaised with the FDA to form the National Breast Implant Registry (NBIR) in 2018. This quality initiative and safety surveillance registry collects clinical, procedural, and result statistics during operation and subsequent reoperations for every US patient who receives breast implants.

The registry has documented over 78,000 breast implant cases, with over 1,500 healthcare providers registering their intentions.

What Takes Place After Breast Surgery?

Your chest will feel tight for the first few days. You will also feel pressure until the pocket begins to stretch. Patients may also notice swelling. Physicians will prescribe medication to take care of discomfort. You can also use bromelain and arnica to minimize swelling.

During recovery, rest well and limit movements of the upper body. Sleeping on your back rather than the side is also advisable to avoid swelling and bleeding.

If you do a desk job, take a week off work and more time if you are into a more physically draining role. It’s also suggested by your provider to take off one month of exercise.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Fat Transfer

Apart from the typical implants, you can also increase your breast size through fat transfer. It entails taking fat from the patient’s stomach or thighs through liposuction to the breast region. You can also use donor fat.

An essential advantage of fat transfer is its use of your tissue, and after its survival, it stays in the injected area forever; instead of using a foreign body object.. However, the breast volume can change if you experience a substantial weight fluctuation.

Often, fat transfer is insufficient to achieve larger goals, particularly for thin individuals. In that case, you may consider a hybrid option—fat transfer and implant. It is also essential to add that not all the fat you transfer lasts long-term, and if you overfill the breasts with fat, they will likely not survive or last long.

Another disadvantage of this method is that if you want a substantial increase in size, you may have to undergo multiple fat procedures, and it does not resist gravity like an implant.

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