augmentation, technically known as augmentation mammoplasty, is a
surgical procedure to enhance the size and shape of a woman's breast for
a number of reasons: First to give a women larger breasts; second to fix
reduction in size after pregnancy; third to balance different size
breasts and lastly as reconstructive work after breast surgery.
By inserting an implant behind each breast, surgeons are able to increase a woman's bust line by one or more bra cup sizes. A breast implant is a silicone shell filled with either silicone gel or a saltwater solution known as saline.
Because of safety concerns regarding silicone gel-filled breast implants, the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) has determined that new gel-filled implants, at the present time, should be available only to women participating in approved studies.
Saline-filled implants are currently available to breast augmentation patients , pending further FDA review. You should ask your doctor more about the specifics of the FDA decisions. (This is as of 1992)
Breast surgery can be extremely expensive. Prices of the surgery usually can run from the low thousands to many many thousands of dollars. But when compared to an automobile or a house its not too bad!
There are many risks associated with Breast surgery which should be seriously considered and discussed with family members and doctors prior to making a decision. Breast augmentation has risks associated with surgery and specific complications associated with this procedure.
The most common problem occurs if the scar or capsule around the implant begins to tighten- this is called capsular contracture. This squeezing of the soft implant can cause the breast to feel hard. Capsular contracture sometimes requires either removal or "scoring" of the scar tissue, or perhaps removal or replacement of the implant.
Some women develop an infection around an implant. This may occur at any time, but is most often seen just after surgery. In some cases, the implant may need to be removed for several months until the infection clears. Excessive bleeding following the operation may cause some swelling and pain. If excessive bleeding continues, another operation may be needed to control the bleeding and remove the accumulated blood.
Some women report that their nipples become oversensitive, under sensitive. One may notice numbness near their incisions. These symptoms usually disappear within time, but may be permanent in some patients.
Occasionally, breast implants may leak or break. This can sometimes occur from the normal movement of your breast and implant, causing the shell to leak. If a saline-filled implant breaks, the implant will deflate in a few hours and the salt water will most likely be absorbed by the body.
If a break occurs in a gel-filled implant 2 things may occur. If the shell breaks but the scar capsule around the implant does not, you may not notice any change. If the scar also breaks or tears, silicone gel may move into surrounding tissue. The gel may collect in the breast and cause new scars to form or it may move to another area of the body. There might be a change in the shape or firmness of the breast. The above may may require a second operation. In some cases, it may not be possible to remove all of the silicone gel in the breast tissue if a rupture should occur.
A few women with breast implants have reported symptoms similar to diseases of the immune system, such as scleroderma and other arthritis-like conditions. These symptoms may include joint pain or swelling, fever, fatigue, or breast pain.
Breast implants may change the way mammography is done to detect cancer. When you request a routine mammogram, go to a radiology center where they have experience in the special techniques needed to get a solid x-ray of a breast with an implant. Ultrasound examinations may be useful in some women with implants to detect breast lumps or to evaluate the implant.
Pregnancy, nursing, and getting older can affect a woman's breasts. As the skin loses its elasticity, the breasts begin to say losing their shape and firmness. Breastlifts are a surgical procedure to raise and reshape sagging breasts. This is known as Mastopexy. It is important to note that the results of such surgery may not be long lasting. Mastopexy can also reduce the size of the areola.
The procedure can leave you with unevenly positioned nipples, or a permanent loss of feeling in your nipples or breasts. There may be complications or a reaction to the anesthesia. Bleeding and infection following a breast lift can cause scars to widen. Mastopexy does leave noticeable, permanent scars You can expect some loss of feeling in your nipples and breast skin, caused by the swelling after surgery. This numbness usually fades as the swelling subsides. In some women it may last a year or more, and occasionally it may be permanent.
The most common procedure involves a incision following the natural contour of the breast. The incision outlines the area from which breast skin will be removed and sets the new location for the nipple. When the excess skin has been removed, the nipple and areola are moved to the higher position. The skin surrounding the areola is then worked to reshape the breast. Stitches are usually located around the areola. If you're having an implant inserted along with your breast lift, it will be placed directly under the breast tissue, or deeper, under the muscle of the chest wall.
All surgery have significant risks and it is always recommended to speak to your doctor and surgeon to discuss the procedures and risks in detail.