When Procedure is Used
Women have breast augmentation done for a variety of reasons. You may want to enhance your appearance in general by increasing your breast size, or you may want both breasts to be more similar to each other in shape and size if they are uneven. For some women, breast implants are a way to improve how they feel about themselves. You may also have had a single or double mastectomy and would like to reconstruct your breast(s) to restore your natural appearance. The reason why you are seeking breast augmentation will also determine whether and how the procedure is covered by insurance, and breast implants can lead to some complications if you plan to breastfeed in the future and when you have mammograms done.
You may be given a general anesthetic to relax your muscles, prevent pain, and help you fall asleep, but sometimes patients are only given local anesthesia to numb the area. Next, your surgeon will make incisions under your breast, under your arm, and around your nipple. Through these incisions, your surgeon will create a pocket by separating the breast tissue from your chest and will place the implant into this pocket. Once the implant is centered, your surgeon will close the incisions, usually with stitches.
The risks are low. However, potential risks might include
- allergic reactions to medications.
- pain and swelling
- changes in nipple and breast sensation
- uneven appearance
- a rupture of the implant, which causes the saline or silicone to leak
- procedural complications with mammograms and maintenance of the implants
- hampering of breastfeeding abilities
- enhanced appearance
- improved self-confidence, self-esteem, and body image
- restoration of appearance with reconstruction