This is now the most popular cosmetic surgery procedure with women of all ages. The choice in style, shape and texture of implants available is wide, and techniques to ensure a faster more comfortable recovery have been improved such that the overall result now achieves a more natural looking breast.
In Australia and New Zealand the most popular implants are silicone cohesive gel. The contents resemble a firm set jelly and the envelope is a silicone shell with either a textured or smooth surface.
There are several approved suppliers of these implants and each has a symmetrical (round) or anatomical (tear drop) shape option. The choice of implant needs to be discussed with the surgeon to ensure the correct base width and projection are recommended for the volume size required.
The operation can be performed in a hospital or accredited day surgery centre with a full general anaesthetic or local anaesthetic as sedation.
Once the patient is asleep the surgeon makes an incision through the skin and then lifts the breast tissue and, if necessary the muscle, to make a pocket in which to place the implant. The incision is closed with stiches under the skin.
The patient decides where the incision is to be placed. The options are:-
- Under the natural fold of the breast; this is the most popular and is termed the concealed incision
- Around the edge of the nipple; this will result in an invisible incision called ‘invisicion’
- In the arm pit; this can leave a visible scar and is the least popular of all approaches.
The Operating Day
This is a day only procedure taking from 45 mins to 1.5 hrs of operating time- the entire process from arrival at the hospital to discharge takes ½ day. Drain tubes are rarely used in this procedure and the patient will have a small dressing over the wound site.
Each surgeon has a specific protocol for his patients and these will be discussed in detail during the initial consultation.
Frequently Asked Questions
How will I feel?
There will be some pain requiring medication for 3 to 5 days; swelling and discomfort are normal for up to 4 weeks. After this time the breasts will become softer and look and feel more natural.
Most patients find the shape of the breasts continues to improve over a 4 month period
What are the risks?
The breasts can feel hard and look uneven if the scar tissue surrounding the implant contracts - if this happens there will be a short revision necessary
The wound can be slow to heal or breakdown if the patient places pressure on the site within the first 3 weeks, therefore all upper body work and exercise is not recommended during this period
The breast can look unnatural if the implant is positioned incorrectly.
Is there a guarantee?
Each implant supplier has their own guarantee and this will be given to you as part of the decision making process.
All prices are subject to GST. There is no Medicare benefit and private funds do not cover this procedure.
This information is not intended as medical advice.
Any medical questions should be discussed with your surgeon as part of the decision making process.
Pamela Noon 2019