Are Breast Implants Safe? Yes And Here’s Why

Like Goldilocks, some women think their breasts are too big. Others think they’re too small. And amazingly, a small minority of women think their breasts are just right. For women who want larger, fuller breasts, breast implants are a safe, highly successful way to get the breast size they’ve always wanted. 

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What to expect for your breast augmentation procedure

procBreastLiftPreoperative: You will see Dr. Beran the morning of your Breast Augmentation surgery.  He will sit with you and review your choice of implant size, incision location, and type of implant one last time.  Photos will be taken at that time.  In addition, you will meet our anesthesiologist who will answer your concerns and questions about anesthesia.  After you are certain of your decision, you will sign a surgical consent and be brought into the operating room. Your companion(s) will be escorted to the waiting room or directed to the cafeteria in our building.  You do not need to have someone waiting with you.

Surgery: One of our nurses will drape a warm blanket over your shoulders (operating rooms are always cold) and escort you into the operating room.  Our anesthesiologist will check your IV  and you will go to sleep.  The surgery itself will take between 30 and 45 minutes.  You will be given a long-acting local anesthetic while you are asleep (like Novacaine) that will last about 12 hours.  When the surgery is done, you will awaken with a bra, a strap, or just a simple dressing.

Recovery room:  You will spend some time in the recovery room.  Usually an hour or so.  Your companion will be able to sit with you at this time.  When you have recovered, we will review your discharge instructions and bring you to your car.

The first night:   You should rest at home.  You may be a little sore and will certainly feel a little “out of it” for the first night.  Most patients tell us that the discomfort feels like a work-out soreness.  Dr. Beran will call to check on you.  Our surgery center will call you the day after surgery to check on you as well.  You may remove the gauze over your incision and shower 48 hours after surgery.

First postoperative visit:  Your first visit after surgery will be about 5-6 days after surgery.  Dr. Beran will check your incisions and review your care.  All sutures are dissolvable and no stitches need to be removed. You may be instructed to wear a bra, a superior compression strap, or both.

Second visit   You will return to the office about 2-3 weeks after surgery and Dr. Beran will instruct you on massage to keep your breasts moving within the pockets.  This will help keep the implants soft.  You may resume most normal activities.  You are not allowed to do push-ups or other pectoral work for at least six months.  Dr. Beran will examine the feeling and location of your implants.

What Types of Breast Augmentations are there?

Breast procBreastAugaugmentation surgery is designed to improve shape, size, and cleavage of the breast. In almost all cases, the implants (saline or silicone) are placed under the pectoralis muscle. This helps to improve both the feel and appearance of the implants as well as decrease the chances of capsular contracture (a firmness that can occur around the implant). You should continue to obtain your normal mammograms after implant surgery.

Incision size:

The incision is a little more than an inch long. It can be a bit smaller for saline implants because they enter the pocket of the breast empty and get filled once they are inside.

Location of incisions:

Inframammary – under the breast. This is the most common incision. The scar lies within the fold of the breast. This incision is the most direct to the implant pocket. The scar is almost always covered by the overlap of the enhanced breast.

Periareolar – around the bottom of the areola (the pigmented skin around the nipple).

This is the second most common incision. The scar is more visible at the beginning, but after it fades can be almost impossible to see. Although the scar is nearer the nipple, the actual surgery does not go through the breast tissue at that point. This helps preserve the ability to breast feed and minimizes the risk to nipple sensation.

Transaxillary – through the armpit.

This is the least common location. The scars can be very visible if they don’t heal perfectly and they can be seen when you are wearing a bathing suit or some workout clothes.
The long distance between the incision and the lower edge of the muscle makes it more difficult to place the implant precisely.

Breast feeding – Generally speaking, breast augmentation surgery will not interfere with breast feeding.

Even More Interesting Facts About Breasts

We’ve already talked about 10 fun and fascinating things you may not know about breasts, but there are still more! With so much to be discovered about these features of the female chest, it’s no wonder that breasts are so popular. Here are some more interesting facts regarding breasts that many people are unaware of:

  • Unlike most primates’ breasts that only increase in size when lactating, human breasts often begin to grow before menstruation and generally maintain their size after menopause and whether lactating or not.
  • The breasts contain around 20 milk glands that are connected to milk ducts inside the nipple, which are held together with connective and fatty tissues.
  • Brain scan data showed that when women’s nipples were stimulated, the area of the brain that corresponds to the genitals was also stimulated. Some women can actually orgasm just from nipple stimulation.
  • The world’s largest natural breasts belong to Norma Stitz (born Annie Hawkins-Turner). Her bra size is 102ZZZ, and it seems her clever pseudonym is quite appropriate.
  • By the middle of the 20th century the majority of women had abandoned breastfeeding and instead fed their babies formula from bottles. Fortunately, the medical and neurodevelopmental advantages of breastfeeding have been confirmed, and now the majority of women follow the advice of the American Academy of Pediatrics and breastfeed their babies.
  • Within the last few years there has been an explosion of women employing wet nurses to breastfeed their children, and many milk-sharing networks have been established for women who are unable to breastfeed.
  • Perfectly symmetrical breasts are very rare. In fact, the majority of women have a size difference of up to 20 percent between breasts.
  • There are at least four types of nipples: “normal” nipples protrude a few millimeters from the areolas, “flat” nipples only protrude when they’re stimulated, “puffy” nipples have raised areolas, and “inverted” nipples have turned inward to some degree.

If you are interested in a procedure to enhance the appearance of your breasts, Dr. Samuel Beran is highly skilled in a wide variety of procedures. He is certified by The American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS) and can provide healthy, natural-looking results. Please call (212) 792-7938 or fill out our online contact form to schedule your consultation today.

Can Breast Implants Cause Cancer?

There have always been questions regarding the safety of breast implants: Can they be harmful if they leak? Do silicone implants cause a greater health risk than saline breast implants? Can breast implants cause cancer? This last question is one that has been increasingly popular in recent years due to some related cases of anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL), a very rare type of cancer, and breast implants. In a recent U.S. Food and Drug Association (FDA) press release, it is reported that there is a possible association between saline and silicone gel filled breast implants and this type of cancer. Usually found in the lymph nodes and skin, those who have been diagnosed with ALCL typically have undergone breast implant surgery.

However, these findings are still being further investigated in order to learn more regarding the source of the cancer. The FDA is asking all healthcare professionals to report any cases of diagnosis and urge patients to be aware of any changes to their breasts after surgery. There are 60 cases worldwide; however, some of these may be duplicate reports and there may still be some that have not been reported. In any case, it is important to always be cautious when considering breast enhancement surgery. Be sure to ask of the risks related to this procedure in order to be better prepared should you experience any complications.

At my practice, patients may anticipate a safe and professional environment. Along with my staff, I am fully dedicated to patient education and safety throughout your entire procedure. Feel free to browse my site to learn more regarding breast augmentation and to schedule an appointment.