A breast augmentation is one of my favorite procedures to perform. It’s technically challenging. It’s never boring as no two surgeries are alike, and it’s a procedure that delivers a lot of bang for the buck, able to truly transform your entire body contour. And when your body is in proportion, you feel more confident, vital and youthful. Over my many years in practice, I have placed thousands of breast implants. One of the issues I encounter again and again with potential breast augmentation patients is that they place too much emphasis on implant size. In fact, it is incredibly common for a patient to come in telling me how many cc’s she’d like and/or that she wants to be a C or D cup. I then have to explain why it is actually impossible for me to guarantee a cup size, and that size is not the only factor when choosing the right implant because there are so many factors that contribute to an amazing outcome.
Choosing the Right Breast Implant is Like a Recipe
Choosing the right breast implant is a little like a recipe. That chicken dish that you love to eat is delicious not just because of the chicken, but because of the herbs, spices and method of cooking that you choose. Picking a breast implant is about making the right combination of decisions that will deliver on your goals. These include:
- Type of implant (saline or silicone)
- Shape (round or anatomic)
- Placement (above or below the muscle)
- Incision location (inframammary fold or around the nipple)
- Whether or not to include fat grafting for upper pole fullness
So, while implant size is certainly a factor, it is not the only factor. Furthermore, breast implant size is relative.
Breast Implant Must Fit Your Anatomy
I love the internet. It has made my job as a Board-Certified Plastic Surgeon much easier as patients today are so well informed. The downside of the web, however, is that it can create somewhat of a herd mentality. Let’s say that you are scrolling through Instagram, and you see that one of your favorite influencers got 400 cc breast implants and looks terrific. Suddenly, you want 400 cc implants. But here’s the reality: no two bodies are alike so the chances of this implant looking the same on you are slim. In fact, it may not even fit within your chest cavity.
Any breast implant has to conform to your individual anatomy. It must be centered behind your nipple, and the width of the implant cannot exceed the width of your chest wall. Also, if you have more native breast tissue than someone else, you may not need as big of an implant. My goal is to find a range of breast implants in various sizes that will deliver a natural looking result for your body.
What is Your Breast “Look”?
Another problem with focusing on cup size in particular is that there is no standard of measurement between bra manufacturers. This is why I always encourage my breast surgery patients to think about your breast “look”. Circling back to that influencer with the 400 cc breast implants, start compiling a file of photos of breasts that you like. Then, when you come in, we can go through them together. This is one of the best ways to make sure that we are on the same page as it shows me the exact breast “look” you are trying to achieve. Then, we can have an honest conversation about whether or not your desired outcome is possible on your body, and, if so, what is the best recipe for creating the breasts of your dreams.
Smooth, Round, Silicone
I generally use smooth, round, silicone gel breast implants as I feel they deliver the most consistent, natural looking result. Silicone implants are one of the most studied medical devices in the world. Their safety has been proven in multiple studies. In fact, the rupture rate with silicone implants is lower than with saline implants. However, some women want saline. There is nothing wrong with saline implants. They can deliver a beautiful, safe result. The type of implant is a personal choice. My job is to help guide you towards the right recipe of decisions for your anatomy, goals and lifestyle. The latter isn’t something that patients always consider. If, for example, you are a body builder, I most likely would not recommend placing your implants underneath the muscle. Or if you are a big-time runner, we may decide to go a tad smaller in size to put less strain on your breast tissues. I want to not just give you beautiful breasts, but also ones that will stand the test of time. To find out more about a breast augmentation with Dr. Sean Doherty at his Boston or Brookline office, contact us today or call (617) 450-0070 to schedule a consultation.