Breast Augmentation Surgery in San Antonio: Here’s What You Should Know
Breast augmentation is the most popular cosmetic surgery procedure, with nearly 300,000 procedures performed annually, according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons. Several factors have contributed to the success and popularity of the breast implant procedure, including the introduction of several safe, reliable implant choices, improvements in anesthesia and surgical techniques, an increase in access to plastic surgery, and a generally wider acceptance of plastic surgery procedures and body enhancement. Breast implants also have changed significantly during the past few years. In addition to being safer and longer-lasting, today’s implants offer a softer “touch” and a more natural appearance, and a wide selection of implant sizes has enabled the operation to be customized to both the patient’s anatomy and her preferences and desires.
In short: Women feel more comfortable with the procedure and happier with the outcome. How much happier? According to a 2013 report published in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, the flagship journal of the ASPS, women who undergo breast augmentation have some of the highest satisfaction rates of all cosmetic surgery procedures, with 98% reporting their results met or exceeded their expectations. That’s an astoundingly high satisfaction rate. But that’s not all: 92% of the women interviewed for the study said their implants boosted their self-esteem, and nearly two-thirds said their implants improved their quality of life. Those are some pretty amazing statistics and that’s a big reason why so many women are opting for breast augmentation today. A board-certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Michael Baumholtz. M.D., FACS, is a leader in breast augmentation procedures in San Antonio, relying on a patient-centered approach that’s geared toward achieving the highest levels of patient satisfaction. If you’re considering breast augmentation surgery, here’s what to expect before, during, and after your procedure:
Prior to your surgery, Dr. Baumholtz will perform an in-depth evaluation and physical examination to assess your anatomy and to understand your specific goals and expectations. You’ll need to provide a complete personal and family medical history, and you’ll also need to be prepared to discuss your goals and expectations for the surgery. During your conversation with Dr. Baumholtz, you’ll need to be as specific as possible about your expectations for your surgery and for your new appearance. If you can bring pictures of breasts you like to help define and communicate the results you’re looking for. Dr. Baumholtz will carefully examine your breasts, evaluating the skin quality and texture, the nipple size and location, and other factors that can help guide implant selection and placement. He’ll also take photographs of your breasts to use when planning your surgery and to enable you to see “before and after” comparisons of your breasts. And of course, you’ll have plenty of time to ask questions or discuss any concerns you have about breast augmentation surgery and recovery.
Saline vs. Silicone
Once these steps are complete, you’ll discuss specific options, like implant type and size and the placement of the surgical incisions. As a top plastic surgeon in the San Antonio area, Dr Baumholtz offers the highest-quality implants available, which offer a more realistic “feel” for optimal results. Both saline and silicone implants are available, and each type offers its own advantages. Women who want only a small enhancement to their breast volume or shape may opt for breast augmentation with fat grafting. In this technique, Dr. Baumholtz removes fat tissue from another area on the patient’s body (typically from the buttocks or thighs) and “transplants” it into the patient’s breast area. Since the surgery uses the patient’s own tissue, there’s no risk of rejection; however, the technique is only suitable for minor enhancements or correction of small asymmetries.
For breast augmentation surgery, incisions typically are placed in one of three locations:
- in the crease beneath the breast (called the inframammary fold)
- around the nipple (periareolar incision)
- in the armpit (transaxillary incision)
The decision of which incision site to use will be based on the type of implant being used, your own anatomy, your treatment goals and other factors. Dr. Baumholtz will explain the “pros and cons” of each approach and which one is best for your specific needs. In some women with significant sagging of the skin and other tissues, a breast lift or mastopexy may need to be performed at the same time as the breast augmentation surgery to enable them to achieve the look they want. Depending on the patient’s preferences and goals, other procedures may also be performed at the same time like a tummy tuck to tone and tighten the belly area or liposuction to remove excess fatty tissue.
The Breast Augmentation Procedure
Once you’ve selected your implants and reviewed your surgical options with Dr Baumholtz, it’s time to schedule surgery. Typically your surgery will be performed at a full-scale hospital or certified surgery center. The night before your surgery, you’ll need to stop eating and drinking at midnight and you should also take a shower and wash your hair before bed. On the day of your surgery, you should shower in the morning before leaving for the hospital or surgery center. Dr. Baumholtz will meet with you before your procedure and complete any necessary paperwork with you. He’ll draw a few lines on your skin to help guide the procedure surgery and then it’s off to the operating room! Once the surgery begins, the incisions will be made in the predetermined locations and a “pocket” will be formed in the breast tissue to help hold the implant in place. Depending on the size and type of implant that’s being used and your own anatomy and goals, the implants will be inserted either underneath the chest muscle or on top of the muscle, just beneath the breast tissue. Then Dr. Baumholtz will close the incisions using sutures in the deeper layers of tissue and either sutures or special surgical tape or adhesives to close the skin layer. For primary (first-time) breast implants, most procedures take about an hour, while secondary or revision implant procedures take from one to two hours.
What is recovery like?
Once the surgery is complete, you’ll be moved to a recovery area where you’ll be monitored for an hour or more before being discharged. Your breasts will be wrapped in surgical gauze and covered in a special compression bandage to help facilitate healing and reduce swelling. The first evening after your surgery, you should walk and move as much as possible to facilitate healing and circulation. Dr. Baumholtz will provide you with a complete set of instructions to follow during your recovery, including how to care for your incisions, when you can shower, how active you can be, and advice on how to minimize swelling and discomfort. In most cases, you’ll also receive a prescription for pain medication and sometimes antibiotics. It’s very important to follow Dr. Baumholtz’s instructions closely, including wearing the supportive garment for as long as directed, and to call the office with any questions.
What should I expect in the weeks and months after surgery?
You’ll need to plan on resting for a few days after surgery, and you’ll need to restrict lifting and other physical activity for a couple weeks. During the first two weeks while the incisions are healing, walking is encouraged but strenuous activity and overhead activity like reaching and lifting is prohibited. Two weeks following your surgery, the sutures will be removed and you’ll be instructed how to massage the area to improve healing and reduce residual swelling. From the second to the sixth week following surgery, you’ll be able to perform light physical activity, but you won’t be allowed to lift anything heavier than 10 to 15 pounds. At the six-week mark, you’ll be ready to shop for new bras and bathing suits to fit your new figure, and you’ll be able to return to full activity. Your implants will continue to adjust and settle for about three months or more after your surgery, and it will take about a year for the scars to settle and soften.
Is breast augmentation right for me?
Breast augmentation can offer amazing results for women who are dissatisfied with the size or shape of their breasts. Specifically, breast augmentations surgery can be a good choice for women who want to:
- increase the roundness, fullness and volume of small breasts
- increase the upper volume of breasts that are elongated or “bottom heavy”
- “even out” breasts of noticeably different sizes
- improve the overall proportions of the body so the breasts are “properly sized” for the patient’s shape and stature
- improve the appearance of breasts that have decreased in volume following pregnancy, breastfeeding or weight loss
When thinking about breast augmentation surgery, it’s critically important to focus on your own goals and expectations – not someone else’s – to ensure you achieve the highest levels of satisfaction with your results. In general, to be a good candidate for surgery, you should be in good general health and have realistic expectations about your own goals and what surgery can and cannot do.
Schedule your consultation today.
If you’re considering breast augmentation, one of the most important steps you can take to ensure your surgery goes well is to select a surgeon with significant experience in today’s augmentation mammaplasty techniques. As a skilled and experienced board-certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Michael Baumholtz is committed to providing patients with custom care solutions based on their specific needs, using the most advanced surgical techniques and implant products for optimal outcomes and the highest levels of patient satisfaction. To find out more about breast augmentation surgery and whether it’s a good choice for you, call our office at 210-920-2390 and schedule a personal consultation today.