If you are considering enhancing your appearance with breast surgery, you may have considered breast implants.
Also called breast augmentation, this surgery is performed for a number of reasons. Some seek implants because they’ve had their natural breasts removed due to breast cancer. Others are mothers who are finished having children and want to reclaim their pre-baby confidence with younger looking, perkier breasts. Still others have never been happy with their breasts and are finally seeking a solution.
No matter your reason for breast augmentation surgery, it’s always a good idea to do your research before committing to the procedure. While breast augmentation is one of the most common cosmetic surgeries today, it never hurts to learn everything you can before making a final decision.
In the following article, we’ll go over the basics, starting with the different types of implants available. We’ll then move on to how much you should expect to pay for the surgery, possible risks and complications, and what recovery is like.
Types of Breast Implants
There are two main types of breast implants available: silicone and saline implants. There is also a newer type —gummy bear implants — which is becoming increasingly popular.
Silicone breast implants involve a silicone shell that is filled with silicone gel. These can pose several risks in the event that they leak, which your surgeon will go over with you as you are choosing the type of implant you want. At the same time, it’s a common belief that silicone implants feel more realistic than other types of implants.
Essentially, if a silicone breast implant leaks, it can be hard to notice because the silicone will be trapped inside the entire implant capsule. This can cause complications if left alone. As a result, most surgeons will have you return periodically for tests to ensure that your silicone implants are intact.
Saline implants also have a silicone shell, but inside is saline solution (sterile saltwater). Saline implants may not feel or look as realistic as silicone implants, which is usually because of rippling on the skin. But if they leak, you’ll know right away because the breast will “deflate.”
Of course, any time a breast implant leaks, it can always be fixed and/or replaced by your surgeon. It’s just important to catch it right away.
Finally, there are gummy bear implants. These are essentially the same as silicone implants, but they tend to be firmer because the gel consistency inside is thicker. Many people say they also have a more natural feel because they generally hold their shape better.
How Much Do Breast Implants Cost?
There’s unfortunately no easy answer to this question. The total cost of your procedure will always depend on the geographical location in which you get surgery, the particular surgeon you go to, what type of implant you choose, and whether or not you are getting accompanying procedures done at the same time.
The most common accompanying procedure is, of course, a breast lift. Many women opt for both a breast lift and breast augmentation (breast implants) if this is an option for them. Other procedures such as liposuction, tummy tucks, etc. may be combinable with breast augmentation as well. Ultimately, combining procedures can lower the individual costs of each procedure, but overall, you will naturally be paying more.
To give a rough estimate, most surgeons in the United States will charge between $5,000 and $10,000 for breast implant surgery alone. Keep in mind that health insurance companies will generally not cover breast augmentation unless it is done for medical reasons. For example, if you had to have a mastectomy as a result of breast cancer, your insurance company may pay for reconstructive surgery, which in most cases, would involve implants.
Possible Risks and Complications With Breast Implants
As with any major surgery, there are possible risks and complications. Specifically for breast implant surgery, these include the following:
- Risks while under anesthesia
- Rupture or leakage of implants
- Noticeable scarring
- Tight scar tissue near the implant
- Skin wrinkling around the implants
- Seroma (fluid accumulation)
- Bad implant positioning (and a possible need for revision implant surgery)
- Pain that won’t go away
These risks are important considerations as you think about getting breast implant surgery. Most breast augmentation surgeries go well and have positive outcomes, but if you have questions or concerns about these risks and complications, be sure to bring them up with your surgeon at your consultation appointment.
What Is Recovery From Breast Augmentation Like?
After breast implant surgery, expect to have some discomfort and pain for a few days. Your chest area will have bandages and gauze covering it, and it’s possible your surgeon will have used drainage tubes to reduce swelling and fluid buildup. Compression garments will be essential as you continue to recover, and you’ll need a lot of rest.
Your surgeon will discuss the specifics with you, but in general, you should stop major physical activities and avoid heavy lifting for about six weeks or more after your surgery. To help with pain and discomfort, your doctor may prescribe pain medications, and OTC pain relievers may be recommended as well.
Of course, you’ll want to be sure to schedule some time off from work or school after your surgery. You’ll also need someone you trust to take you home from the surgical facility as you will still be recovering from the anesthesia.
When it comes to seeing changes, you’ll notice larger breasts right away after surgery. Still, it’s important to wait until the swelling goes completely down before assessing your final results.
Book Your Consultation With Dr. Sieber
Dr. Sieber specializes in cosmetic breast surgeries in the San Francisco Bay Area. His dedication to patient care and high skill-level within every area of his practice have made him one of the most sought-after surgeons for those seeking breast augmentation.
If you are looking for first-class for your cosmetic surgery, look no further than Dr. Sieber. See our before and after gallery for examples of those who have undergone breast augmentation with Dr. Sieber, and to learn more, book your consultation appointment today.