Breast Surgery FAQ

 

Choosing a Breast Augmentation Surgeon

 

Breast augmentation is a major decision and once you've decided to pursue it, you still need to choose a surgeon. Often, the more you look, the more the surgeons appear the same. Here are a few steps to help guide you as you make this important decision:

Ask Friends and Family
Most people, if they haven't had plastic surgery themselves, at least know someone who has. Ask the people you know about their plastic surgery experiences and how they chose their surgeon. Even if the surgeons they went to don't do breast augmentation, they will likely be familiar with other skilled surgeons they could refer you to.
 
Ask Around the Doctor's Office
Doctors, nurses, and other medical staff may know of popular surgeons or, more importantly, surgeons to avoid.
 
Choose a Surgeon who is Board Certified
Look for a plastic surgeon certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery who is also a member of the The American Society of Plastic Surgeons. These organizations screen applicants very closely, so their endorsement can narrow your search.

Schedule Consultations
Once you have a list of breast augmentation surgeons you would like to consider, schedule an appointment to visit each of their offices. This is an excellent opportunity to meet the breast surgeon and staff, view the facility, and learn more about the breast augmentation procedure.
 
Ask Questions
During your consultation, you should have some questions for the surgeon. Pay attention to the way he or she answers your questions; see if you get clear, thorough answers or just a general response.
 
Possible Questions for the Surgeon
Are there other treatment options?
Will I achieve the look I desire?
What are the risks?
Do you think it's worth it?
How many breast augmentation procedures have you performed?
May I see some breast augmentation before and after photos of other patients?
 
Choosing a breast augmentation surgeon is difficult because it is so important. Dr. Workman is happy to meet with you to discuss the procedure and answer any questions you might have. Contact us today to schedule a breast augmentation consultation at our Vancouver or Tri-Cities plastic surgery office.

Breast Surgery: Q&A

Q. Will my ability to breast-feed be affected?

A. It is possible for any breast surgery to interfere with breast-feeding. However, many women with breast implants nurse their babies successfully.

Q. Do breast implants increase my risk of getting cancer? Or detecting cancer?

A. There is no evidence linking breast implants and breast cancer. Recent studies have shown that breast cancer in women with breast implants is detected at the same stages as in the overall population.

Q. Will augmentation breast surgery make asymmetrical breasts more symmetrical?

A. If your breasts have slightly different shapes before surgery, they will remain slightly different after surgery. Breast implant surgery merely adds to the breast tissue you already have. There are other options that do correct asymmetrical breasts, so please feel free to ask questions at your consultation.

Q. Will I lose any sensation in my nipples or skin?

A. It is unlikely that nerves supplying skin or nipple sensation will be damaged; however, it does happen from time to time as the pocket for the implant is being created regardless of how carefully the procedure is performed. If sensory loss does occur, 85% of patients recover sensation in 1-2 years.

Q. How will breast implants affect a mammogram?

A. Always alert the mammography technician to the fact that you have implants. Special techniques will be used and extra views of the breast may be required to see as much of the breast tissue as possible.

Q. Can mammography cause breast implants to burst?

A. Implants should not rupture during mammography, but since the breast is compressed for a mammogram, there is a small risk of rupture.

"Scarless" Surgery: Q&A

Q. What is "scarless" surgery?

A. "Scarless" surgery leaves no obvious scar. Most surgery requires some sort of incision, although as the years go by, incisions have become smaller as instruments get smaller and techniques more sophisticated. A surgeon will always consider the resulting scar when he or she plans to make an incision. Whenever possible, the incision will be made in a discreet location so the scar will go unnoticed.

Q. Can "scarless" surgery be done for breast augmentation?

A. No, although the incisions can be placed in discreet locations. There are four possible incision sites for breast augmentation. If the scar is not visible during ordinary work and social activities, some people regard it as invisible. But of course, you will be able to see your own scar regardless of the incision site you choose.

Q. What are the possible incision sites for breast augmentation?

A. 

  • Transaxillary--in the armpit
  • Inframammary fold--along the crease beneath the breast
  • Peri-areolar--around the areola, the darkened skin around the nipple
  • TUBA--standing for Trans-Umbilical Breast Augmentation and meaning in the navel
Your incision location is partly dependent on the type of breast implant you choose to have. Silicone gel implants come already filled, whereas saline implants are inserted empty and filled afterwards. Because the silicone gel implants are larger when inserted, the FDA has not approved the TUBA incision site for their placement.

Q. If I have the incision placed in the armpit, won't the scar be visible if I stretch my arms?

A. Consider what it best for your daily activities and lifestyle. Some patients with armpit placement complain of being unwilling to lift an arm to toast, play tennis, or engage in other activities that involved full range of arm movement.

Q. Don't silicone gel implants require larger incisions and therefore leave larger scars?

A. Since silicone implants come already filled, they require a larger incision. Since the FDA re-approved silicone gel implants in November 2006, more and more women have been choosing them over the saline implants. The best incision site for this type of implant is the inframammary site--along the crease below the breast. This incision site leaves a thin scar that coincides with the crease, which makes it almost invisible even when no bra or bathing suit is covering it. 
 
If you would like to know more about incision sites and why one would be chosen over another, call or email our Vancouver office to schedule a consultation with Dr. Workman. We are confident that you will find our offices to be friendly and inviting, and our standards to be exceptionally high. We hope to work with you soon.