Explore the Process of Breast Augmentation
Breast augmentation—commonly referred to as breast implants—is currently the most popular procedure that Elizabeth A. Kinsley, MD and her team perform. This surgery is recognized as a safe and effective way to increase breast size and improve shape. Unlike pills and gadgets, the results with implants are immediate and long-lasting. Because Dr. Kinsley performs so many augmentations, she is aware that most prospective patients face a lot of confusing information from friends, the media, or other sources. If you are thinking about breast augmentation, please explore the information below detailing the most important aspects of this procedure.important aspects of this procedure.
What Is Breast Augmentation?
Breast augmentation is an outpatient surgery to enhance the fullness, perkiness, and size of breasts with implants. The main goal of the surgery is to enhance your breasts or restore lost volume after pregnancy, weight loss, or aging, or help obtain your desired look while keeping a natural appearance and feel.
Am I a Good Candidate for Breast Augmentation?
There isn’t a “typical” breast augmentation candidate. Clients have various backgrounds, ages, body types, and reasons for undergoing breast augmentation surgery. The essential requirement for breast augmentation is good physical and emotional health, so be sure to discuss any health concerns during your consultation.
Breast augmentation is not reserved for younger women; Dr. Kinsley’s patients have spanned many age groups, but surgery candidates must be at least 18 years old. Getting implants before complete breast development can diminish results. If you are pregnant or currently breastfeeding, then surgery must be delayed until after delivery and the breastfeeding period.
What Should I Expect During My Consultation?
From your initial consultation to post-op, Dr. Kinsley and her experienced, caring team will assure that you are comfortable and that all your questions are answered. During your initial consultation, Dr. Kinsley will take measurements of your breast size and shape and discuss your desired goals in detail. After considering your natural shape, your goals, and your measurements, you will see how you would look with different-sized implants through 3D imaging technology and a specialized sizing bra. You can even use an at-home sizing kit that can help you better understand your desired breast size privately or give you time to discuss your options with your family.
How Do I Choose the Right Size?
Choosing the ideal implant size is the issue that most women are concerned about and rightly so. A change in implant size (or volume) is one of the most common reasons for reoperation after breast implant surgery. So how do you know what size implant to choose? While looking at pictures and talking to friends that have had the procedure certainly helps, the most important step is to work with an experienced surgeon like Dr. Kinsley. As a recipient of the “Northshore’s Best” award, she is passionate about helping women in Mandeville and the surrounding areas make an empowered decision about their procedure.
Dr. Kinsley has a unique perspective as a female surgeon and uses Crisalix 3D imaging to help you visualize how the shape and size of the implants may look on your body before committing to a breast augmentation surgery. It’s important to remember that implants are sized according to the volume of saline or silicone gel that they hold—cc’s or ml’s—not according to cup sizes.
You should also consider your personal aesthetic goals and physique. What looks good on a celebrity or your friend may not look good on you, particularly if she is 5’10” and you are 5’2″, or if you are thin and she is curvy.
Dr. Kinsley has performed many augmentations over the years and has been asked to make breasts smaller only a handful of times. If a patient is unhappy with the size, it is almost always because she went too small. Patients are encouraged to participate in the selection process by trying on implants of varying sizes. In fact, patients have asked so many times to borrow the trial implants to take home and show their husband or friends, that Dr. Kinsley has developed a patented sizing kit to use at home. The Natrelle kit contains information about breast augmentation, how to choose an implant size, four “try on” implants, a specially made bra to use with the implants, and an instructional DVD. Dr. Kinsley firmly believes that allowing a patient to participate in the decision process is the reason that her rate for reoperation for size is extremely low.
What Questions Should I Ask My Surgeon?
The consultation before your breast augmentation is an opportune time to ask any questions or bring up concerns about your procedure. During this time, Dr. Kinsley will make sure that she understands your vision so that you can set realistic expectations. It is important that the surgeon and patient agree on the desired outcome in order to create a successful result. Some frequently asked questions include the following:
- When can I go back to work?
- How many follow-up visits will I need?
- What are the risks?
- Are there any activities I won’t be able to do after breast augmentation?
- When can I exercise again?
- Can I breastfeed after breast augmentation surgery?
- How long will my results last?
- Do implants affect breast cancer screening?
It is important to have as much information as possible so you will have clear expectations and understand both the surgical and recovery process. We will review all aspects of breast augmentation during the consultation.
How Should I Prepare for My Procedure?
As with most procedures, self-care and proper nutrition will help accelerate your recovery. Smoking can be particularly harmful to your recovery, so it’s important to stop smoking for at least two weeks before the operation and for the entirety of your healing process. Make arrangements for transportation after surgery and proactively arrange your home so there is no need to lift heavy objects post-surgery. For your comfort and to maximize recovery, buy supportive recovery bras that snap or zip in the front. If you have any questions or concerns about any aspect of the procedure or the recovery process, please talk with Dr. Kinsley and her team. They will happily answer all questions and ensure you are properly prepared for your breast augmentation surgery.
Are Any Risks Associated With This Procedure?
As with any surgery, there are risks associated with breast augmentation surgery. Dr. Kinsley takes your health and safety very seriously and will discuss any of your concerns before the procedure. Bleeding, infections, and reactions to anesthesia are possible in any medical procedure but exceedingly rare, and every precaution possible is taken to avoid these.
Contracture, or hardening of the implants, is the most common complication of implant surgery. The body will normally form a capsule (scar tissue) around the implant, but if this tissue thickens abnormally, it can make the implant (and breast) appear misshapen and become painful. Fortunately, many contractures respond to medical treatment. Occasionally, minor surgery is required to release any scar tissue. Fortunately, this happens for fewer than 2% of patients.
Even if a contracture doesn’t occur, the implant may move out of its original position over time. This is often seen with submuscular placement, where over time the implants are pushed downward and out to the side over time. A meticulous surgical technique can help avoid these complications. A bloodless field is very important, and the implant is never touched—the implant is taken from the sterile container and placed into a funnel (like a pastry bag) and into the pocket without touching it. The most likely risk, capsular contracture, can occur at any time, but it is treatable.
What Types of Implants Are Available?
The two most common implant types are silicone and saline. While most patients choose silicone breast implants due to their natural look and feel, some patients still opt for saline implants because if the implant does rupture, the saline (which is just saltwater) will simply be absorbed in the body. However, in many instances, saline does not measure up to the look, feel, and durability of silicone. Often, a saline implant will spontaneously “fail” after several years; the breast goes flat, and the body absorbs the saline without any risk. The silicone implants available today are much stronger and more difficult to damage than silicone implants of the past, and they are available in a variety of shapes, dimensions, and profiles that can be tailored to almost any breast shape or body type.
What Happens During the Surgery?
Typically, the patient will arrive at the surgical center a few hours before the scheduled start time in order to prepare for surgery. The surgery is done on an outpatient basis, under general anesthesia, and takes approximately 45 to 75 minutes. Dr. Kinsley is known to be a perfectionist, but she will make sure not to keep her patients under anesthesia longer than absolutely necessary. When you wake up, you will be wearing a bra and will have small bandages over the incisions. Dr. Kinsley places the implants through any one of the following three incision sites: transaxillary (armpit), periareolar (outer edge of the areola), or inframammary (where the breast meets the chest wall). Using the newest technology allows Dr. Kinsley to use the smaller, more inconspicuous incision sites even when using silicone implants. Once healed, you can wear a bathing suit or sleeveless top without a visible scar. The incision site does not have any effect on recovery time or postoperative discomfort.
Implants are placed either in front of the chest muscle or behind it. This was a really important issue when only saline implants were available, but with the superior look and feel of the new silicone implants, submuscular placement is not as important. Dr. Kinsley currently uses smooth implants in the subglandular position and submuscular for smooth or saline implants. The muscle does not really do anything except camouflage the ripples of a saline implant—it does not hold up the implant or prevent it from sagging. Therefore, if silicone is used, Dr. Kinsley prefers to avoid any potential problems with the muscle (e.g., deformity of the breast when the muscle is flexed) and place the implant behind the breast.
Many patients choose to combine breast augmentation with other procedures to more efficiently meet their aesthetic goals. Some options that work well include breast lift, liposuction, and tummy tuck. You may also consider the mommy makeover, which is a combination of procedures to help return your body to its pre-baby shape.
What Should I Expect During Recovery?
After the procedure, you will need support from a friend or family member to drive you home and assist you after your surgery. This is an important aspect of a safe, comfortable recovery. Expect post-surgery pain, such as a feeling of tightness or stretching from the pressure of the implants on the chest muscles and skin, but it is generally not severe and only lasts a few days. You should avoid heavy lifting or strenuous activity for the first week. During the second week, you may resume light activity or exercise (treadmill, etc.), and should be back to feeling normal by the third week. This is a general estimation, so expect that recovery time can take anywhere from a few days to a couple of weeks, depending on your body.
Bleeding and infection can occur with any surgery, but Dr. Kinsley takes every precaution to minimize these risks. You should not take any aspirin or anti-inflammatory medicine for two weeks prior to surgery and for one week following surgery to reduce the risk of bleeding. If an infection occurs, the implant is removed and then replaced after three to six months. The risk of infection may seem alarming, but, fortunately, it is extremely uncommon due to antibiotics and post-surgery support provided by Dr. Kinsley’s team.
Why Should I Choose Dr. Kinsley?
Dr. Kinsley can offer a feminine perspective on your decision to enhance the shape and size of your profile to help create a more natural result. She is known across the Gulf South for her skill and experience with breast augmentation, and she takes her time to get to know her patients to offer the most honest and accurate professional opinion. As a board-certified plastic surgeon, some of her qualifications and honors include the following:
- Member of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery
- Member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons
- Recipient of the “Northshore’s Best” Award
- RealSelf Top Doctor
- More than 20 years of experience
She is known for her skill and experience with breast augmentation, and Dr. Kinsley has also served as a consultant to Allergan, a leading manufacturer of breast implants.
Schedule an Appointment
Schedule your consultation with Dr. Kinsley to learn more about breast augmentation surgery. Our team looks forward to welcoming you and discussing your options. If you have any questions, call the office at (985) 893-3737. You may also view testimonials to hear how Dr. Kinsley has helped patients achieve their aesthetic goals and browse a gallery of before and after images.