PATIENT RESOURCES / DR’s Blog
My Advice for Those Considering Breast Augmentation
An area of plastic surgery that I sub-specialize in is surgery of the breast. I love sculpting and creating a beautiful and natural looking breast. I do so with breast implants, with fat transfer and even by moving tissue from one area to another. There is no perfect surgery, and everyone needs something tailored to their own needs and goals. Some patients would look great with a small breast implant that has a teardrop shape; while others may want something larger and fuller at the top of the breast.
Some patients don’t want any breast implant and prefer to just use fat transfer. For others neither fat nor an implant alone will work, in which case I end up using both; the implant provides most of the volume while the fat conceals and softens the edges. I use a technique that I developed and refined after performing countless breast reconstructions and augmentations.
Although each surgical plan should be tailored, there is some terrible advice that should be universally ignored… the idea that you should “always go a little bit bigger with your breast implant than you want just to make sure it looks full” and the similarly misguided advice, “put a large implant in to give you a breast lift”.
I couldn’t disagree more with these statements! That is not to say that women shouldn’t have large implants if they want. For some it will look terrific and match their goals. However, to routinely go big without rationale makes little sense.
I spend a lot of time helping my patients pick the perfect implant size for their goals. I have only ever replaced implants once for a patient of mine, and that was simply because her breasts were too small to fit the implant size she wanted in the initial surgery. We were able to size up to a very nice, but still modestly sized implant several months later. On the contrary, I routinely see patients that had their initial surgery done elsewhere. Not one has ever come to me from another clinic and asked to go bigger. Every single one has come with the request to get their implants made smaller and most also need a breast lift.
The idea that putting an implant in will give the appearance of a breast lift has some merit. But lets look into that idea a bit more. The concept is that the implant will provide volume to the breast, pushing the nipple forward and up – much the same way that a swing rises higher as it swings forward. For patients that need just a little lift it can work great. However, when someone really needs a lift, using a LARGE implant probably won’t, at least not for very long. Sure you may look great on the operating room table. Perhaps even for a few months. However, a LARGE implant weighs a lot. With time, the tissue that was initially really snug around the implant will relax. When it does, there is only one direction that the implant will go… down! Many women might say, “that’s fine, I will get a lift when I need one”. Unfortunately the same is likely to recur with a LARGE implant.
With that being said, here is the advice that I routinely offer to my patients: “Go just big enough to be happy and stop there”. Don’t listen to other people telling you what to do.
We have several techniques that we use to help come to the perfect breast size. Trust your gut. Go with the breast implant size that looks nice for you. It will look natural. It will weigh less. It will be more comfortable. And you will be less likely to need a breast lift in the future. If you are someone that really needs a breast lift now, get a breast lift. Don’t rely on an overly large breast implant to do the lift for you. It simply won’t work over the long run. You will still need a breast lift, but now you will have much larger implants than you originally wanted and run the risk of the same thing happening all over again.
I know my colleagues mean well. They want to offer a simpler surgery. Perhaps they don’t want you to have the scars from a lift. Unfortunately good intentions don’t always turn into good results.
If you are interested in learning more about the bikini bridge, tummy tuck, mommy makeover, liposuction, body contouring or any other plastic surgery procedures, please contact Dr. Rodger Shortt to arrange an appointment at 905-849-4282 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dr Rodger Shortt is a plastic surgeon servicing Toronto, Oakville, Mississauga, Burlington, Milton, Hamilton and Georgetown. He strives to provide his patients the best care and excellent plastic surgery results. He is one of only a few plastic surgeons in Canada with a top rating on RateMD, RealSelf and Ontario Doctor Review. Dr Rodger Shortt is a specialist plastic surgeon trained in cosmetic surgery and reconstructive surgery. He specializes in breast surgery, breast augmentation, breast fat transfer, mommy makeover, tummy tuck, body contouring, breast reconstruction and cosmetic surgery of the face. He is the Director of Cosmetic Surgery Training at McMaster University and an Assistant Clinical Professor. If you are interested in a consultation with Dr Shortt please contact as at 905-849-4282 or visit www.drshortt.com.