How Is Breast Augmentation Surgery Performed?

Depending on the patient and the desired outcome, breast augmentation can be a very simple or very complex procedure.

How Is Breast Augmentation Surgery Performed?

After pre-operative preparation, the surgery starts by cutting one incision into the patient for each implant. The incisions are small and placed so that the scarring is minimal and hard to see. Once the incision is created, the surgeon must cut a path through the tissue to the final destination of the implant. Once that path has been created, the tissue and/or muscle (depending on placement) must be separated to create a pocket for the implant. This is where the surgeon's skill really comes into play: When deciding where to cut the pocket in the breast, the surgeon must predict what the breasts will look like once the implants are filled. In more extreme augmentation surgeries, this involves repositioning the nipple, adjusting for cleavage and creating a new crease under the breast.

In some cases, augmentation surgery is accompanied by mastopexy (Breast Lift) surgery so that everything ends up in the right place. To aid in positioning, the surgeon may decide to use a sizer or disposable implant. Sizers are temporary implants attached to a tube that the surgeon can work inside the pocket and fill up to test placement, implant size and fill levels. Once this has been tested, the sizer is removed and replaced with the permanent implant.

When inflatable implants are used, they are rolled up like a cigar and pushed into the incision, through the channel and into place. This is true no matter which type of incision is used. Once the implant is positioned, the incision is closed. In the last step, the surgeon uses a syringe to fill the implant with saline through the valve, filling it to the predetermined size. If the patient has opted to use pre-filled implants, the incision will be larger. Inserting textured, pre-filled implants requires the longest incision, providing more room for inserting an implant with a rough shell and for manipulating the less-pliable implant once it's in place.

Breast augmentation is often performed in an office surgical suite or an outpatient surgical center, using local anesthesia (you remain awake). Breast surgery can also be performed in a hospital under general anesthesia (you are asleep). Time in surgery is typically one to three hours.

To Begin The Procedure, An Incision Is Made In One Of Four Primary Iocations :

  1. Inframammary Incision (Crease Or Fold Incision)
  2. Peri-areolar Incision (Nipple Incision)
  3. Transaxillary Incision (Transax Or Armpit Incision)
  4. TUBA Incision (Belly Button, Navel, Or Transumbilical incision)

After the incision, a special surgical tool will be used to form a pocket so that the implant can be inserted.
There are three primary positions where the implants can be placed :

  1. Sub-glandular or above the pectoral muscles
  2. Partial sub-muscular or partially behind the muscles
  3. Complete sub-muscular or completely behind muscles

The choice of incision and implant placement depend on the size and shape of the implant, your body frame, amount of breast tissue and the planned scar location. Patients can choose the type of breast implants. Implant factors include the implant size, shape, and material, in addition to whether or not the implant volume can be adjusted after surgery, all of which should be discussed beforehand with your surgeon.

Saline Versus Silicone Breast Implants