The goal of breast augmentation with implants is to increase your bust to a size and shape that matches the rest of your body. A proportionate breast and body offer natural-looking results. Charles S. Lee, MD, is a double board-certified plastic surgeon at Enhance® Plastic Surgery® who can determine the best implant size, type, incision site, and placement to achieve your desired look.
1. Breast Implant Size and Type
The size of your breast implant will impact your comfort level and the appearance of your results. Implants are measured in ccs rather than cup dimensions and may range from 200cc to 600ss. The ideal size for your breast implants depends on your anatomy and whether you wish for a natural appearance after breast augmentation. Most women want larger breasts that don’t look overly large or unnatural.
The type of implant you choose will affect your results and other details of the procedure, such as the incision site and placement. Silicone implants are FDA-approved for adults 22 and older, and saline implants are FDA-approved for 18 and up. Silicone breast implants mimic the feel of human fat, offering a more natural texture and appearance. Saline breast implants are filled to the desired size after they’re placed in the breasts and require a smaller incision. Saline implants show leaks or ruptures immediately, while silicone implants require MRIs to diagnose these complications.
2. Breast Augmentation Incision Site
The periareolar and inframammary incisions are the most commonly used incision sites for breast augmentation in the United States. The periareolar approach creates an incision in the lower portion of the areola to conceal the resulting scar. This option may be best for women who combine their breast augmentation with breast lift, have a history of hypertrophic scarring (thick, raised scars), or have a poorly defined inframammary fold (breast crease) under the breast.
The inframammary incision is made along the breast crease to expose the pectoralis muscle interface and breast tissue. This approach offers the plastic surgeon maximum access to the tissues to place the breast implants. The inframammary incision site is the most popular approach and is best for patients with no history of unfavorable scarring and well-formed inframammary folds.
3. Breast Implant Placement
Breast implants are positioned over the chest muscle (subglandular) or under it (submuscular). The right choice for you depends on your body type, implant size, implant type, and your cosmetic goals for your breasts.
Subglandular placement positions the breast implant between the chest muscle and the existing breast tissue so the implant sits below the breast glands. Women with subglandular breast implants have a higher chance of successfully breastfeeding future children. This technique causes the implants to move less during exercise or activities and leads to less discomfort after the procedure. However, subglandular implants may look more artificial and affect the accuracy of mammograms.
Submuscular placement positions the breast implant partially under the pectoralis major chest muscle and provides more accurate mammograms. This placement option provides more natural-looking results and tends to lead to fewer cases of capsular contracture in which the scar tissue capsule around the implant tightens and squeezes the implant. However, submuscular breast implants may cause more discomfort after the procedure and require a longer recovery.
If you’re interested in breast augmentation, schedule a consultation at Enhance® Medical Center in Beverly Hills, California. Contact Dr. Lee to discuss your cosmetic concerns and goals for your breasts at (310) 271-5954.