Breast augmentation, otherwise referred to as “boob job” or augmentation mammaplasty, is an aesthetic surgical procedure intended to increase breast size or restore its shape. The procedure involves the placement of silicone or saline implants under the breast tissues or chest muscles to achieve the desired results.
History of Breast Augmentation
You will be surprised to discover that breast augmentation is a pretty old practice. The first attempt to perform the procedure was in 1895 by German doctor Vincenz Czerny. The doctor who had removed a tumor from a woman’s breast replaced the damaged tissue with fat — extracted from the woman’s thighs to maintain the breast’s symmetrical appearance.
Early Breast Augmentation Trends
The early fat transfer was followed by several non-surgical experiments, often regarded as a ‘weird injections era.’ From olive oil to paraffin oil and petroleum jelly, the results proved incredibly disastrous as patients exhibited adverse reactions such as inflammation, hard lumps, lung embolisms and even strokes.
Generally, the 19th century exuded innovation, with the first saline implants invented in 1964, textured anatomical implants in 1969 and the gradual improvement of silicone implants. Competitors hard at work came up with various implant materials, shapes, and sizes.
Modern Day Breast Implants
The cosmetic industry has witnessed about six generations of breast implants. The sixth involves the use of advanced technology curated to deliver excellent results while minimizing the risk of complications. It is possible to achieve natural-looking breasts thanks to the latest breast implant options and improved surgical techniques. It is crucial to get the procedure done at a licensed facility and by a licensed cosmetic surgeon.
Reasons for Breast Augmentation
Breast augmentation has been and continues to develop a wide acceptance among the society. Initially considered a cosmetic procedure for women, a common trend is the growing popularity of breast augmentation among the male gender. Typically, this is common among individuals seeking gender reassignment. The procedure is an integral part of their journey towards achieving a more feminine appearance.
Nevertheless, the following are the most common reasons why people get boob jobs;
A study conducted at the University of Florida showed that women between the ages of 21 and 57 were dissatisfied with their breast appearance, often leading to lower self-esteem. Understandably so, as breasts are an integral part of the representation of femininity. On the Rosenberg scale, breast augmentation increases a patient’s self-confidence from 20.7 to about 24.9.
Replace Lost Volume
Breast volume may decrease due to significant weight loss, illness, post-pregnancy or due to age. While these factors are inevitable for most women, breast augmentation considerably improves breast appearance by providing fuller and livelier volume, also restoring youthfulness.
Reconstruction is a major medical reason for aesthetic or cosmetic surgery. Most patients with breast cancer undergo mastectomy, which affects the overall appearance of their chest muscles. Breast augmentation in these patients is more complicated as the procedure involves skin grafting and areola reconstruction in addition to implantation.
Micromastia, also breast hypoplasia, is a medical condition diagnosed when the female breast does not develop fully post-puberty. Breast augmentation can address cosmetic concerns, especially if the condition is affecting the patient’s emotional and psychological wellness.
Possible Risks of Breast Augmentation
Although considered a cosmetic procedure, breast augmentation bears various risks, like all other surgeries. Possible risks include:
- Anesthesia side effects like nausea, vomiting, chills, sore throats or confusion
- Fluid accumulation
- Poor scarring
- Changes in breast and nipple sensation
- Implant leakage or rupture
- Changes in Implant position
- Breast Implant associated cancers
- Breast Implant Illness
Frequently Asked Questions
What Should You Expect During a Breast Augmentation Consultation?
Essentially, a breast augmentation consultation is your chance to learn more about your doctor and the facility and discuss what you want to achieve. The doctor will ask why you want the procedure and about your desired outcome.
Additionally, they will ask if you have any underlying medical conditions, drug allergies, previous and current medical treatments, including medications, vitamins and supplements, and other tendencies such as alcohol, tobacco and drug use.
The surgeon proceeds to evaluate your general health and undertake necessary tests to examine for potential risks such as breast cancer. The examination typically includes taking breast measurements, checking skin quality and the placement of areola and nipples. The doctor should also take you into possible options and outcomes, factoring in any potential risks.
How Much Is Breast Augmentation?
The American Society of Plastic Surgeons reports that the total costs of breast augmentation could range anywhere between $6000 to $12000. The cost variation depends on the type of implant used, the facility or doctor, location and the number of procedures required to achieve desired results. The cost may go higher when complications are involved.
How Long Does It Take to Recover After Breast Augmentation?
Most patients take between 6 to 8 weeks to fully recover. It is possible to heal faster by following post-operative instructions and taking prescribed medication. The recovery phase is slower for some compared to others; therefore, it is wise to seek clearance before returning to work or resuming normal activities like exercises.