Quiz

Breast Augmentation

Most Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Breast Implants

17 Apr 2023

Deciding to go ahead with Breast Augmentation Surgery or any cosmetic procedure is a big decision that should not be taken lightly.  It is essential that you do your research and do not commit to anything until you are sure you can make an educated decision.  We have put together some of the most frequently asked questions that patients have at their consultations.

      1. How long do breast implants last?

        We use high-quality, German-made implants. It is recommended to remove and replace your implants every 10-15 years as they age. It is advised to have your implants checked for ruptures regularly. If you are not having any issues and your checks show no problems with the implants, you do not need them replaced after ten years. However, after 15 years, you should seriously consider replacing the implants to reduce the risk of complications. Complications are more expensive and harder to repair than standard removal and replacement.

      2. Are saline or silicone implants better?

        In our opinion, the new cohesive silicone implants are a significant improvement on saline implants, giving a more natural look and feel.  In regards to safety, if they rupture, the sticky cohesive gel helps them to maintain their shape. This is an improvement on PIP implants, which were filled with a low-grade gel that would leak out like treacle instead of sticking together like Turkish delight.

      3. Is the above-the-muscle or below-the-muscle placement better?

        This debate was well covered at recent lectures at the American Society of Cosmetic Breast Surgery Conference that Dr Murray attended. Under the Muscle was very popular a few years ago. However, there was an increased rate of bottoming out, double bubble and wide cleavage, this was seen as a problem even up to 9 years later. The newer dual plane technique, where the muscle and the bottom part cover the implant’s top position, does not seem to be the favourite option. The newer polyurethane implants placed above the muscle but under the fascia have also increased in popularity. This is because smaller implants can often be used, and the risks of snoopy deformity or floppiness are lower. More information about breast implant placements is available on our breast implant procedure page. Some studies have shown that placement below the muscle gives a lower rate of capsular contracture. This has been strongly contested as sometimes you feel it a little later, and by then, it may be too late to use medications. It is essential to consider all options, as all placements have pros and cons.

      4. Should I get round or teardrop implants?

        A fascinating study has recently shown that people could not tell the difference between round implants and teardrop implants when photographed. Our Polytech implants are very interesting as they have a semi-teardrop shape, although they are rounded, so if the implant turns, which can be up to 8%, no visual abnormality will be present.

      5. Should I get smooth, textured or polyurethane implants?

        There are advantages and disadvantages with all implants, although macro textured, a very coarse implant, should be avoided. We use smooth and polyurethane implants. Polyurethane implants will adhere, giving more support to the breast, and they are reported to have a lower capsular contracture rate. Our rate of capsular contracture is less than 1% with any implant; this is considerably lower than the average (reported as between 4 and 6%). Due to less support, smooth implants can drop faster, but the risk of lymphoma is shallow. We use Polytech implants worldwide. There have been no reported cases of lymphoma with smooth implants, and there has only been one reported case with polyurethane implants.

      6. Is Breast Implant Associated-Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma (BIA-ALCL) a breast cancer?

        The simple answer to this question is no. BIA-ALCL can occur when the breast implant causes local irritation, which can cause lymphoma cells to collect in a swelling. If ignored, this can spread to the rest of the body and prove fatal, although this is very rare.

      7. Is breast implant illness an actual condition?

        The FDA has recently released a statement that no well-performed study has shown that breast implant illness is possible. However, it needs further investigation. It must be remembered that worldwide reports of breast implant illness are deficient.  Hundreds of thousands of people worldwide have breast implants with no issues.  There are Facebook communities of people who have similar symptoms; however, while these communities may seem significant, this is a tiny minority of people with breast implants.  In our opinion, this needs more investigation as it can be a low-grade infection. Capsular contracture is possibly related to a low-grade infection; this infection may not have caused the hardening of the implant but has caused the patient to feel unwell.

      8. Where is the best place to have an implant inserted?

        It is commonly agreed that the axilla and areola region have a higher capsular contracture rate and possible bleeding. Therefore, the crease under the breast seems to be the best place to insert the implants.

      9. What is the risk of needing a lift after implants?

        Worldwide, this runs at approximately 2% and can occur in the first year or as late as 18 – 20 years later, depending on a few characteristics, activities, and pregnancies. Sometimes this can be unpredictable, and patients will need a lift unexpectedly. The new Polytech implants with the polyurethane coating seem to have a lower risk of this.

      10. When can I resume exercise?

        This is variable, but in the first two weeks post-procedure, you must be very cautious as bleeding may result in being taken back to the theatre, incurring obvious inconveniences and expenses. Our rule is for the first-week post-procedure, only walking around the house is permitted. Week 2, light exercise or bike riding is allowed, and from 3 weeks, working up from 1kg upper body exercise, slowly but carefully. A regular gym routine can be possible by six weeks, but extreme exercise should be delayed for three months.

      11. What can I do to help have a successful procedure?

        Eating wisely and taking essential supplements to ensure good gut health is the main thing.  Making sure you are your average weight and that you are not going to lose or gain a lot of weight also helps.

      12. When can I travel?

        We recommend waiting two weeks for short flights and one month for long flights. It is essential to be aware that for the first six weeks, it is ideal to be close to your doctor and clinic. Within the first six weeks, post-procedure is when we see most complications after overseas surgery. Bleeding, infection, bottoming out, wide cleavage and high-riding implants in most places can be prevented or treated early with good care. The NSW Health Department recently said that if a doctor does not give good aftercare, they should not be a doctor.

      13. What will my result be like?

        Results from Breast Augmentation can vary depending on the condition of the breasts to start with.  It is essential to be realistic and work with your body. Breasts with good measurements and in good condition will get a better result on average. If your skin quality and elasticity are poor, the result will be an improvement but not necessarily as good as a friend who had more favourable anatomy pre-procedure.

      14. Should I get breast implants before or after the children?

        This is a tricky question to answer and depends on your choices. Some patients say to us they wish they had the implants beforehand, and it has been noted that with some patients, polyurethane implants adhere to the tissue and prevent sagging. So, the answer to this is not clear, although what is clear is most women enjoy having breasts if they have not had them before or filling their breasts up again after they have become empty.

      15. What size of Breast Implant should I get?

        It is essential to realise that the best implant for you will depend on your measurements and body. A friend, or someone who looks very much like you in the breast area, may have very different sizes. The critical measurements are between the nipple and the crease, the width of the breast and the distance between the top of the sternum and the nipple. It is also a great idea to go online and look up the pen test to learn how to assess ptosis. Everybody heals. Differently, one may get a very tight, thick, scar-like capsule around the implant, and another may get a loose pill that is not as perky. Therefore, it isn’t easy to assess precisely what size you will be.

        The most common complaint post-procedure is that the patient wishes they had chosen a larger implant. We often stop partners and family members from commenting on the implant size selected while in the fitting room as we want the patient to choose for themselves. We always advise the patient to choose a size a little bigger to avoid this problem. It is very uncommon for women to say they have gone too large. We offer Crisalix, a VR system that allows you to ‘try before you buy’.  Crisalix scans your body, and once you select the preferred implants, it will create an ‘after’ image of your surgery. This is very accurate, but not 100%, and you must be aware of this.

      16. Can I remove my implants if I don’t like them or feel unwell?

        It is scarce to feel unwell due to breast implants, and Breast Implant Illness has not been proven.  We have had some patients who thought they had Breast implant Illness, and upon removing their implants, we found that their implants had a small rupture that their ultrasound examination had missed. Some women choose to go smaller or have their implants removed. This is a straightforward process in most cases, but the outcome is again variable. Some tissues bounce back amazingly well, and some do not.

      17. What are the real risks of travel surgery?

        We have seen many patients who have complications after overseas surgery even though they have done lots of research. Sometimes this is a tragedy as their problems cannot be repaired. Even worse, it is a severe complication that can lead to long-term health problems. Many doctors in Thailand are not insured, and getting compensation from them is nearly impossible. Some people are suing the local travel agents for payment or even their friends that may have taken a kickback from the hospital for the referral. There are three main components to problems with travel surgery.

        • The travel itself:

          You have a higher risk of clots that can develop or travel to your lungs when flying after surgery. These clots can kill you after any surgery in the first few weeks.

        • Not having your doctor nearby:

          This causes a considerable amount of problems. Patients often comment on everything going wrong as they struggle to get aftercare.

        • Many of the cheap places are just that:

          Many hospitals make cuts from good patient care to offer lower prices. The stakes are often in areas that would not be obvious to people outside the medical field. The third world is the third world, backup medical care is costly, and the standards are not comparable. Unfortunately, most people find this out once it is already too late.

        Complications can happen anywhere and are always risks, not only when travelling overseas. However, the chances are lower when your doctor is nearby and can provide aftercare.

       

For more information on Breast Augmentation at Absolute Cosmetic, see our breast implant procedures. Dr Glenn Murray has over 20 years of full-time experience in Cosmetic Medicine and has performed hundreds of Breast augmentation with a meagre complication rate.  We offer complimentary consultations with our nursing team. Contact us today to book a consultation.

Please note that this information is generalised. If you would like information specific to you, please book a consultation.

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Dr. Glenn Murray (AHPRA Registration MED0001196978) Registered Medical Practitioner. General disclaimer: Patient outcomes can vary due to factors such as... genetics, diet, age, exercise, lifestyle, weight, and overall health. It’s essential to understand that all invasive surgeries come with inherent risks and require a recovery period and specific care regimen. Detailed information regarding surgical risks and complications is available here, but it is advisable to conduct thorough research and obtain a second opinion to ensure you are able to make an informed decision. Please note that the information provided is general in nature and does not constitute medical advice or establish a doctor-patient relationship. For real patient images, please visit our Before and After page. Please be advised that surgical outcomes vary, from patient to patient, and comprehensive research is crucial before making any decisions. This website contains imagery which is only suitable for audiences 18+.

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