Breast enlargement - what should you expect and what should you ask?

16 August 2013

MD000723When it comes to breast enlargement, a lot of people know about the end result but not a lot else. But what are the things you need to know before going under the knife?Why and what?You might want to have your breasts enlarged because you feel that they are too small – possibly after losing weight or following pregnancy. You may want to have a breast enlargement to correct a difference in size between your two breasts. There are many reasons to head for a breast augmentation. Your surgeon will discuss the size, shape and type of implants that are most suitable for you during an initial consultation. If you are young and may want to have a family it is likely you will still be able to breastfeed with implants.AdviceIt's important not to rush the decision to go under the knife, you should discuss all your options with your GP. There is the chance they will also recommend a reputable surgeon. Once you have chosen, the procedure should also be discussed with that surgeon. He or she may also draw on your breasts to mark the operation site. It is a good idea to prepare questions to ask about the risks, benefits and any alternatives to the procedure.OperationThe surgeon will explain how to prepare for your operation. For example, if you smoke, you will be asked to stop, as smoking increases your risk of getting a chest and wound infection. The surgery will usually be carried out under a general anaesthetic. This means you will be asleep during the procedure. You will therefore be told to follow fasting instructions – not eating or drinking for around six hours beforehand. The process usually takes between one and two hours. If you have an early operation, there is a chance you will be able to leave hospital on the same day.AfterwardsYou will be given painkillers to help relieve any pain as the anaesthetic wears off. After anaesthetic, you must not drive, drink alcohol, operate machinery or sign legal documents for 24 hours. This means you will need to arrange transport home, also it's advisable to have a friend or relative stay with you for the first day. Stitches are removed after about a week. If you have dissolvable stitches, the amount of time they will take to disappear depends on the type of stitches.RecoveryIf you need them, continue taking painkillers as advised by your surgeon. At both your initial appointment and before you leave hospital; your surgeon will advise you about returning to your usual activities. You may need around two weeks off work.