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Breast Augmentation

If you are considering your options to enhance volume, shape, and fullness in the breasts, a breast augmentation may be the ideal treatment. With the placement of silicone or saline breast implants, our board-certified plastic surgeon can increase the size of the breasts and improve symmetry while creating better balance among breast and body proportions. Dr. Thomas Crabtree is extensively trained in state-of-the-art breast augmentation techniques and has performed this procedure many times over the years. He will be happy to meet with you to talk about your goals and determine whether breast augmentation is the ideal option for your needs. 

“I highly recommend Dr. Crabtree and his team. I am beyond pleased with the results of my breast augmentation and could not have chosen a better team to work with. Dr. Crabtree’s credentials speak for themselves and his team is certainly on par. At every stage of my journey, Dr. Crabtree and his team were available to answer any questions/concerns I had.”

Breast Augmentation at a Glance

  • Typically an outpatient procedure performed in a fully equipped operating facility 
  • The length of the surgery is approximately 1-1.5 hours for most patients 
  • General anesthesia will be administered by a board-certified anesthesiologist 
  • Silicone or saline breast implants can be used to enhance breast volume 
  • Recovery time for most patients is about one week before resuming normal daily routines; strenuous activity should be avoided for at least three weeks 
  • A special type of bra may be necessary for up to two weeks in order to control swelling and facilitate healing. Bruising, swelling, and soreness in the breasts are common side effects during the recovery process. 
  • Initial results should be immediately noticeable and continue to improve as the breasts “settle” over the next several months  

What Is Breast Augmentation?

Breast augmentation, also referred to as breast enlargement, is a surgical procedure that utilizes the placement of saline or silicone breast implants to increase the size of the breasts. Breast augmentation is one of the most popular cosmetic surgery options in the United States, and has remained so for many years. This treatment offers a variety of benefits for women who would like to enhance the appearance of their breasts, including: 

During your initial consultation with Dr. Crabtree, he will evaluate your needs and discuss the many different options available for breast augmentation. Once you and Dr. Crabtree have decided that this procedure is right for you, he will develop a treatment plan that is completely customized to your goals and expectations. By custom-designing breast augmentation to each patient’s specific needs, Dr. Crabtree is better able to create results that accomplish individual goals while looking as natural as possible. 

What Are My Breast Implant Options?

Crabtree Plastic Surgery typically utilizes Sientra® and Allergan® breast implant models. Those particular companies are two of the most prominent breast implant manufacturers in the world, and offer many of the most popular implant selections for breast augmentation. Today’s breast implants come in a wide variety of types, shapes, and sizes. You will be provided with a detailed look at the many options available at our practice, and Dr. Crabtree will explore the selections with you to help you determine which breast implants are the most ideal for your body type and your ultimate goals. All in all, the best outcomes from this procedure typically result from implants that enhance not only breast size and shape, but also the effect on overall body proportions. 

The two major types of breast implants to choose from are: 

Saline Breast Implants 

Saline breast implants are implants made of a silicone shell that encases a salt-water solution. While saline implants may not be as popular as their silicone counterparts, they have successfully been utilized in breast augmentation procedures for decades, and they can be a more ideal or preferable choice for some patients. Saline breast implants can often be inserted into the breasts while they are still empty, and then filled after they have been placed. This process can allow for meticulously symmetrical and proportioned outcomes, in addition to less post-operative scarring. Also, in the event that a saline implant ruptures, the saltwater solution can be safely absorbed by the body. 

Silicone Breast Implants 

Silicone breast implants are composed of a thick silicone gel surrounded by a silicone outer shell. These implants are known to create a very natural look and feel, and the risk of “rippling” is typically very low. Some types of silicone implants are known as “gummy bear” implants, which often utilize a very cohesive gel that can hold its shape. Silicone breast implants can be an ideal selection for women who are quite thin. Since ruptures may be less noticeable with a silicone breast implant, patients are typically advised to periodically undergo special mammograms/x-ray exams or MRIs to ensure the implant’s structure has not been compromised. 

What Does the Breast Augmentation Consultation Entail? 

Your initial consultation with Dr. Crabtree is an extremely important step in the breast augmentation treatment process. During this meeting, you are strongly encouraged to be as forthright as possible about your goals and expectations, and Dr. Crabtree welcomes any and all questions you may have. He will talk with you about your concerns and explain all aspects of the procedure so you have a full understanding of the treatment, recovery, and the potential results. Dr. Crabtree will also discuss variables of the surgery such as the ideal implant type and size, the best incision location and surgical technique for your needs, and other components of the treatment. Once you have decided that you would like to go forward with breast augmentation, Dr. Crabtree will create a customized treatment plan, schedule the date for surgery, and provide you with pre-operative instructions so you will know how you can prepare. An additional pre-operative appointment will also be scheduled to finalize the treatment plan before surgery takes place. Dr. Crabtree makes thorough and honest communication between doctor and patient a top priority at our practice, and he wants you to feel comfortable asking any questions you may have at any time. 

How Is the Breast Augmentation Procedure Performed?

For most of our patients, the breast augmentation procedure is performed on an outpatient basis at Windward Surgery Center, which is a fully-equipped surgical facility that includes a board-certified anesthesiologist to administer general anesthesia. While there are a few different techniques that can be utilized to place the breast implants, Dr. Crabtree often uses the inframammary approach (through an incision made under the breast) and the Keller Funnel method (described below). The implants will be placed either in front of the chest muscle or behind it—Dr. Crabtree will talk with you about the locations during your consultation to determine which option will be more ideal for your particular needs. 

The entire breast augmentation procedure typically takes about 1 to 1.5 hours, however, the total length of time varies among patients.

Keller Funnel Technique for Silicone Implants

The Keller Funnel technique is an advanced implant placement approach that Dr. Crabtree may recommend for silicone breast augmentation procedures. This method is known as a “no-touch” technique—it is designed to allow the plastic surgeon to place the implants into the breasts without having to handle them during insertion. It also makes it possible for the implants to be placed without touching or rubbing against the skin. This process can reduce the risk of bacterial contamination affecting the outer shell of the breast implant, in addition to allowing for smaller incisions for placement. The Keller Funnel technique can also minimize trauma at the incision locations—which can diminish post-operative soreness—and reduce the overall length of the operation. 

What Is Recovery from Breast Augmentation Like? 

Most patients who undergo breast augmentation are able to resume most of their normal daily activities after about one week. For several days after the breast augmentation procedure has been performed, some degree of swelling and discomfort can be expected, so over-the-counter pain medication is often very helpful to control pain during recovery. It is also common for patients to be prescribed a special bra to be worn for a temporary period following surgery that can help facilitate the healing process. Strenuous activities or exercise will need to be avoided for a minimum of two to three weeks. Dr. Crabtree will provide you with specific recommendations along with detailed post-operative guidelines. The noticeability and extent of breast augmentation scars will depend on the specific surgical technique utilized. Dr. Crabtree works diligently to create incisions that are as inconspicuous as possible, and many patients find that the residual scars fade to a certain extent over time. 

Do you have questions about breast augmentation? Please don’t hesitate to contact Crabtree Plastic Surgery for more information, or to schedule an appointment.