Feeling good about the way you look can help you feel happier and more able to live life to the full. The decision to have breast augmentation surgery, or a ‘boob job’ as it is commonly known, is a highly personal one. Only you can know the impact of having breasts you’re not happy with, and the difference that breast implants will make to the way you feel about your body.
Most women who undergo breast augmentation opt to increase their breasts by one or two bra cup sizes, aiming for a natural look which flatters their frame and body size, though you can go larger if you wish. Our 3D body imaging service can be used to help you choose your ideal size, helping you to visualise your end results.
The decision to have a breast enlargement or breast augmentation surgery requires careful thought and consideration. We’re here every step of the way to provide information and guidance so that you can make the choice that’s right for you.
When you attend your initial consultation, we will examine your breasts and discuss the results we would hope to achieve for you. You may like to consider our 3D body imaging service to help you get a clearer picture of how you will look with breast implants.
Breast implants give the best results for women who are healthy and emotionally stable. We always remind patients that implants are a great way to enhance your appearance and self-confidence, but that you should maintain realistic expectations about the overall impact on your life.
The actual surgery involves having implants inserted into each breast. An implant is a silicone shell filled with either silicone gel or a salt-water solution known as saline.
The method of inserting and positioning your implant will depend on your anatomy, although the incision will be made usually in the crease where the breast meets the chest. Occasionally the cut is made around the nipple. Breast tissue and skin is lifted to create a pocket for each implant, either directly behind the breast tissue or underneath your chest wall (pectoral) muscle.
The surgery usually takes one to two hours to complete and you will have permanent scars, usually in the groove below the breasts, although these will fade with time and can be hidden by clothing.
Breast enlargement is a relatively straight-forward and common procedure but, as with any operation, there are risks and potential complications.
The most common problem, capsular contracture, occurs if the scar or capsule around the implant begins to tighten, causing the breast to feel hard. Treatment can involve either removal or ‘scoring’ of the scar tissue, or the removal or replacement of the implant.
Although rare, excessive bleeding following the operation may cause some swelling and pain. If excessive bleeding continues, another operation may be needed to control it and remove the accumulated blood. Occasionally, the scars left after surgery become red and lumpy.
A very small percentage of women develop an infection around an implant. This may occur at any time, but is most often seen within a week after surgery. In some cases, the implant may need to be removed for several months until the infection clears before a new implant is inserted.
In addition, some women report that their nipples become oversensitive, under-sensitive, or even numb. There may also be small patches of numbness near the incisions – these usually disappear within time, but may be permanent in some patients.
Occasionally, breast implants may break or leak. Rupture can be caused by injury or even from the normal compression and movement of your breast and implant, causing the shell to leak.
If a break occurs in a gel-filled implant, however, one of two things may occur. If the shell breaks but the scar capsule around the implant does not, you may not detect any change. If the scar also breaks or tears, especially following extreme pressure, silicone gel may move into surrounding tissue. The gel may collect in the breast and cause a new scar to form around it, or it may migrate. There may be a change in the shape or firmness of the breast. Both types of break will require a second operation and replacement of the leaking implant. In some cases, it may not be possible to remove every particle of the silicone gel in the breast tissue if a rupture occurs.
A few women with breast implants have reported symptoms similar to diseases of the immune system, such as scleroderma and other arthritis-like conditions. These symptoms may include joint pain or swelling, fever, fatigue, or breast pain. Research has found no clear link between silicone breast implant sand the symptoms of what doctors refer to as ‘connective-tissue disorders’.
While there is no evidence that breast implants cause breast cancer, they may change the way mammography is done to detect cancer. Mammograms are less accurate following breast implants and about 8% of breast tissue cannot be visualised after this operation. Ultrasound examinations may be of benefit in some women with implants to detect breast lumps or to evaluate an implant. When you request a routine mammogram, you’ll need to go to a radiology centre where technicians are experienced in the special techniques required to get a reliable x-ray of a breast with an implant. Additional views will be required.
If you develop a breast lump, aspiration with a needle is possible but requires ultrasound guidance so you may need to be referred to a specialist centre.
While most women do not experience these complications, we feel it’s important to discuss them with you at the time of your initial appointment so that you can make an informed decision about whether breast enlargement surgery is right for you.
While the media often focuses on celebrities who have increased their breast size significantly, most women want to be a size which is in proportion to their overall physique. By increasing your breast size by one or two bra cup sizes you’ll achieve a more voluminous cleavage which still looks natural.
During your initial consultation it’s important that we understand what you hope to achieve so that we can discuss the right approach for you. It may be appropriate for you to take advantage of our 3D body imaging service to help you get a clearer picture of what the result will look like.
During this consultation, we will evaluate your health and explain which surgical techniques are most appropriate for you, based on the condition of your breasts and skin tone. If your breasts are also sagging, we may recommend a breast lift alongside your breast enlargement surgery.
If you do decide to go ahead, we will provide you with all the information you need to prepare for surgery, including guidelines on eating and drinking, smoking and medication.
You’ll need at least one overnight stay in hospital and it’s best to arrange for someone to drive you home after your surgery. You’ll also need someone to be at home for some or part of the day in the immediate aftermath of surgery to help with cooking, washing and everyday living so that you can get plenty of rest.
You’re likely to feel tired and sore for a few days following your surgery, but you’ll be up and around in 24 hours. Most of your discomfort can be controlled by prescribed medication.
You will be able to bathe day after surgery and your tapes will be removed after a week. You should wear a bra as directed. Your stitches will absorb so don’t need to be removed, but the swelling may take two months to disappear.
You should be able to return to work within two weeks depending on the level of activity required for your job. You will be given advice on when to begin exercises and normal activities. Your breasts will probably be sensitive to direct stimulation for two to three weeks but after that breast contact is fine once they are no longer sore: usually three to four weeks after surgery.
Your scar swill be firm and pink for about three months. After several months, your scars will begin to fade, although they will never disappear completely.
Routine mammograms should be continued after breast augmentation for women in the appropriate age group, although mammographic technicians should use a special technique to ensure you get a reliable reading.
Your initial consultation is free of charge. It is difficult to give a wholly accurate idea of the cost of your surgery until we have met and fully assessed your needs and goals. At the end you will be given an exact quote which will cover all treatment, appointments and re-admissions or revisions, should that be necessary. The price guide below should give a reasonable idea of the range of prices for your chosen treatment.
Your second consultation is more in-depth, often including a 3D imaging assessment and simulation of outcome, as well as preparation for the day itself. This costs £150 and is included in the cost of your treatment.
|Treatment||Nights Stay||Total cost without planning fee (£150)||Total cost with planning fee (£150)|
|Bilateral breast augmentation **(+ mastopexy)||One night||£5,761||£5,911|
|Bilateral breast augmentation **(+ mastopexy) GADC||GADC||£5,655||£5,805|
Absolutely not. There has never been any evidence that silicone breast implants are responsible for any systemic medical conditions.
Yes, you should be able to breast feed after having breast implants fitted. It is safe to do so and the milk ducts are not cut during the procedure.
Scars in the fold underneath the breasts tend to heal extremely well, though, as with all scars, they will be permanent. They will be positioned so that they are hidden within a bra or swimwear.
No. Implants are manmade devices and their exact lifespan is difficult to predict. Having said that, silicone is a very safe material to have inside our bodies and, as long as you are happy with the appearance and feel of your breasts, there is no fixed time period for changing them.
Yes, your implants can be removed at any time.