The 101 to Getting Breast Implants
Wednesday, June 24th, 2020, 6:00:00 PM
Ask Dr Terence Goh about:
If you missed the webinar hosted by Dr Terence Goh on 24 Jun 2020, you can check out the highlights here:
Some questions you can ask are:
- What is the best age to get a breast augmentation?
- How will my breasts feel and look after breast augmentation surgery?
Dr Terence Goh is currently the president of the Singapore Association of Plastic Surgeons, and the vice-chairman to the Chapter of Plastic Surgeons, Academy of Medicine, Singapore. He practices reconstructive microsurgery, focusing on breast reconstruction, complex head and neck reconstruction, lower limb salvage, and lymphatic reconstructive surgery. He completed his advanced surgical training in plastic surgery and continues to serve as a visiting consultant at Singapore General Hospital. Dr Goh has also completed several observerships with renowned plastic surgeons in the United States, Europe, Australia, and Asia.
The advice is to be very well informed. It’s to find out as much as you can so that you have an idea. There’s so much information available and it’s all readily available for you to read up. You can look in Human, et cetera. Basically, you have to know what your options are. Besides breast implants, there’s also fat grafting. At least you can make that decision with all these considerations and not hastily so that you will not regret your decisions later.
There are checks that you need to do to make sure that you’re fit enough for the surgery. That depends on your age. If you’re a young and fit individual, and you don’t smoke, basically we call it ASA1 which means you’re perfectly cleared for anaesthesia. Then you don’t really need to do anything, you don’t even need a blood test. If you’re above a certain age, then you may need to do some blood tests to make sure that you’re safe for anaesthesia.
I think what you mean is the pectoralis muscle. Yes, so after the implant is placed in, even if you do a dual-plane where you cut some of the pectoralis fibres, the muscle is still functioning. There will be no change in the function of the muscle. You’re just removing or cutting just a short segment of that muscle. But what is also true is that because the implant is placed underneath the muscle, so sometimes when you move that muscle, there could be some animation effects. It means that the implant will actually shift a bit.
In fat grafting, there are two sets of incisions. One is for liposuction, so that would be done wherever we need to harvest the fat. Those are normally hidden within, for example, the underwear line or within the belly button. So it’s usually sited somewhere inconspicuous. Those incisions are slightly bigger, it could be up to 5mm or up to 1cm. For the breast, we basically put numerous incisions to inject the fat. Typically, they’re put around the areolar. So where the nipple skin meets the normal breast skin.
The cost of the surgery would involve several factors. The first is the surgeon fees. Then the anaesthesia fees, and then the facility choice that you pick -- whether you need to stay overnight. Most of the time, you do not need to stay overnight for breast implants. It’s a day surgery procedure. Once it’s done and you recover from the anaesthesia, you can go home. Then, of course, the final factor is the choice of implants. What brand of implant you pick and different implants would have different prices. So the total cost could be somewhere in the $10,000 to $15,000 range.
Capsular contracture is a very specific condition whereby when you have an implant, your body creates a capsule around it because it is a foreign object. Every foreign object in your body will have a capsule around it. And these capsules, over time, can have problems. Not that it will, but it can. One of the problems you may have is that the capsule will start to shrink and because of that the implant will start to feel a bit harder, it may become misshapen. And then the patients may start to feel pain. So they can feel the implant hardening, they can change shape, they can shift a bit.
That’s a very valid question because you could have made a decision to have the implants in before you had kids. Certainly, you could also have it after, but it is a concern for patients who are planning to have children. The truth is that it is safe to breastfeed after you’ve had implants because all that silicone and gel is actually kept within the shell so there’s no worry that this silicone will leak into the breast milk. So it is safe to breastfeed. The other question is will there be any effect on breast milk production. So again, the answer is no.
Different manufacturers would have different suggested numbers. But it would be somewhere between 15-20 years. Of course, if you have complications earlier such as ruptures or capsular contracture, then you may need to have it removed earlier.
Generally, you just need to make sure that you’re not taking foods that you’re allergic to. But there’s no strict diet that you need to comply with.
There’s quite a long list of things you can do. The first these things is, essentially, you need to be compliant with the instructions that are given by the variant doctors. Usually, for example in my practice, we’ll put on a bra for you. This is different from the underwire bras that you’d probably have, it is a surgical bra to give the support. And then the patients are given painkillers as well as antibiotics. The incisions are dressed, so they don’t need to check the incisions until we see them again.