I am 5'5" and approximately 210 lbs. I just had a plastic surgeon tell me that I was "too fat" for breast augementation and he would not do it on me! Are there "weight restrictions" for something like this?
Is There a "Weight Limit" to Have Breast Augmentation? (photo)
Doctor Answers (19)
No absolute limit
There is no absolute number or maximum weight, as long as your overall health is ok and you can tolerate the procedure. If you are planning on losing a significant amount of weight, however, I would recommend getting closer to your goal weight prior to surgery, as it will likely give you the best chance at an excellent cosmetic result in balance with the rest of your body.
Higher Breast Augmentation risks for overweight patients
We don't have a weight limit on our patients, but we do tell all patients who are overweight that they have higher risks of complications such as infection, loss of implant and anesthetic complications.
Having clearly stated goals, and discussing these with your surgeon is very important. Heavier patients who have droop in their breasts are not going to get the perky breasts that a thin patient with no droop will get. If you are satisfied with a larger version of your own breasts, then that may be worth pursuing.
Then there is the issue of size. You would need a pretty large implant to make a difference. In general, the largest implants are about 800 cc. A number of years ago we had a breast reconstruction patient who had double mastectomies and implant reconstruction. She was overweight. She had an excellent result, but in her eyes we had failed because the 800 cc implants barely showed given her abdominal girth.
An 800 cc implant on a size 34 chest would make a huge change, but on a size 42 chest it may not change the appearance or the cup size that much. You did not mention your age, your chest size, whether you are trying to lose weight, or whether you plan children in the future. Those are other variables to discuss. I would suggest getting one more opinion and bringing your goals written down to duscuss with the surgeon.
Breast Augmentation and Ideal Weight
While there is no set weight limit for patients undergoing breast augmentation, or any elective cosmetic surgery for that matter, some plastic surgeons choose not to perform elective plastic surgery on patients with a Body Mass Index (BMI) greater than 30.
The BMI is a a measure of body fat based on height and weight:
Underweight : BMI < 18.4
Ideal Weight: BMI 18.5 to 24.9
Overweight: BMI 25 to 29.9
Obese: BMI > 30
At 5'5" tall and 210 lbs, your BMI is 35. Having a BMI in this range puts you at increased risks for complications during general anesthesia, recovery, and postoperative wound healing.
Additionally, because of your size, you may not achieve your desired breast shape or amount of projection after breast augmentation.
I recommend that you lose at least 40 lbs, in order to get down to a BMI of 30, before undergoing any cosmetic surgery. This will decrease your risk of complications and improve your overall satisfaction rates.
Jaime Perez, M.D.
Breast Augmentations Specialist in Tampa, Florida
Plastic Surgery Center of Tampa, Florida
Web reference: http://www.jaimeperezmd.com
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Breast lift with augmentation for best results
There are no absolute weight restrictions for a breast augmentation, but when considering any body contouring procedure, it is best to be at or nearly at your 'goal' weight prior to the procedure.
From your photos you would be a better candidate for a breast lift and a breast augmentation. A breast lift by itself will not give you a satisfactory result. Your nipples are in a low position. It is important, to make the result look correct to have the implant directly behind the center of the breast. When observed from the front, you must be able to see the bottom of the areolar and a bit of the non-pigmented skin of the breast below the areola. Otherwise, you will need a lift, as in your particular situation.
An augmentation by itself will not look very good. An augmentation with a breast lift will give you upper pole fullness and will lift the nipple to a higher and more youthful position.
If you mean: Can you have a breast augmentation if you are overweight? the answer is yes you can. If you are so overweight that you are not a good anesthesia risk, then you should not have any unnecesary surgery.
Weight not exactly limited for Breast Augmentation
There are many things to conside in cosmetic surgery. One thing that is perhaps the most important is that the patient be an appropriate candidate for the procedure. If you are obese to the point that you are not healthy, I would expect that you would address that issue, so your procedure would not put you at undue risk. Additonally, if you are very heavy, especially with a short waist line, implants may actually make you look heavier.
Perhaps now might be a more appropriate time to look into a program that mixes diet and exercise, and think about implants when you are farther along.
No weight limit to Breast Augmentation
Absolutely not. Weight is not a factor in the decision to pursue breast augmentation. However, excessive body fat on the abdomen and lateral chest wall may influence the projection of the breasts after augmentation and make them less noticeable when compared to a more svelte patient.
Weight and Breast Augmentation
There’s no absolute weight limit for patients contemplating breast augmentation surgery. Although patients who are over weight have high satisfaction rates with this procedure, they also have higher complication rates. Patients who are over weight have a higher incidence of infection, wound breakdown, cardiac problems, anesthesia issues and pulmonary problems. For these reasons, patients with high BMI’s should have careful pre-operative screening. In some cases, where sleep apnea may be an issue, inpatient surgery should be considered.
Patients who are over weight who have breast hypoplasia often have associated breast sag. Correction of this problem may include breast augmentation in combination with breast lift surgery.
No two patients are exactly alike, and the treatment plan should be individualized for each patient. Consultation with a board certified plastic surgeon would be appropriate to determine the best surgical option for you.
Surgical risks and complications increase significantly with increased BMI. I do not offer elective cosmetic procedures to people with a BMI over 30 in most cases. I will sometimes allow up to 35, depending on the specific case.
These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.
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