From Implants to Breast Lift with Implant Extraction and New Implants to Revision...- Denver, CO

Hello- I had silicone gel implants placed over...

Hello-
I had silicone gel implants placed over the muscle 30 years ago. BEST money I ever spent and best decision I ever made! My implants were fabulous, no words to describe what they meant to my self-esteem but briefly, they made me feel feminine and that I could "compete" in every aspect of my life, from standing up for myself to not tolerating abusive relationships to assertiveness in the workplace and ultimately, following my dreams. Those ladies with "real" breasts don't seem to be able to relate; they've never been there.

Last year I noticed a big, hard lump floating in my chest. Imaging and exams revealed implant rupture. It was unsightly and painful. So I began consulting plastic surgeons to see what I could do. All recommended mastopexy (lift) and explantation with clean-up of the scar tissue that had built up around the implants. All but one wanted to do it as staged procedure, but I didn't want to undergo 3 operations, 3 anesthesias, 3 recoveries, and no WAY could I afford the cost of 3 separate procedures. I found a PS I really like who said no reason she couldn't do it as one (long) procedure. I researched her very carefully. She's a reconstructive specialist and that's who I wanted for my procedure, knowing I would benefit from her knowledge and experience, and I liked that she's a female, feeling she would better relate to how I felt and what I was hoping to accomplish. My first surgeon was a female, too.

Now the money! I'm low-income so didn't have the cash for the procedure. I refinanced my house and took out enough cash to have the procedure, $10K+. I scheduled my surgery and was SO EXCITED to have what I thought would be a "lift" since I really needed one after a long, painful year. I thought I would come out of surgery with new boobs, bigger and better boobs. I should have researched better!

In May 2012 I underwent full anchor lift and my old 225 cc over the muscle implants removed and replaced with 475 cc silicones under the muscle. Upon awakening from anesthesia, I was terrified-I looked FLAT!! My hubby and family assured me everything was fine, there was swelling, etc. and to be patient. As soon as I could, I went online and found forums like Real Self and they have helped me alot, tho' frankly seeing other ladies' results made me very sad--they look SO much better than I. I'm 49 years old, 200 pounds, and wasn't expecting to come out looking young and thin. But I was absolutely NOT prepared for my results.

I waited and watched, waiting for dropping and fluffing, waiting for some shape to appear, and waiting for a result I could live with. Since I've never seen a real breast before, I suppose I had no idea what one looked like. I thought all breasts were supposed to be round. Well, with my surgery I went from grapefruits to hamburger buns in size, shape, and projection. Preop I was a DD cup. Now, 4-1/2 months postop, I'm barely a B cup. I still don't know what happened. My surgeon is very nice but honestly, just doesn't seem to understand why I feel so badly. I finally figured out by looking online that I look EXACTLY like a mastectomy/reconstruction patient, not someone who had a lift and BA. I'm FLAT as a pancake, and wide. Under clothing I look "normal" and even have some cleavage, with a bra squishing everything together. Naked, I suppose it's a reasonable result; I'm fairly symmetric, and I've healed well. However, I've been SO SAD ever since my surgery and cry nearly every day. I'm NOT a depressed or sad person, and never have been. This has been such a hit to my self-esteem it takes me right back to how I felt in high school--deformed, (I had a pigeon breast,) unfeminine, and couldn't participate in "normal" girl stuff. I've been stressed, sad, and feeling like I can't really function at 100% as a female. On top of that, I feel guilty for feeling how I do. After all, the mission was accomplished. And I healed well, with only a few spit stitches, so I should be grateful. And I am grateful, but so, so sad.

I've met with my PS and now we're talking about 800 cc HP OVER the muscle this time. She's reluctant, I can tell. She isn't guaranteeing she can get 800 into me. My surgery is scheduled for October 30, 2012. No matter the result, I will have to live with it becauase this will drain literally every cent I have. Instead of going into surgery expectant and happy, anticipating good results, I'm going into surgery scared, anxious and very much afraid I'll look even worse afterward. This isn't how I thought it would go. I didn't ask enough questions prior to my May procedure and worry that I'm not asking enough questions now. But I don't know WHAT to ask. For my original surgery in 1984, there werent' the choices available that there are now. You went in and the surgeon made the decisions, and that's what you got. Also, my implants lasted me a good 30 years. Now I'm wondering if the new implants and placement is any better, and can I expect a lasting (good) result like I did with my originals? Also of note, I've had a very tough time finding women similar to me in age and weight, and also experience. I hope maybe my experience can help someone else.

Update. One week ago I had implant revision, 800...

Update. One week ago I had implant revision, 800 cc HP gel unders, same PS. I knew immediately things were "right" again. They are not huge (they're proportionate to my large frame and size.) They are not up under my collarbone, tho' still a tad high (she opened up the pockets more.) I love the shape (not square like last time) and they aren't hard like last time. Overall, I'm thrilled. I feel like myself again.

I'm almost 6 weeks postop and happy as can be with...

I'm almost 6 weeks postop and happy as can be with my new implants. I'm curious to see if losing a significant amount of weight changes the look and/or position of my 800 cc implants. Time and lots of hard work will tell!.
Name not provided

This rating reflects how I feel. I believe my disappointing resuls the first time around (anchor lift and BA with smaller implants) are because I'm not an ideal candidate for cosmetic procedures--I'm obese. I chose this provider based on LOTS of research. Breast reconstruction is her specialty.

5 out of 5 stars Overall rating
5 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
5 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
5 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
5 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
5 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
5 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
5 out of 5 stars Payment process
5 out of 5 stars Wait tmes
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Comments (3)

How are things going? I'd love to hear an update! Hopefully everything has worked out beautifully!!!
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Hi Karen-Things are going beautifully. Obviously, not like before because of the scarring but I'm very happy with my results with 800cc HP silicones. VERY happy!
  • Reply

I'm sorry for this long ordeal. Thank you for starting your story on RealSelf and please let us know how this all goes.

  • Reply