Tuberous Breast Correction with Implants/ Implants Removed 5 Years Later - La Mesa, CA
I began to realize that something was "abnormal"...
I did some research and discovered that I had a mild to moderate case of Tuberous Breast Deformation. The word "deformed" is a difficult term to accept, but it was also important for me to understand that this was a semi-common case and the important thing was that it was not cancerous or life/ health threatening.
After searching the web, I did find similar stories and photos that compared to my personal case. Although it was comforting to realize I was not alone in my "deformation" I knew the current shape of my breasts would continue to bother me and affect my self-confidence.
I began to look up the best doctors with the most experience correcting tuberous breasts. Dr. Tom Pousti's name came up right away. Feeling lucky that I was based in Orange County, close enough to drive down for a consultation, where many fly across the country to see him, I booked an appointment right away.
Dr. Pousti, kind and understanding, told me he could definitely perform tuberous breast correction on me as he had done it time and time before. He explained that the best and most common procedure for fixing tuberous breasts was to expand the constricted breast base with an implant. I had very little breast tissue at the time, and puffy areolas, which usually accompanies tuberous breasts. Although having small breasts wasn't what bothered me, and it was really just the shape of the breasts that I couldn't accept, I scheduled my surgery with the excitement of a future with a normal breast shape.
I remember the procedure happening quickly, waking up all wrapped up, and that surgical bra… I remember the healing process on the couch at my moms house. Lots of movies and soup. I remember trying on clothes for the first time and feeling "proportional", curvy, womanly, and sexy. My aureolas were flat and my breast were ROUND and sizable.
Anxious to heal, accept my new body and put the "ugly" past behind me, I soon after moved to San Francisco to attend college. It was great to have a new beginning, with my new body, meeting new people. I felt confident and happy that I had the procedure done.
I ended up living in San Francisco for the following 5 years. The Bay Area, with it's colder than SoCal climate, demands you wear more clothing, and keep semi- covered up. I adapted to this dress code, accepted my breast implants as a part of my body, and almost forgot the surgery itself had happened. Unfortunately I didn't realize that the implants made me feel less comfortable in performing upper body activity and unconsciously became less physically active. Most likely a combination of this and the college diet of pizza and beer, I gained some weight. Busy with school over these four years, I didn't think to much about it.
As college came to an end, and as nature had it I was growing up, I picked up eating healthy and taking care of my body as a new hobby. I began to go to gym and eat clean whole foods and lost all the excess weight I had gained.. except the weight in my breasts of course. Feeling great and getting tons of attention from.. everyone.. I took an after graduation vacation to Hawaii. Being on the beach and being warm after all those cold years in San Francisco felt amazing. Looking and feeling awesome in a bikini was great too. A week of this was simply not enough and so I proceeded to stay for the following 3 months. I became even more active in my time in Hawaii, leaning to surf, swimming, running and picking up yoga. I was now more in tune and touch with my body than I had ever been and was really learning to "love myself" completely.
This was the most my breasts had been "out" since I had the procedure done, as the entire time I lived in SF they were mostly covered by clothing. Now I lived in a bikini top and my healed large breasts were out for the world to see, and looking quite natural as they had just enough years to settle in place.
Coincidentally, this is just the time when my implants started to bother me. Not because anything seemed "wrong" or painful, but just because I had become such a hippie (haha), and was so aware of myself physically now, I could literally feel the implants inside my body. I could feel the separation between the foreign objects and my natural self, and it just felt like something wasn't "right".
I returned to the mainland, and chose to relocate back to Orange County rather than San Francisco, as I realized how much I loved the ocean and being in warm weather. Dr. Pousti was just a short drives distance from me again and I decided to schedule a consult to express the notions I had developed in my present maturity.
Just as sweet as before, with 5 added years of experience, Tom Pousti made me feel right at home once again. Happy to see me and treating me like a returning family member, he and his staff were very supportive in my feelings and said I was not the first of my kind in seeking implant removal.
I was concerned about the outcome as what did infact make my case rather "special" was my history of tuberous breasts, and the tuberous breast correction being done in conjunction with implants. What would my result look like after implant removal? There were not many "before and after" cases of this exact scenario on the web for me to confide in.
Willing to take the chance with my trustworthy friends at Pousti Plastic Surgery, I scheduled my implant removal surgery for October 31, 2013. I was looking very forward to being my "natural" self again. Keeping positive and optimistic, I had faith that I would heal beautifully, and my body would reward me for removing the unfamiliar matter.
And honestly… what followed was exactly that. I am 5 weeks post-surgery now and feel so amazing I could cry happy tears. The healing process of implant removal is SO QUICK physically, emotionally and mentally, it's amazing. I still have the steri-strips on the incisions around my areolas, but feel just about completely healed. I cannot wait to be able to go swimming and SURF again in a few short weeks! I am so happy and comfortable with my new/ old self (haha)!
Some details about my quick removal journey-
I was scared, definitely. I was afraid my breasts would look saggy and deflated post implant removal. How flat would I actually be? What would the people I see on a daily basis think? Would they notice? Having implants was never information I publicly shared. My personality type isn't one who cares for attention focused on my physical appearance, let alone breasts- large or lack there of. I was afraid my coworkers would be like, "Woah, where are your boobs? You had implants?" Nevertheless, I knew I was doing this for me, and I would be happy with the outcome either way, and so quieted my worries of what others might think. Still, I didn't want anyone to know what I was having done. I preferred it to be a private matter kept between myself, some family members, and the staff at Dr. Pousti's office.
On my surgery day, as one of the nurses in the surgery center set me up for my IV.. I began to cry. Suddenly a slew of emotions overcame me and I just couldn't hold them in. I felt like I was mourning a loss in a way, of a body part that I had lived with for 5 years. It was really strange but I still KNEW i was doing the right thing for me. What made it even more emotional was how insanely sweet and caring Dr. Pousti's team at the surgery center was. I seriously get teary eyed reminiscing about it. Literally every single one of his nurses separately came in to my surgery-prep room to hold my hand, assure me I was safe, my outcome would be amazing, and that they are all here to take care of me and I wasn't alone. Making changes to your BODY is such an emotionally heavy thing. I am forever grateful to Tom Pousti's team for their kindness and care in getting me through my procedure.
In healing, and in regards to all my worries of what others would think, I am pleasantly surprised that no one has seemed to notice! I've caught a few wandering eyes, but no cases of shock or comments that have made me uncomfortable! I'll share some of my coping secrets with you now, that I think have played a role in my smooth transition to real self. :)
First, I told my workplace that I was going to visit a family member out of town and so excused myself a week off for private healing time. This gave me enough time to have the drains removed before returning to work.
With implant removal, after the drains are removed, you are instructed to wear a compression sports bra for the following weeks to help prevent any potential fluid build up. I went out to Kohl's and bought a couple sports bras with removable padding. I collected all the removable pads from old bras of mine and my sisters. I stacked at least 4 pads in each pocked of my new sports bra. I was going from a 36D to a 36A, for sure. This helped the psychological process of accepting my new body image tremendously. With that amount of padding I looked about the same size as I was pre-removal. I also went out and bought some printed/ looser tops, without changing my style completely. This way I wouldn't feel like my clothes were hugging my new contour, making it obvious that something about me was different.
These adjustments really helped me feel more comfortable about returning to work and life without the fear of unwelcome comments.
It's amazing as I've healed, and felt more and more comfortable in my new body, I have slowly removed the padding from the sports bras and felt confident going out into the world without any "training wheels".
I am so thankful to Dr. Pousti and his amazing staff for making this experience as smooth, comforting and supportive as possible. I would recommend Dr. Pousti to any one interested in having a procedure done. The travel will be well worth it. The whole team at Pousti Plastic Surgery is truly special.
Amazing. Kind, warm, understanding.