6 Questions to Ask Your Surgeon before Breast Augmentation

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Once a woman has made the decision to enhance her breasts, a new set of questions arises. Your consultation is the best opportunity for you to interact with your surgeon, get a feel for his or her expertise and bedside manner, and ask all those questions that inevitably come up while sorting through the many myths and misconceptions surrounding breast augmentation.

Not surprisingly, the day of your consultation is typically filled with excitement and some nerves. To help avoid the frustration of forgetting what to ask, here’s a list of six important questions to discuss with your surgeon before breast augmentation.

1. Am I a Candidate? 

Factors such as your general physical and mental health and age provide your surgeon with crucial information about your candidacy for the procedure. A good candidate for breast augmentation has realistic goals about the outcome of her procedure, and is looking for an enhanced breast size and shape.

2. Saline or Silicone?

Choosing between saline and silicone is another important step in the decision making process during breast augmentation. While silicone implants currently far outpace saline in popularity, that doesn’t mean that they’re right for every woman. For example, the FDA has not approved silicone implants for cosmetic use in women under 22 years of age, and many surgeons only offer saline as an option for women in this age range. However, there are many advantages to silicone implants as well, particularly their natural look and feel. Your surgeon can offer a recommendation about which type of implant he or she feels is most likely to help you meet your cosmetic goals.

3. Which Size Is Best for Me?

Women should work with their plastic surgeons to determine which size implants will best suit their personal tastes. Through the use of cutting edge technology like Vectra 3D imaging, an advanced system that removes the guesswork from selecting a size, your surgeon can help you make a more informed decision. The Vectra system takes a 3D image of the patient's body and projects it on a computer screen, allowing the surgeon and patient to try out different virtual implant sizes and select the one that looks best on the patient's actual frame.

4. Should I Include a Breast Lift?

While not all patients will require or benefit from a breast lift, asking whether a lift should be included is still an important question. Many women mistakenly assume breast implants alone will create a more lifted look or will change the placement of their breasts to a higher position, but implants only add volume. Check with your plastic surgeon to see if the look you hope for is achievable with implants alone or if you should combine breast implants with a lift for better results.

5. Are You Board Certified?

While this question is number five on our list, it should be first in patients' books when selecting a breast augmentation surgeon in the first place. Board certification from the American Board of Plastic Surgery is the most reliable way to identify a surgeon with the best possible credentials, training, and experience.

6. Are You a Breast Specialist?

When considering breast implants, patients should seek out not only a plastic surgeon who is board certified, but should also ask about experience with breast augmentations specifically. Inquiring about the number of breast augmentations performed yearly and evaluating many real patient before and after photos will give you more insight into a specific doctor's experience and skill with breast augmentation, so you know you’re in good hands from consultation through recovery.  
Article by
Raleigh-Durham Plastic Surgeon