Breast Implants Needed for Asymmetry?

One of my breasts is bigger then the other. I'm a C cup and I'm a petite girl. I'm 5'5 and weigh 125lbs. After giving birth, I have noticed my boobs sag a bit and my right one is noticeably smaller then the other. I was considering TUBA breast implants, but not sure. I don't want huge boobs, just slightly bigger and more symmetrical. I'm wondering though if my boobs would still look and feel natural if I did this, and if this is the right procedure for me to use. Thanks.

Doctor Answers 10


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A TUBA is not necesarily the best way to go especially if you hae some sagging. You more than likely wil nees some sort of lift as well based upon your description.

New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

The Equalizing Factor for breast augmentation

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Dear Rightboob,

Reshaping breast with implants and possibly a lift based only your description. If this is the case then a TUBA procedure does not make sense because a lift requires incisions on the breasts. These same incisions can be used to place the implants. The best thing to do would be to schedule a consult with a board-certified plastic surgeon for a complete exam.

Good Luck!

Dr. ES

There are several ways to treat breast asymmetry

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From the description you provide, there are several things to consider. Depending on the degree of asymmetry and breast sagging, it appears you need more than a breast augmentation. Often patients will need a breast lift in one or both breasts. In addition, you may only need an implant in one breast not both. The TUBA procedure, may not be the best approach in your case due to the fact you vary well may need a lift. Your surgeon would have better control of your breast pocket for the implant and could also use the same incision for the lift with a standard approach.

Without pictures, it is difficult to know which procedure(s) would work best for your asymmetry. I recommend seeing at least two plastic surgeons for an evaluation prior to making your final decision.

Good luck!

David A. Robinson, MD
Munster Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 46 reviews

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Asymmetric Breasts

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You have several problems. The major two are the size the droop. The first thing you need to decide is about the size and fullness you want to be. If both breasts had no droop, would you still like to be larger, just fuller, or both. The easiest way to decide this is to think about your size and fullness in the bra that fits you best. If you would like to be larger or fuller, then you need an implant. If the left side is close to what you want, the decision is harder, as you should have a small implant there to help match the right, which will receive a larger implant. If the right is a reasonable size and fullness (probably not, from what you said) then you could reduce the left to match the right with no implants.

Occasionally, just placing implants can correct the droop, if it is minimal, and, if you need a large enough implant. If not, you will need a mastopexy, or lift to correct the droop. There are several methods of doing this. If you decide on implants, you have another problem, and that is how to do the procedure. I would not recommend a TUBA procedure in you, though, in expert hands, it could work. If you need a lift, you will already have an incision on the breast that can be used to insert the implant.

Robert T. Buchanan, MD
Highlands Plastic Surgeon

Do I need Breast Implants?

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Hi there-

The big question is whether you are happier with the size of the smaller breast or the larger one... Would you like to have some roundness and fulness in the upper pole (the area above your nipples)?

If you are happier with the currently larger breast, and/or having some fulness in the upper pole is important to you (this is currently consistent with what most women in the US consider the "ideal" breast shape), then you may want to consider an implant.

I the size of your currently smaller breast is pleasing to you, but you simply want a better shape with more symmetry, then reducing the larger one and lifting the smaller will likely achieve your goals.

I would visit with a Plastic Surgeon certified by The American Board of Plastic Surgery (make sure it is this board) and with a lot of breast experience. Here's a bit more info on finding the right surgeon for you:

In a previous entry, I described how common it is for patients who contact my Orlando plastic surgery center to make the mistake of thinking that:

Anyone offering a plastic surgery procedure MUST be appropriately trained and certified to perform that procedure; this is, unfortunately, not the case.

All plastic surgery training is equal, and so shopping for the best price is the best way to choose a surgeon

In that previous entry, I explained how not all people offering plastic surgery are Board Certified Plastic Surgeons, and in fact, many are not even plastic surgeons! There are now many doctors in other specialties offering to perform plastic surgery procedures without the benefit of the years of training a plastic surgeon receives, convincing their patients that a few weeks of training is sufficient for them to learn what we learn in YEARS.

I explained the potentially dangerous error of choosing based on price.

Finally, I explained how to properly choose not only a surgeon, but also the importance of choosing the facility in which the procedure will be performed and also the anesthesia provider.

For today's entry, we'll assume a healthy understanding of these issues. Having done your homework, and ascertained that the surgeons you are considering are all plastic surgeons Board Certified by The American Board of Plastic Surgery, the facilities in which they operate are all certified by the AAAASF or JCAHO, and the anesthesia providers are all well-qualified, how do you make the final decision?

Here are my recommendations:

Consider the relative quality of the surgeon's medical school educations. While it is true that most medical educations will cover the basics, there is a reason that some institutions grow international reputations and perpetually fight for the best students.

A medical school education among these "Best and Brightest" students and educators could reasonably be expected to produce (and historically has produced) America's finest doctors and surgeons. Ranking lists of medical schools take these things into consideration and are a useful resource. The most respected list, from US News and World Report, can be found here:

Find out where the surgeon completed his/her Plastic Surgery Residency. This is the critical and years long process of going from a medical student to a qualified plastic surgeon, where we learn to do plastic surgery by gradually taking on more responsibility under the watchful eyes of other, already trained and experienced surgeons. Just like medical schools, not all training programs are equal in the breadth, intensity and quality of training offered.

Generally speaking, those programs associated with the best medical schools also provide the best training, as they will be able to attract and retain the best, most experienced and reputable professors of plastic surgery- and the quality of our training will depend on the quality of those training us. For example, I completed my own Plastic Surgery training at Washington University in St. Louis, one of the top 5 medical schools in the United States- and it also happens to be the birthplace of American Plastic Surgery.

It bears repeating that you should be absolutely sure that the surgeon you are considering is Board Certified by The American Board of Plastic Surgery. This is easily done at the Board's site:

Know that surgeons who claim to be "Board Eligible" in plastic surgery are NOT board certified. This may be because they simply have not taken the examinations- but this is doubtfully the true explanation, as The American Board of Plastic Surgery specifically prohibits claiming ANY status with The Board until and unless you have passed all examinations. Much more likely is that they were unable to pass the examinations (or simply never took them), but realize they may lose patients if they don't find a way to fool them into thinking they have status with The Board. Are you starting so understand that not all doctors have integrity?

Spend some time thinking about the interactions you have had with the surgeon and his/her staff. You should realize that having a plastic surgery procedure is NOT a singular interaction, like buying a new handbag, in which once the bag is purchased (or the surgery completed) the interaction can be considered to be complete. Rather, you are choosing to enter into a very important relationship with your surgeon, the critical portions of which should be expected to last at least a few months beyond the date of your surgery, as you recover and heal. This very important relationship should therefore be approached with the same care you would give any other... think about whether you think the surgeon will be responsive to your needs and concerns, whether your personalities will allow healthy interaction, the approachability of his/her staff, etc...

Remember- you don't only want to have achieved a great outcome when all is said and done... you want to have had an uplifting and positive experience you can look back on and smile! You can have this in the best practices.

Finally, never forget that what you are really looking for is the very best OUTCOME you can achieve. Sometimes when I'm asked by friends and family how to sort through all the claims some surgeons make of being the best choice because they (the surgeon in question) were voted "the best" by some magazine, or because the surgeon simply says they are "the best", I am reminded of the first Clinton presidential campaign, in which the slogan "It's the economy, stupid" helped Mr. Clinton win the White House. Once you've done the homework outlined above, it's all about the OUTCOME...

Ask to see photos of the surgeon's previous work- and ask yourself if you would be pleased if you looked like the photos they show you. Think about how many good photos they show you. Do most of the outcomes just look funny, with only a few that you think are attractive and natural, or are all of their results pleasing and attractive, even if every one may not be what you specifically want? If the surgeon can't show you at least a few outcomes you find attractive and pleasing, you should look elsewhere.

Be sure to ask directly whether the photos you are being shown are the surgeon's own work (believe it or not, some actually do try to attract patients by showing them the work of others!)

I also always recommend communicating with a few of the surgeon's prior patients who have had the same procedure they are recommending for you. You can ask the surgeon's staff for a list of patients who may have agreed to be called, or find testimonials online at one of the many plastic surgery websites now available. My favorite, because it is objective, free (surgeons cannot pay to be listed higher, so more credibility exists), and allows you to get a feel for the surgeon's manner and personality, is RealSelf:

I know it seems like a huge amount of work, but after you've read this (as well as my prior post) a few times, you'll have a great understanding of the best way to proceed, and it will feel very comfortable and natural to you. Use the resources I've outlined, and use your gut- there are many great surgeons out there- with these guidelines you should be able to attain the outcome and experience you desire.

Breast Asymmetry

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There is no simple answer. Is this your last child? It is more realistic to expect that changes will occur with your existing breasts and you should take this into account with placement of any implants. As stated by my colleagues, although not requested by you, reducing the larger breast and lifting both will produce a more reliable long term result rather than compensating for asymmetric breast tissue with implants..

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 86 reviews

Breast implants needed for asymmetry?

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Without photos, it's very hard to determine if you need a small reduction with breast lift or just a lift, or a lift with breast implants. Go see 3 boarded [plastic surgeon in your area. Regards.

Breast asymmetry

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The principle is to try to do similar procedures to paired structures. For example, implants on both sides, lifts to both sides rather than lift on one side and implant on another. This might require an asymmetric lift and/or an asymmetric reduction followed by implants. Your situation, like all patients', needs to be customized. In general, it is better to try to use the same size and style of implants.

Robin T.W. Yuan, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon

Treating breast asymmetry

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The description you give indicates that both of your breasts need a lift. The key is whether the smaller one is big enough for you. If so, you don't need implants and the larger one just needs a little reduction. If the smaller one needs to be bigger, you either need an implant on that side plus the lift or implants on both sides. Remember that implants don't "lift" you, they just make you bigger and fuller.

Breast Augmentation VS Breast Lift for Asymmetry

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If you are happy with your current Breast size and wish the breasts to be more symmetric then all you need id a Breast Lift with a small reduction on the left.

If you do want to be larger on BOTH sides, then you will need a Breast Augmentation (and if needed a Breast Lift) with use of SIZERS during surgery to see how much larger an implant would need to be placed on the Right side.

I would NOT recommend you have a TUBA because you may well still need a Breast Lift (which does require a scar on the breast itself) AND the same scare can be used for placing the sizers.

Dr. P. Aldea

Peter A. Aldea, MD
Memphis Plastic Surgeon

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.