Am I Choosing the Right Size for my Breast Implant?

Hi, I have a sergerry in one week and I don't know if I choose the right size for my self. Please help me, I like to be very natural. I am 36 and I have one chield . I am 5'3 and about 126 and my breast width 12. I chose silene moderate profile 330 fill to 360. .

Doctor Answers 7

Choosing the right size breast implants--Here's how!

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Choosing breast implant size can be done in a number of ways; using as many of them as possible only increases the information that I utilize to most accurately achieve the “look” each patient desires.

Of course, patients often have input from friends who have undergone this operation, have a "great result," and have ____cc implants. "Get those!" she tells you. But you probably don’t know what proportion of her present size is her breast, and how much is implant. Unless your breasts exactly match your friend's pre-operative breast size (doubtful), you will need different implants added to your own tissue to get similar results. The problem is determining what size is best for you, which can be difficult when you have other friends who advise to “not go too large” or you will “look fat,” be top-heavy, or have a "porn-star look." Compared to whom? Or is she just a bit jealous? I have seen entertainers, models, and everyday women with breasts of all sizes and shapes--some of whom ask me to give them something different: bigger, smaller, higher, or with an improved appearance. What is best for one is definitely not best for all.

Breast augmentation is a personal choice, and while a friend’s input can be helpful, you should choose a size that makes you feel good about yourself. For MOST women, the size you choose is not only possible, but perfect for you! Remember, you should never have surgery to please someone else, or to try to conform to someone else's opinion.

Plastic surgeons who perform lots of breast enlargements have extensive experience in helping our patients choose implant sizes that are compatible with individual anatomy. Every one of us does this slightly differently, and some surgeons even decide for their patient. But what about the patient's wishes? Every patient has a "perfect size" in her mind's eye, and all we need to do is figure out what that size is, and whether or not it will match appropriately with the patient's chest and breast base dimensions, skin and muscle capacity, position of the nipple-areola complex, as well as a host of individual anatomic factors. I start with breast examination, careful measurements (everyone is asymmetrical), and ask you what your goals are. Based on these factors, I can determine if your requests can be achieved. For most patients, the answer is YES! If not, I will tell you, and we try to figure out what CAN work, and how to best get CLOSE to your ideals.

One of the best techniques for choosing the size of breast implants is for the patient to bring photographs of models with the desired final breast size to their consultation, or at the time of surgery. The proper size implants to most closely achieve this appearance are then chosen in the operating room. (Since we have all sizes and profiles of saline and silicone gel breast implants available in our accredited surgical center, we do not have to “order in advance” and can make changes based on your choice, or on the basis of your exact chest wall, muscle, and breast anatomy right up to and during surgery). Photographic examples have proven to be much more accurate than the patient requesting a letter cup size, or trying to find a similar person who has had breast implants and whose anatomy and/or results approximate your goals. Don't try to match your height, weight, or preoperative breast appearance to the photos, and don't use a stated implant size as a guideline for choosing your implant size—just find an “AFTER” photo you like.

Also, if your breast sizes don’t match (most women have some degree of asymmetry), we can choose different implant sizes and/or profiles to achieve as much symmetry as possible. In more severe cases, we can recommend appropriate procedures (such as breast reduction, breast lift, or other surgical options) to optimize size, shape, and position between mismatched breasts.

Trying on implants in a brassiere or stretchy top is another excellent way to provide some idea of desired final breast size and the implant volume needed to achieve that size; however, it is essential not to become overly attached to a specific bra cup size (B, C, D, etc.) or implant volume (400cc, etc.), since the implant size you like in a bra or top will always look smaller when it is under your own breast tissues and chest muscle. Typically, a woman who chooses a specific cc volume implant that she feels looks good in her bra will be disappointed (too small) after surgery if that exact size is used in her body. A good general rule of thumb is to add 50 to 100cc to the implant volume you feel looks good if you choose to size in a brassiere. In other words, if you like how a 400cc implant looks in a bra, it will take a 450-500cc implant to look about the same size in your body.

Since what this surgery accomplishes is increased volume, your own pre-surgery breast shape will determine your final breast shape after implants increase your breast size. Size will also determine just how much breast mass extends to the side of the chest (armpit area), or into the cleavage region, since proper implant positioning is determined by the position of your nipple areola complex.

For instance, a woman with widely spaced nipples will need to have her breast implants positioned more laterally (towards the armpit area), since the implant pocket and final breast mound must be properly centered beneath the nipple areola complex. If the implants were simply placed close together in the center to give a full cleavage look, each nipple areola complex would then be positioned too far to the side, giving a "wall-eyed" appearance.

Similarly, a woman who has more medial nipple position would have a "cross-eyed" appearance if she requested lateral fullness and her implants were placed more to the side of the chest without taking into account the nipple position atop the new breast mound.

Clearly, not only size, but also the exact size and position of your breast implants, is critical to your final result. Your own anatomy determines shape (unless you also need a breast lift, where incisions are made to lift or otherwise shape your breast skin, or reposition too-low nipple and areola complexes).

Most breast implant patients will notice that implant position tends to drop as time goes by after surgery. If you look “perfect” in the first few days after surgery, I believe that even wearing a surgical bra 24/7 will not prevent implant position from dropping to an unattractive “too-low” appearance in a majority of patients after several months. (This also makes the scar position too high above the crease.) I take this into account surgically, placing the implant position slightly higher than I anticipate the desired final position to be. I will have you use an elastic bandeau at night, and go braless during the day (when upright), to allow the implants to settle, drop, and soften as time goes by. The elastic bandeau also helps me adjust any differences between breasts, since each side will swell, bruise, scar, and heal slightly differently, and at their own individual rate! I firmly believe that looking a bit “high and tight” right after surgery ensures a better final result, and a lower likelihood of re-operation to adjust position. In those few patients that do not drop into “perfect” position, it is a much more simple (and successful) re-operation to open the pocket slightly lower than to try to raise the crease and keep it “high enough.”

I also make the surgical pockets larger than your chosen implants, and will have you do implant movement exercises, often inaccurately called implant massage, to keep the pockets open and larger than the implants so that the final breasts are soft, natural, and drop slightly to the side when you recline (which is what naturally larger breasts do), rather than remaining hard and immobile on your chest.

Most women seeking breast implants at Minneapolis Plastic Surgery emphasize that they do not wish to be "too large" after augmentation. There is a natural hesitancy to make a change that is so dramatic that "everyone will know" or that might make you more self-conscious at the health club or swimming pool. Most patients have these concerns, and many verbalize this. However, 6 to 12 months after surgery, when these concerns evaporate, too many patients admit they wish they had chosen larger implants. Some undergo another operation to place new, larger implants. Fortunately, the surgical pocket for the implant is already healed, and recovery is quicker when size change is requested.

Although the choice of size is entirely up to each individual patient, subject to anatomic limitations, choosing just slightly larger than what you consider to be optimal preoperatively will help you avoid reoperation for size change, including the cost of new implants, operating room, and anesthesia.

Based on your information, I believe you are in the proper range, but your goals and anatomy also have a role here, as described above. You should also, in my opinion, consider silicone gel implants for no chance of leakage and deflation requiring re-operation, a softer, more natural feel, and what a majority of plastic surgeons AND patients believe to be a superior choice. Of course, the final decision is up to you and your chosen surgeon. Best wishes! Dr. Tholen

Implants will not correct drooping

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If you are size 32 or 34 bra then each 100 cc of implant will correspond to 1 cup size change.  If you are size 36 or 38 bra then each 200 cc of implant will correspond to 1 cup size change.  I imagine you fall into one of these categories because you are thin.  From this information, you can calculate the volume required.  Another aspect to consider is that your breasts are hanging.  You said you had 1 child and the drooping of the breasts is just as important as cup size.  Patients frequently need a lift to correct drooping especially after pregnancies.  Saline does not look or feel as natural as silicone gel.  I recommend silicone gel implants placed retro-pectoral combined with Mini Ultimate Breast Lift.

Best Wishes,

Gary Horndeski, M.D.

Implant Size

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 Unfortunately, an online forum is not the avenue to take when trying to determine size.  This requires a face to face interaction with the plastic surgeon via a consultation.  Once sizes are discussed and determined then you must rely on the experience and judgement of your PS.

Dr. ES

Choosing a breast implant size

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Like a shoe or dress size, you don't really get to choose a size, the size chooses you based on your measurements. In breast augmentation you do get to choose the forward profile of the implant as your tissues will accommodate this within what is available in profiles if the diameter of the implant matches the inner width of your breast. In saline-filled implants this ranges from low (Allergan), medium (Mentor or Allergan), Moderate Plus (Mentor), or high (Allergan). The moderate profile you have chosen should increase your apparent breast size by about 1 1/2 cups relative to your chest measurement (which stays the same). The 300 cc moderate profile might fit a 12 cm width breast a bit better but the 330 will work too. Filling it to its maximum of 10% above the rated fill is fine. 

Scott L. Replogle, MD
Boulder Plastic Surgeon

Implant selection

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Without an exam, it is difficult to suggest waht implant would be best for you.  Your anatomy wil help in selecting the appropriate implant. Good luck.

Best Breast Implants For Me?

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Thank you for the question.

As you can imagine, despite your good description of body type and goals, it is not possible to give you precise  advice online.
The best online advice I can give to ladies who are considering breast augmentation surgery is:

1. Concentrate on choosing your plastic surgeon carefully.  Concentrate on appropriate training, certification, and the ability of the plastic surgeon to achieve the results you're looking for. Ask to see lots of examples of his/her work.

2. Have a full discussion and communication regarding your desired goals  with your plastic surgeon. This communication will be critical in determining  breast implant size/type/profile will most likely help achieve your goals. 
In my practice, the use of photographs of “goal” pictures (and breasts that are too big or too small) is very helpful. I have found that the use of words such as “natural”  or “C cup” etc means different things to different people and therefore prove unhelpful.
 Also, as you know, cup size varies depending on who makes the bra; therefore, discussing desired cup  size may also be inaccurate.

3.  Once you feel you have communicated your goals clearly,  allow your plastic surgeon to use his/her years of experience/judgment to choose the breast implant size/profile that will best meet your goals.  Again, in my practice, this decision is usually made during surgery.

I hope this helps.

Choosing the right breast size

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Choosing the right breast size for you deserves your input and you should give it time and thought so the 'look' after breast augmentation is what your goal is. Choosing a breast implant requires experience and judgement (and a medical license). Focus on what you want to look like, and find a board certified plastic surgeon with the experience to get you there safely.

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.