How should I prepare for being home post-op BA? And how long should I make these accommodations?

I want to make sure that I can reach for things around the house (i.e.: cupboards, closets, frig, etc.) and that these every day tasks won't interfere with my healing process post-operatively. I'm starting to make the common sense adjustments, like bring the stored cat food down from the top shelf. Store coffee grounds in a lighter container, etc. what am I missing that I havent thoughts about?

Doctor Answers 18

Post-op Preparation for Breast Augmentation?

For starters you should follow the recommendations of your surgeon. We encourage early post-operative mobility which includes gentle stretching of your chest muscles starting in the recovery room. This helps prevent the chest muscles from spasming and will make your recovery easier and quicker. Patients are told that they can use their arms including raising above their head to reach something in a cupboard, but to move slowly and avoid lifting heavier objects. Common sense restrictions apply, such as if something feels uncomfortable then you should back off. Basic everyday activities are fine, but jumping jacks or painting your kitchen ceiling should be avoided. 

Kirkland Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 52 reviews

You’re off to a good start in planning for your breast augmentation recovery.

You’re right to consider bringing the things you’ll need down from cabinets or shelves so you won’t have to reach while you heal. Your plastic surgeon should provide you with a comprehensive guide that helps you navigate your recovery, but in general it’s also important to make sure you’re giving your body the nutrients it needs to heal. Stock up on healthy, ready-to-go meals ahead of time, and prepare a comfortable space in your home where you can relax with your favorite TV shows, movies and magazines. Best of luck to you.

David L. Kaufman, MD
Folsom Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 60 reviews

Ideas for preparation for the little things post-op are best gotten from other patients!

I hate to seem like I'm punting on this one, but I have to be honest and tell you that like most plastic surgeons, and especially the males, while we have put in thousands of implants, we haven't had them put into our own bodies.  Thus, while we can advise you on the proper care and medical procedures for best healing - most surgeons have specific written postoperative instructions that they provide you with, and which of course you will want to follow closely - a lot of the practical day-to-day issues that you are discussing are out of our "field of view" so to speak.  Things like moving hard-to-reach items and heavy things ahead of time are all excellent ideas, but honestly, I probably would have never thought about half of that stuff!  It's not that I'm dumb; I guess sometimes you just don't know what you don't know!  I think you need to talk with a bunch of ladies who have had the operation themselves and get the nitty gritty on ideas for what made their lives easier - or what they could have done to make their lives easier - during their recovery.  That's where the real money is on this issue, I think, and as long as those ideas are in line with what your own surgeon recommends, I think they are valuable.  Fortunately, most plastic surgeons have staff members who they have operated on themselves, or at least ones who have had various operations, and they are a wealth of information for other patients.  I am not embarrassed to say that I fully exploit the generosity and good graces of my staff members who are willing to share their own experiences with prospective patients, as I think that kind of networking among patients is invaluable.  And I often learn something myself too!  Sometimes I'm self-conscious that I know so much about so many different kinds of bras, having never once actually worn one myself, but I pick up what I can from people who know!  In any event, while our intentions as surgeons here might be good, I would put more stock in the answers to your question that you would get from other patients.  Check around on some of the patient reviews and comments, ask around for friends or family members who have had breast augmentation, or ask your surgeon's office to put you in touch with either staff members or other patients who are willing to share their wisdom.   Good luck on your surgery!

Joseph L. Grzeskiewicz, MD
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 87 reviews

How long is the recovery from BA?

My patients can usually return to normal activities within a few days and full activity within 2weeks. If the implant is placed under the muscle it tends to hurt more than on top. 

Edward J. Domanskis, MD
Newport Beach Plastic Surgeon
4.4 out of 5 stars 27 reviews

Post Breast Augmentation

Recovery from Breast Augmentation can be a little variable however for most patients the amount of time in pain is short.  Patients may only require pain medications for a few days or less.  It is helpful to be up and walking right away after surgery but most surgeons want to you wait a period of 3-6 weeks before doing any aggressive physical exercise or lifting objects over 10 pounds.  It is helpful to do as many household chores which might require pushing or lifting as you can ahead of time or plan to have someone help you with these things for a while.

J. Dayne Petersen, MD
Salt Lake City Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 23 reviews

Post-Op Breast Augmentation

Hello and thank you for your questions! I would follow your surgeon's recommendations but you are off to a great start. Generally you should avoid lifting or carrying any weight over 10 pounds for the next 2-6 weeks. Have someone who can help you during the next couple of days while you get yourself situated. I wish you the best of luck!

Peter Newen, MD
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 31 reviews

How should I prepare for being home post-op BA? And how long should I make these accommodations?

Thank you for your question.  Hopefully her plastic surgeon has provided typed instructions for your postoperative care.  I recommend that my patients have someone staying with them who can take them home from the hospital and stay at the house at least the first night after breast augmentation.  If the patient has small children I also suggest that someone be available to help with child care during the first 2-3 days after breast augmentation.  Although I encouraged patients to be active to be up and walking and start gentle arm lifting and pectoralis muscle contraction exercises the day after surgery I do not want medications lifting anything heavier than 5 pounds during the first  2 weeks after submuscular breast augmentation.  Lower body exercises can be started at 2 weeks  but upper body heavy lifting  pushups and weightlifting should be avoided for 6 weeks after submuscular breast augmentation.

Post Op Activity Restriction

Most of my patients feel able to carry on with daily routine post op but do reduce arm movement for a few days and avoid heavy lifting- over 10 lbs- for 6 weeks post op. I also advise against cardio exercise so while walking is good for recovery, my restrictions do interfere with more substantial daily exercise routines. Depending on the type of work someone does, some of my patients will return to work within 5 days, others may take longer. I recommend that you discuss your specific needs and your individual situation with your Plastic Surgeon as each has their own preferred protocols.
Take care

Jerome Edelstein, MD
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 176 reviews

You are forgetting about nutrition which is critical

Key factors in the healing of any wound are nutrition and vitamin supplements.  There are specially formulated vitamins that are designed to optimize your healing that we use from Vitamedica.  In addition, we use Arnica and Bromelian to reduce the swelling and bruising.  Before and after surgery, nutrition is a key component that is overlooked by almost every patient and surgeon.  After the operation, your calorie and protein requirements are increased.  We design a nutritional regimen for each patient which is provided to them during the preoperative teaching.  In order to meet the calorie and protein requirements after surgery, the patients typically supplement using protein shakes.  Calorie and protein intake are recorded on a log that we provide and review at the postoperative visits.  The combination of homeopathic medicines, vitamins supplementation, and adequate calorie and protein intake are critical to the wound healing process.  Prior to surgery, we ask the patients to stop all of their own supplements as some can cause problems with bleeding during and after surgery.

Gary Lawton, MD, FACS
San Antonio Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 135 reviews

Post op Breast Aug

Hi Leyla.  It sounds like you are already off to a great start.  Every surgeon has his/her own preferences so make sure you ask your PS what they recommend.  General rule of thumb is no lifting greater then or equal to 10 lbs for the first two weeks after surgery.  Also no activity that would allow bouncing to your breasts or heart rate elevation (no exertion).  Best of luck to you

Milind K. Ambe, MD
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 42 reviews

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.