Recovery Time After Breast Augmentation?

I work as a RN on a pretty busy floor. Wondering how much time I will need to take off from work for a breast augmentation. I'm pretty sure with the research I have done that I will be going under the muscle. Also not trying to get too large of an implant. Just want to be able to fit into clothes better more then anything. The recovery time is a huge part of my decision to do this. I can't afford a 6 week leave from work.

Doctor Answers 21

Recovery Time After Breast Augmentation? #breastaugmentation

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We all vary with our rules but there are a few that I feel are pretty hard nosed. I do not allow patients to do any heavy lifting more than 10-15 pounds for 6 weeks. There are several reasons why this is important. There is an inherent risk of bleeding after creating the pocket for the first few weeks and too much vigorous work can lead to a hematoma. Incisions will not have their strength back until the classic 6 week mark and you do not want to risk an open incision with an implant beneath. I allow moderate cardiac activity after a month as long as there is no bouncing activity of the breasts. If you do not lift heavy at work then you can be back within several days. Realize every patient has a different pain threshold and some take longer than a few days to bounce back.

Breast Augmentation Recovery

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Breast augmentation is a major surgery, and healing and getting back to “feeling normal” does take time.  Most surgeons recommend a post-operative recovery time of 6-12 weeks, and it can take even longer for all the post-operative swelling to disappear and the implants to settle into their final position.  I would encourage you to be patient during the healing process, as difficult as that can be sometimes!

Suzanne M. Quardt, MD
Palm Springs Plastic Surgeon

Recovery Time After Breast Augmentation

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The recovery time after having Breast Augmentation is relatively quick.  Its typical for patients to take the pain medication for 24 to 72 hours post procedure to keep the pain at a minimum.  Depending on the type of work of work that you do, you should feel well enough to resume your day to day activities at 3 to 5 days after the surgery.  As for any strenuous activity such as heavy lifting or working out, you should refrain from this for about 4 weeks post-procedure or when your surgeon gives you that clearance.  

With you being an RN and very active, I recommend taking 5 or 6 days off from work after your surgery.  You may still experience residual discomfort but you will know if you are pushing yourself too hard.

Breast Augmentation Recovery

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I would say that generally most patients that have breast augmentation surgery have a fairly quick recovery.  It is not uncommon for patients to return to work in less than a week.  Most patients are not ready, however, to go back to strenuous activity at this time, return to the gym, return to heavy lifting or pushing prior to at least 4-6 weeks.  But, returning to light activities such as going back to work where you are either at a computer or working under conditions that do not require a whole lot of physical exertion, then it is feasible to return after only one week of recovery time. 

Breast Augmentation Recovery

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This is a great question since many women want to know the same thing about breast augmentation recovery.  If you have a conventional post operative protocol it will likely be a week or two before you can return to work.  However, with a 24 hour rapid recovery breast augmentation, you should be able to return to work in just 3 to 4 days.  I have had a hairdresser who went back to wrok the next day and a couple of nurses who we did on Thursday and were back to work on Monday.  The 24 hour protocol allows you to get back to everything as soon as you feel you are ready and this is almost always in about 48 hours no matter if your implants are placed above or below the muscle.  With this breast augmentation recovery protocol there are no drains and no narcotics. In addition, if you have Sientra gummy bear implants placed you will not have any special bras, binders or massage.

I have added a video of what this recovery entails along with a website reference.

I hope that helps.

Best regards.

Recovery Time After Breast Augmentation?

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Each patient responds differently to pain and surgery.

Be ready to experience some pain, tightness and swelling during the first few days of recovery. This is common response for this procedure, so you should be pain-controlled and rest for at least 4 days.

Generally after any breast procedure with implant I recommend from 1 upto 2 weeks off work depending on the work done and type of patients' business. But recovery may be slower, especially when it is sub-muscular placement.
You should avoid lifting significant weight or manual work, ( you'll need somebody to care after your children, that need lifting), moving too fast and doing good work for 3 weeks while your wounds are healing.

Please always take in mind that each patient responds differently to pain and surgery. I tried to describe the usual or common response for Breast Augmentation procedure.

And I hope this helps

Recovery time after breast augmentation?

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Thank you for your question! The "rapid recovery" breast augmentation is a newer philosophy with many surgeons to expedite activity and expedite recovery following the breast augmentation procedure. In my practice, utilizing the fast track technique after breast augmentations, women are readily able and doing most things virtually immediately after this procedure. It is the similar techniques as described and is really gaining popularity. She is even recommended to go out for dinner that evening. Pain is minimal and you will likely be on a scheduled antiinflammatory regimen/pain control along with early exercises/range of motion techniques immediately. However, follow your surgeon's instructions for postoperative care and restrictions, but it is common for most women to resume many of the preoperative activities and duties within a week. I typically restrict heavy lifting and vigorous exercise for approximately 4-6 weeks Swelling and settling of the implant typically occurs over a 6-12 week period along with placement in a compression-type bra for the same time period, while your incisions commonly resolve to its final appearance in up to a year. Hope that this helps! Best wishes for a great result!

About three weeks

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Generally, I advise patients that they can start doing more intense physical activity at 3 weeks, and upper body strength exercises at 6 weeks after surgery. If you don't lift heavy things in your job or things like that, then you can probably return to work in three weeks  if your recovery is going well since you say your job is pretty busy. However, you should ask your surgeon as they may have different guidelines.  

Time off Work for Nurse

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Each surgeon has his or her own guidelines for recovery. Typically, patients can return to light activity after 5 to 7 days. More strenuous activity may take 3 to 6 weeks. Consult with your board certified surgeon as he or she will understand the scope of the surgery and the specifics of you.

Augmentation Recovery Period

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Dear Megan,
Thank you for your post. There are a lot of variables to account for after breast augmentation and what to expect in the recovery process. Done well, breast augmentation can have a very long lasting beautiful result. The following is an outline of what to expect after augmentation based on some of these variables. In general, treat 'dual plane' augmentation as very similiar to 'sub-muscular' in the recovery process.

1. Pain: In general, breast augmentation is tolerated very well. When the implant is placed sub-facial or sub-glandular, i.e. above the muscle, there is very little pain post-operative. The muscle is left in place and in general, when I perform this technique, women have surgery on Friday, and are back to work (as long as they are not lifting heavy objects) on Monday. When the implant is placed sub-muscular, then there more pain and soreness as the muscle has been elevated which is similiar to having a pulled or torn muscle. This creates more swelling and takes longer to heal. In these case, most women take at least a week off of work.

2. Swelling and Size: It is very common to be about a size bigger right after surgery than what your final result will be. Swelling starts to occur right after surgery and tends to peak in the first week. After about a month you will have lost most of the swelling, but still not completely at baseline. After about another 3 months or so, you will have lost 99% of your swelling, but still have a pretty good idea of your final size at 1 month. I wouldn't spend a lot of money on bras until 3 months though, as they might not fit perfectly after all the swelling goes away. Also, the more activity you have, the longer the swelling stays, the more that needs to be done as far as lift etc. with surgery, the longer your swelling stays. As stated above, going below the muscle tends to produce more swelling and lasts for longer.

3. Scars: The natural healing process undergoes multiple phases, but in general, the first phase is the inflamatory phase were any scar will be firmer and may turn red or darker initially. This tends to last for 3 months. After this phase is the resolution phase where the scar inflammation goes away and all scars will be at their baseline at 1 year. The scars are mostly at their baseline at 6 months. The scars should be minimal if placed well, and sutured properly. I also like to protect the scars from stretching or widening in the first few months with surgical skin tape. The incision will be weak at first and susceptible to stretch or widening.

4. Massage: Your doctor may recommend early or late massage, depending on what is trying to be accomplished. In general, early massage is to manipulate a high implant or stretch a constricted area, such as in tubular breast syndrome, and late massage is to help fight capsular contraction. Search 'Breast Massage' to find my recommendations on this.

5. Exercise: In general, I ask my patients to keep away from aerobic activities in the first 2 weeks following surgery. Increased activity can increase swelling and hyper-swelling can cause stretch marks. Following this, 'non-bouncing' aerobic activity is fine, such as speed walking or cycling, but would like to keep the implants from moving too much until the capsule that forms around the implant has a chance to heal and become stronger. At 6 weeks, I clear any type of activity.

6. Infection: Infection after augmentation is very rare. Most surgeon give post-operative antibiotics to help protect you from infection.

7. Hematoma/Seroma: These are also very rare after augmentation. If the pocket for the implant that is made during surgery is a hand in glove fit, then there is very little room for any fluid to collect. It is important that the surgical pocket be free of any bleeding prior to closure to keep a hematoma from happening. If a hematoma does occur, it is important to drain the hematoma to prevent capsular contraction.

8. Sleeping: I ask women to sleep on their backs with their post-operative bra on after surgery to keep the implants in their proper position until the capsule that forms around the implant has a chance to heal.

I hope this has answered most of your post-operative questions.

Best Wishes,
Pablo Prichard, MD

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.