Hello all, I thought I'd share my journey here in...
Hello all, I thought I'd share my journey here in the hopes it may help someone else. It was right around this time five years ago when I heavily contemplated implants. I was very physically fit and lost a lot of breast volume. In May 2012 I got 350cc Mentor silicone gel implants.
My surgeon was great, did exactly what I asked for and I have had zero complications. A few general "dislikes" if you will, with having implants:
-I struggled to regain strength in my chest and had to modify a lot of my workouts.
-I have a hard time finding bras and can't get good cleavage. I definitely don't have the high profile look, it's more wide and soft. I wear sports bras most of the time which gives me the uniboob look.
- I've always had a bit of residual pain and have never felt 100%, especially in the outer lateral and lower areas of the pocket.
I debated having them out but those all seemed like small reasons. Then my aunt got breast cancer two years ago BUT just told me this week she tested positive for the BRCA gene mutation. She now has a uterine mass and is having a hysterectomy. So. I've decided that implants aren't worth it. I've had a baby this past year and it seems like my boobs are sagging more. I'd rather be small and saggy than big and saggy. I want to stick around for my son and if there's a chance my implants could delay cancer detection then I don't want them. I've got an appt with my OB/GYN next month for my annual and I'm going to get the BRCA testing. I'm also shopping for a surgeon.
I'll probably have to wait until after the first of the year to get some finances in order. From what I've read, I likely won't get my insurance to cover an explant unless I have medical necessity and I don't think my reasons are considered necessary. I'm also not sure if I'll need the capsulectomy but from my limited research it seems like I should just do it since I want to be able to see cancer early and also since I'm already going under the knife and don't plan to again for a long long time.
Anyone else's thoughts and experiences are much appreciated!
The truth comes out
Well ladies, my husband told me tonight he wants me to keep my boobs :( He loves my giant boobs and I do not. He's been saying he supports my decision either way but I know he loves them. It sucks but i'm the one who has to live with them. They're so heavy and now that I'm looking forward to explanting I can't wait to feel lighter.
I know part of the issue is that I was 40lbs lighter when I had them placed. I know when I lose more weight my natural breasts will be smaller again but I'm good with that. I'm probably a natural C-D cup right now, as I was a B-C when I got implants. Ladies, I didn't need them. I wish I knew then what I know now.
In good news, I've got three consultations scheduled. First one is 9/21, then 9/27 and another in Nov. I'll cancel the Nov one if I really love one of the first two PS I'm meeting. I'm happy to be making the first steps. I'm also obsessed with finding explant pics of ladies with a natural C cup to try and see what my boobs might look like after all of this. I'm ready to get this whole ordeal behind me and move on!
Hello! Well I had my first consult with Dr Kaye Riolo today. I really liked her; she was very straightforward with everything and didn't try to change my mind about implant removal. She said she prefers to do a full capsulectomy and that it would be under general. I asked about getting an MRI to check for rupture; initially she said it wouldn't be necessary but said if that's a route I want to pursue to see if insurance would pay for it then we can see what they say.
Her quote was $5,000 total. I was really hoping for the $3,500 ballpark but the capsulectomy makes it more expensive and I think I'd feel better with the capsules gone. My next step is to ask them to submit a request for an MRI to my insurance, to rule out rupture. If it is ruptured, then I'll ask them to submit another form to authorize the surgery. There are obviously no guarantees but I figure it's worth a shot.
I had my second consultation today, with Dr John Burnett. I immediately had a better feeling about him; he was extremely down to earth and kind. He actually did not think I would need a capsulectomy; he said it wouldn't be necessary unless the scars were very thick or the implant had ruptured. He said my surgery would be very simple and would likely only take 30 min for the actual procedure. His surgery center is affiliated with one of the hospitals in our area (it's actually the outpatient surgery department of the hospital) and I think that may be why the fees is so much lower than the other doctor was.
Altogether, my quote was $2,800. The fact that I felt more comfortable with Dr Burnett sold me and the lower price is a major bonus. Dr Riolo's office was very ritzy but I actually preferred the more hospital vibe I got from Dr Burnett.
Hubby and I talked it over and are ready to get the ball rolling after the first of the year!
Surgery date set!
I decided to go with Dr Burnett and paid to reserve my surgery date!! I'm waiting until after a planned trip, so I don't have to worry about pain or lifting luggage. Pre-op is 11/22 and surgery is 12/5. I'm starting to get a little nervous. What if my belly looks huge after surgery? Right now my big chest hides my big stomach. Ugh I know I'm just getting cold feet and I'm sure I'll be happy when it's done. I guess I'm questioning myself because my experience with implants hasn't been terrible, just mediocre. I'm revisiting this lovely place to remind myself why I want them out and how happy I'll be!
It's getting close!
My surgery is coming up soon, tomorrow is my last work day before surgery. My preop went smooth last week and everything is all set. The only thing I'm upset about at this point is that my surgery time is 1pm which means I can't eat all day and I'm going to be a raging bitch by then LOL!!! No coffee and no food and we aren't leaving for the surgery til 11 am which means I'll be watching my toddler eat and my husband drink coffee :(. Oh well. It's for a good cause.
Other than that I'm getting really excited!!! I can't wait to get my chest back to normal. I started a new exercise program last week and I can't wait til I can do jumping jacks without giant boobs bouncing around.
I decided to upload some pictures, I'll add more just before surgery and of course some after as I'm healing. This is a Bali wire free bra in 38D; I bought this when I was pregnant and desperate for a wireless bra because I was in so much pain. It's way too small in the cup, I'm going to try it on post op to really see a difference lol.
Yay! Surgery day is finally here. Just took a few last minute pictures and looking forward to my smaller boobs. I had a hard time sleeping last night but I'm just counting down the hours now!
Implants are out! Here's a short recap on my day.... Surgery was an hour late due to a previous surgery going late. Luckily I kept my phone with me and read. I went in at 2 and was out by 3. Felt super groggy for about 30 minutes then I got up and went to the bathroom. I felt great and everyone kept saying I looked like I was doing great!! We were in the car heading home by 4:15.
So here are my dislikes.... Doctor prescribed zero narcotics so if pain gets bad I'm on my own. He told me I would be just fine with Tylenol so I hope that's the case. I still have Valium from my breast augmentation 4.5 years ago so if I absolutely need something to relax and sleep I'll take that.
Also, he didn't give me a surgical bra!!!! Like, what the heck dude? My nurse even said they don't do removals that often but I was surprised that he gave zero instruction on compression or wearing a bra. My husband was not impressed. I bought a Carefix Alice bra last week and I'm glad I did. It feels a bit tight around the rib cage but not terribly so so I think it fits okay.
Other than all that I'm just tired. My incisions felt very burn-y at first but now it's a dull pain (they also gave me one Percocet in recovery that is still on board). My boobs definitely have that sunken look where the implant was sitting and I'm hopeful it will fill in. Otherwise I have no weird folds or creases and it looks like my breast crease will stay where it was for the most part. The asymmetry is noticeable but I think it looks worse in pictures and I lived with it for 30 years so I'm not too worried about it.
And it's true what everyone says! I can take a deeper breath now! It's so nice!
Post op day one
Hello! I'm doing pretty good today. I used my pregnancy body pillow last night and managed to sleep half on my back and half on my side. I took a Valium to help me sleep and no regrets there. I'm managing my pain with Tylenol and Motrin, I'm only hurting where the incisions are and it alternates from burning to dull pain.
I switched from the Carefix bra to my Merena bra I had from my first surgery. The Carefix band kept rolling up, right onto my incisions. It also doesn't seem to give the same support as Merena. I'll definitely use the Carefix as a sleep or lounge bra when I'm a bit more healed.
I'm really happy with how my breasts look at this stage. I have a lot of tissue, though it's hang-y, I can deal with that. I have that "scoop" missing from my upper lateral pole area, which almost makes me wonder how lateral my implants were.
Also great news! I'm already getting sensation back!!! My nips are hardening a lot more and overall I'm feeling more!! This is great news!!!
Post op day two
Feeling pretty good today, just tired/run down. Pain is pretty low, I haven't need anything yet today but will take some Tylenol soon. I was able to was my hair in the sink and feel so much better afterwards!
Here are some updated pictures. I'm still really happy with how things are looking!
Post op day four
Yesterday was a bit tough, probably my worst day mentally and physically. I started feeling better and did a bit more around the house. That put me in worse pain which made me anxious to be healed already. I'm used to wrestling with my toddler, playing with him at the park and cleaning my house more so I was feeling down from not being able to do all that. I've heard day three is the worst and it seemed to be the case for me!
Today is day four; I drove myself to the dentist for a cleaning, then did two errands. I was completely wiped out after that so I came home and took a nap. This day has flown by! I've got three more full days off before going back to work Tuesday and am enjoying it as much as I can and trying not to feel guilty about my husband doing the majority of the housework and parenting.
As far as physical feeling, I am loving being implant free. I think my sensation will be back about 90% or maybe more when I'm all healed. I love not feeling an implant when I touch myself or roll over in bed. I have no regrets removing them and wish I could tell everyone don't get them in the first place!!!
Post op day six
Feeling pretty good, been doing more around the house and picking up my toddler here and there. Only taking Tylenol once or twice a day for pain. I have zero bruising that I can see and I get my dressings off tomorrow. I remember barely being able to bend over without my boobs feeling like they'd rip off after my augmentation and this time around I'm doing so much more.
I showed my hubby the boobs today and he said they look like they did before implants! Yay!!! They didn't have the "scoop" before but I only showed him from the front so he probably didn't notice or care about that lol. Honestly he's the type that won't care anyway, as long as he can touch them once they're healed lol.
Here are some updated pics, before and after
Two weeks post op
Hello!! I'm two weeks post op now and pretty much back to normal. My steri strips came off a few days ago and the incisions look pretty good. I wasn't very happy when my doctors assistant practically ripped my dressings off during the post op appt, leaving raw patches, but those are healing up too.
I'm back to work for a week now and besides some minor aches, it's going well. I'm taking the occasional Motrin if I get sore. I feel fine stretching and reaching, and lifting my toddler almost as much as I used to. The only thing I'm not doing yet is sleeping on my stomach and regular exercise (just walking).
I'm so happy with how my boobs feel. I always had this "hole" on my inner right boob, it was an area where I felt the implant meet my breast tissue, and it was super gross and weird to me. Now I feel nothing but me. I love it.
I do have a literal dome shaped stretch mark on my left boob, right where the implant was. So imagine someone took a marker and outlined where the implant was (the top half). That's what the stretch mark looks like. I hope it goes away when the scoop fills in but if not, I can live with it. I'm dressed most of the time and that's when I feel the best with my new and improved size. I feel pretty damn fine naked too.