Flat 34AA - 275cc Breast Implants, Mod+ Under the muscle silicone - Minneapolis, MN
As a always-flat chested girl to a very flat...
Background Information on why I chose this surgery (and some before photos)
After having children, not only did my tissue not increase (I wore the same sized bras while breastfeeding as I did before breastfeeding), but it seemed to decrease. And, as many women have experienced, there was a deflation and sagging of the tissue. Because of this, my nipples (now slightly longer and larger), often became almost folded up on themselves or sunken in. I wasn't horrified and I didn't hate my breasts, I just honestly looked at them and thought 'there's nothing there.' I want to wear clothing and fill my bra. I want to not have to wear a bra and support dresses without paying to add padding and have alterations.
I'd discussed augmentation with my husband at length before and during pregnancies, as a future option. He always encouraged me that he'd support my choice. The best way for me to describe why I decided 'yes' on this procedure is because I want to look in the mirror and feel as though I look the way I'm supposed to. My breasts have done what they are meant for, but now I want them to look how I feel they were meant to.
I did some research on surgeons, and sent some emails a few months back. Minneapolis Plastic Surgery was so quick to respond and gave a great impression even via email. They were able to schedule a quick consultation. I was impressed with their on-site surgical center, and the quality and detailed care they offer before, during, and after surgery. They use top of the line medications. They explain each step of the process very well. The nurse who helped me was the same nurse from start to finish - I loved her. She has already called me at home two times to check in, give reminders, and will call again tomorrow.
I've noticed that there are a lot of smaller/petite framed individuals who opt for augmentation sizes ranging from 210-275. I was so thankful for their picture and reviews, but also wondered how that would look on myself. As I mentioned above, I am 5'8", roughly 140lb. My pre-op cup size was AA or smaller - when I wore a bra, I used the padding to give the impression of breasts under my clothing. My bra-band size was comfortably a 34". So, normally I wore a heavily padded 34A bra. However, even this often looked unrealistic. The cups, since not filled out, would cause my 'breasts' to appear close together, high up, etc.
12 hours into recovery - 12 things you should know
- Have multiple ice packs ready. My surgeon said that even frozen peas would work, but I feel as though the ice packs are more flexible and stay colder longer. They feel great. Currently I'm using four: one under each breast, one in between along my sternum, and one along the top. Do ice packs. They're amazing.
- Your sternum/central chest bone might be sore. I felt it right away in recovery, and was surprised to feel it over the meds. I hadn't read much about that pain. It also became a little itchy as the day went on, but not unbearable.
- Do laundry - have multiple outfits ready that are easy on/easy off. Button ups are fab.
- Make some simple meals ahead of time and freeze them, especially if you have a family. Or just a box of crackers.
- Have a helper or yourself jotting down times you've taken meds. It's easy to forget. I have mine bedside with post it notes for the next time I need it. Yes, a cell phone would work, too. I'm so analog though. :p
- Find a cheerleader. I've only told two people about my surgery, and plan to keep it that way. But, my best friend who drove me home said the most amazing thing: "I'm so proud of you." Proud of my choice and my body. Support is huge.
- Shave! Haha. I figured I won't be bending and twisting for awhile, so I shaved like summer and now I don't have to worry about it!
- Take before and after pics, even if they're just for you.
- Got lots of pillows? They're cheap at target. Sleeping propped up means my poor husband lost his pillows. Oops!
- The sizers are pretty accurate, and if possible, try them more than once! I went in, tried some sizes and felt HUGE. Then I looked at a million pictures at home and got more confused. Haha. When I went back in I tried the sizers on with clothes and it was a completely different experience. I know I made the right choice.
- find things to do online. Netflix. Christmas shopping. Make yourself take it easy and be prepped for that. Like a staycation;)
- I have a front opening clasp bra from the surgical center - it's a little tender to open it, I needed help, and tender again when you clasp it and bring the breasts closer together.
It's late and it's been a whirlwind but I will update at 24 hours and with more pictures!
24 Hours Post-Op (with pictures)
I'm still feeling a lot of pain on my sternum. It feels like bruising. Even the lightest touch hurts the bruising. My breasts themselves feel as they did when breastfeeding. If anyone knows how it feels to be engorged, that's the best way to describe the feeling of tightness (both how they feel on my body, and when I touch them). Honestly, though, I have a lot of numbness so the 'tight' feeling isn't painful or uncomfortable. I can't feel my nipples at all. I hope beyond hope that isn't permanent. Did anyone else lose nipple feeling all together? How long did it take to regain feeling?
I woke up this morning with new sore areas: my underarm area, and along the outer curve of my breasts. I can feel cold on them, but can't feel much sensation. I've read that this is very much to be expected. It's only been one day! Ha!
I've found that simple, light meals and hydration are really important. I get nauseous really easily with my medications. I didn't sleep well sitting up last night, so I've been napping off and on. I feel so lazy! But, I have to keep telling myself that the rest is so necessary for recovery and to avoid capsular contraction.
I feel like I look pretty swollen. How do things look based on what you've seen of others and yourself? I'm really looking forward to getting the tape off to get the full effect. The tape is semi-supportive, so I actually think my breasts will lower a tiny bit once it's removed. Just FYI, the dark lines are from the marker lines. The red lines are from the surgical bra, which I believe is a little too tight.
Questions? Thoughts? Comments? How do I look?! I can't believe these pictures are my body.
48 Hours going strong - feeling more like myself every day!
First off, I woke up this morning feeling MUCH better. So far I've been taking my medications as scheduled. Last night, however, I took a pain med before bed and didn't take anything else until I woke up at 8:00am again this morning. I did feel tight, but hardly any pain at all. It's hard to explain - the swelling seemed down a bit, the sternum bruising felt less tender, and I felt willing to be more mobile. In other words, I didn't feel like I immediately needed the meds. But, to stay in front of the pain, I took a half of the pain tablet instead of a full pill. While much of my outer breasts feel numb (and nipples), I felt aware of the muscles in my arm pit area. They're a little tender but it's all totally bearable. As I feel them even now, the side of my ribs feel bruised but there is no bruising visible.
If you've done this before, how did y'all feel about your size? I took a shower today (my PS said I could take one yesterday, but I didn't feel ready), and tried on a few different pieces that used to fit me. One swimsuit didn't fit at all. The teal one (see pictures) looks normal. I know that it doesn't look dramatic or probably even very impressive, but I am actually filling it up and supporting it! I'm not flat anymore! And I feel like I still look like me, which was so important to me.
I think the image that surprises me the most is the black halter-top. I look exactly how I wanted to in this picture. In others, I feel like I look a little small but I also think the surgical tape is throwing me off. I can't see my full breasts. And, I have to remember my reasons for doing this in the first place. I wanted to fill my clothes, fill my bra, and feel like myself. I think after staring at pictures of how 275cc looks on smaller framed women, I'm feeling like mine seem smallish. Does that make sense? What do you all think?
Also, anyone who has been through this and had numbness - please weigh in! I'd love to hear how that changed/progressed as time went on. Thanks!
The Tape is off! One Week update with pictures!
But, we survived, and today I had my one week appointment. I've been excited for today, if only because I knew all that tape was coming off. I took a shower over the weekend, and I kept feeling this burning under the tape. It stung pretty badly. The skin under the tape was very itchy, as well.
For some reason, last night and this morning were the most painful days. I've not been taking pain medication for several days now. Lots of pressure and soreness in my muscles and along the sides of my ribs. The nurse at the PS office said that was normal. They also said that everything looks fantastic with no concerns.
Ripping off the tape stung, but I've always been sensitive to things on my skin. Whenever I wax my eyebrows I look like Halloween for days. But, the tape actually has ripped away parts of my skin. I think water got trapped underneath, and it caused dryness and cracking ( you can see it in the pictures). But, most painful by far has been the incisions. My left scar stings horribly, and wearing this surgical bra which cuts in, makes it worse. But, I got the OK for new bras today! No underwire, nothing that pulls them together or pushes them up. I did get a sports bra with a thick, soft band which helps a lot.
I've been told I need to rest more, use scar-gel (complimentary from the PS) after 3-4 weeks, no lifting, etc. I'm regaining some feeling and sensation. I still have numb areas, and quite often throughout the day have some gentle pins-and-needles type feelings all over my breasts. Icing in the evening still gives lots of comfort.
Anybody else have stinging incisions? Despite the pain, I'm so impressed with the incisions. I think there will be minimal scarring if any!
Finding a Balance
I took some good advice, hoped in a warm shower (which really seemed to loosen tensed muscles), and then did light activity around the house. I felt the best yesterday and today that I've felt so far. I have some weirdly - what's the word - sensitive areas? Washing my armpits isn't painful, but it almost feels like the touch is too much to bear at times. It's bizarre.
I'm understanding what morning-boob is! Sitting up in the morning is the hardest part. The muscle relaxers help a lot, and I take an occasional extra strength tylenol. Oh yeah, the stinging is nearly gone. I think the surgical tape was pulling and stretching the skin, and also drying it out. With it off and with a new bra, it's nearly gone. If I twist and the bra pulls against the incisions, then I feel the sting. Much more on the left than the right. But it's a world of difference - the day the tape came off, when we shopped for a bra, I felt the sting with every step and didn't want to move.
I'm learning to listen to my body better - when to stop, when to keep moving. It's a fun journey. It's so much more fun to walk past the mirror, I'll say that! Anybody else suddenly love stepping out of the shower??
I can't give high enough praise to the doctor, nurses, surgery team, and even the young woman in billing/paper work. This office and team make you feel at home and comfortable from the moment you walk in. I wasn't sure what to expect, but they are all down to earth, friendly, sweet and thoughtful individuals. They embraced my sense of humor, and truly made me feel like my decision for surgery was normal and valid. They listed to all of my questions and concerns, and never pressured or pushed me to do anything I wasn't comfortable with. They live up to their slogan 'All they'll see is you.' They valued me as a person, knew my kids names, and cared about me to the point of calling to check in. Above and beyond care. Love, love, love.