Breast implant surgery has been embraced by millions of women around the globe, despite the medical and social controversies surrounding the procedure. Women’s’ breasts since time immemorial have been eye candy for men and a source of pride for women. No wonder, it has also been the inspiration for much beauty in literature.
Breast enhancement is the buzzword of the cosmetic plastic surgery industry and breast implants have been heralded and desired by women of every shape, size, and financial background. Also called mammoplasty, a breast implant procedure increases the volume of the breast(s) by the placement of an implant within the chest, behind each breast. Changes as a result of weight loss, childbirth, and aging can lead a woman to the decision to undergo a breast implant procedure. And although the safety of the breast implants has been questioned in the past, recent research has concluded that saline breast implants are safe to use and to receive.
What is Breast Implant Surgery?
Breast implants surgery is the planting of prosthesis to enhance the size and shape of a woman’s breasts or to reconstruct the breast. Of the four types of breast implants, saline (salt water) filled implants are now the most popular, and regarded as the safest, in cosmetic surgery circles.
Breast Implants Surgery – Before the Implants
In the initial consultation, the physician will be looking to determine whether a patient is the best candidate for the breast implant procedure. An extensive medical history will be taken, as well as medical tests to determine the patient’s current health status. Before the breast implant surgery, the surgeon must have a comprehensive overview of the patient’s health – so it is necessary that any problems, or medications, or recreational drug use be disclosed at this appointment. Some patients’ history may preclude them from undergoing the breast implants procedure, or at least need to be scheduled at a later date when health issues and habits have been resolved.
Breast Implants Surgery – Who are they for?
The best candidate for breast implants is a woman that has completed the growth process—usually the age of 18 is determined to be the cutoff age. And women who are not pregnant or breastfeeding are also good candidates for breast implants. Patients should also be in good health and not planning significant weight loss. Any of these factors can change the intended results of the breast implants.
Breast Implants Surgery – The Procedure
The breast implants procedure is usually done under general anesthesia, or when the patient is ‘asleep’. The implant is inserted through a small incision, with hardly any scar that can be noticed. Sometimes the incision for the breast implants is underneath the breast, or it may be within the lower edge of the areola, or it may be in the armpit area so as to avoid any scars in the breast region. After the incision is made, the surgeon opens a pocket under the natural breast where the breast implant will be placed. Once the implant is in place, then the incision is closed and the next breast is done, if necessary.
Breast Implants Surgery – Risks and Complications
Breast implants have always been frowned upon by medical professionals and moral police. But there are real risks associated with breast implants. The most recent controversy is that of implants filled with a silicone gel, so many physicians are using implants that are filled with a saline solution instead. In the rare occurrence the implant is punctured and the contents are released, the saline solution is reabsorbed by the body without adverse effects. With silicone implants, some patients have reported disastrous effects from the breakage of the silicone filled breast implants. It seems that the silicone can induce the body’s immune system to respond and it can cause a type of chronic autoimmune disease in some.
Other possible complications include the same as with any surgery: reactions from the anesthesia during the receiving of the breast implants, infection, slippage of the implant, and patient dissatisfaction with the results.
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