Dr. E. Stirling Craig has received advanced training in microsurgery at MD Anderson Cancer Center, the nation’s leading cancer center, where she became a faculty member after completing her plastic surgery training at Yale New Haven Hospital. She has also lectured nationally and internationally on breast surgery topics and has over fifteen peer-reviewed scientific articles and chapters.
Dr. Craig has acquired advanced breast surgery techniques studying under plastic surgery pioneers such as Dr. Roger Khouri and Dr. Phillip Blondeel among others.
What Breast Augmentation Can Do
Breast augmentation is typically associated with increasing the size of a woman’s breasts, but there are many more benefits that the procedure affords patients. Women who have lost weight are thrilled with their slimmer bodies. Unfortunately losing a lot of weight often means sacrificing the volume of their breast tissue. Breast augmentation helps patients such as these enjoy their new silhouette by restoring fullness to their breasts. Similarly, women who have had children are usually left with breasts that have a deflated appearance. Breast augmentation surgery restores the fullness and projection these women have lost, giving them pretty and voluptuous breasts. Patients with asymmetrical breasts that have been unhappy with they look also benefit greatly from breast augmentation and love their new natural-looking balanced curves.
Perhaps the most beautiful result that patients experience after their breast implant surgery is a terrific boost in confidence and self-esteem. Breast augmentation patients can look forward to:
- An increase in the projection and volume of their breasts
- Correcting to size differences and asymmetry between their breasts
- Changes to the shape of breasts that have been diagnosed with genetic conditions that prevented normal breast development
- Lifted sagging breasts – to some extent, although patients who experience more severe sagging should consider combining a breast augmentation with a breast lift
- Improvements to their self-image
Inherited Conditions That Breast Augmentation Can Correct
Some women may elect to undergo breast augmentation because their breasts failed to develop completely during puberty. One of the most commonly inherited breast conditions are tuberous breasts, which mainly affects the development of the breasts and therefore the symmetry and shape of the breasts. The characteristics of this condition are:
- Small, narrow breasts
- Asymmetrical breasts
- Large areola and/or nipples
- Droopiness or (ptosis) of the breasts
- Higher than usual inframammary fold (breast crease)
For patients who want fuller, more symmetrical breasts, a breast augmentation corrects the aesthetic problems related to tuberous breasts and other inherited conditions.
Breast Augmentation with Breast Lift
Although a breast augmentation will increase the size and symmetry of your breasts, women with more acute sagging will benefit from combining a breast lift with an augmentation. A breast lift will remove and tighten skin, lifting both breasts in the process. The results are breasts that are positioned higher on your chest and have a more youthful, perky appearance.
Choosing the Right Breast Implants
There are several important decisions that you will have to make before a breast lift or augmentation surgery. When selecting the shape of breast implants, you have two options, round or teardrop shaped. Round implants offer women more fullness on top and provide more projection. Teardrop-shaped implants have a more natural appearance and a gradual slope, producing a fuller bottom.
You will also consult with Dr. Fusi or Dr. Craig about where your incision site will be located; in the crease under your breast (inframammary), around the lower half of your nipple (periareolar), in your underarm area (axillary), or through your belly button (transumbilical).
Breast augmentation patients have two options for implant placement. Women have the option of having their breast implants placed under the pectoral muscle (sub-muscular placement) or over the muscle (sub-glandular placement). Implants that are placed over the muscle create more cleavage, and the surgery is less invasive. The benefits of placing breast implants under the muscle are that the muscle supports the implant which reduces the weight placed on the skin. Having your implants placed under the muscle also produces more natural-looking results.
Deciding between saline breast implants, silicone implants, and gummy bear (they have the consistency of gummy bear candy) is still another decision for patients in consultation with Dr. Fusi or Dr. Craig. Saline implants are filled with sterile saline water. They are symmetrical looking and firm to the touch. Silicone implants are filled with silicone gel which feels more natural to the touch than saline breast implants. Gummy bear breast implants are form-stable, meaning they retain their shape even if the outer shell breaks. Some women are surprised to learn about gummy bear-type implants, as this is a newer form of an implant.
You will also get to choose between smooth implants and textured breast implants. Smooth breast implants are softer than textured implants and move more like natural breast tissue. Textured breast implants work well for teardrop shaped implants because it lessens the likelihood of rotation.
Picking the size of your new breasts is not as simple as choosing between a C cup or a D cup. Most patients have an ideal breast size in mind long before setting foot in a plastic surgeon’s office. While it might be tempting to stick with the breast size that you initially want, consulting with an experienced breast augmentation surgeon like Dr. Fusi or Dr. Craig will ensure that you make an informed choice that will be most beneficial to you now and that you will be happy with for years to come. Your consultation will allow you to:
- Receive an objective opinion about breast augmentation surgery
- Measure the correct implant size for your body proportion
- Clarify any concerns you have regarding the cost, procedure, and outcome
Dr. Fusi and Dr. Craig continuously evaluate breast implant options for their long-term safety and effectiveness. They specialize in aesthetic and reconstructive breast surgery, providing patients with the latest techniques in breast augmentation for beautiful and lasting results.
What Will Happen During Breast Augmentation Surgery?
On the day of your surgery, will meet you at a surgery center. A trained anesthesiologist will administer general anesthesia and once it has taken effect our surgeons will:
- Make the incision based on your decision during the consultation
- Dissect your breast pockets to accommodate your implants
- Place the implants under or over the muscle and position them as symmetrically as the anatomy allows
- Close the incisions to encourage healing
- Most patients will be able to return home with the assistance of a friend or family member on the same day
How Long Will It Take to Recover from Breast Augmentation Surgery?
While breast augmentation surgery is among one of the most common plastic surgery procedures, you will still require time to recover and heal from surgery. Patients typically require only one or two days to recover from the first phase of healing, but you should set aside an additional few days to rest and refrain from activities such as:
- Vigorous exercise
- Lifting objects more than five pounds
- Any activity that raises your heart rate or blood pressure
Over the course of a few weeks, you should expect some discomfort and swelling to remain. When you return to Dr. Craig or Dr. Fusi for follow-up exams, they will inform you about your healing progress and when you can resume normal activity.
What Will My Results Look Like?
Following your breast augmentation, you will notice an immediate difference in the size and shape of your breasts. Patients that undergo a combined breast augmentation and a breast lift will also notice that the position of their breasts is higher. As you heal from your procedure, you can expect the swelling to decrease and your surgical scar to fade over time.
Our doctors recognize that for patients to receive long-lasting results, an honest line of communication must be established. That is why Dr. Fusi and/ or Dr. Craig will spend as much time as necessary discussing your goals as well as educating you about every aspect of the procedure. Working with you every step of the way will ensure that you absolutely love the way your breasts look.
For expert advice about breast augmentation, contact our Houston office at (713) 346-9909, to schedule your consultation.