As an Orange County breast surgeon I am going to take you through a patient’s recovery after breast augmentation.
I see the patient 24-48 hours after surgery. The breast wrap is removed, which is always a relief, since it has to be somewhat tight. Many patients feel their pain is much improved after the breast wrap is removed. The patient looks at her breasts and complains why one breast is slightly fuller on top than the other. This is so typical of younger patients! I re-iterate our discussion at the consultation that it will take 3-6 months for the implants to settle. The patient tries on the various size sports bra which she has brought with her. Usually one of them will fit. It is important for the sports bra not to be too tight, as it will push the implants up. During the first three months, for most patients, the goal is to keep the implant from riding too high.
I see the patient again 6-8 days after surgery. At that time, the sutures are removed. The patient again looks at the breasts and complains about the minor asymmetry. I go over our discussion again! I instruct the patient on proper implant massage, which must be performed at least five times a day.
The patient returns for follow-up one month after surgery. The implants are settling in and are beginning to form a more natural look. Although the asymmetry has improved, the patient still complains. I go over our consultation discussion again! I instruct the patient to continue the sports bra and breast massage. She may start exercising as tolerated, but no chest exercises are allowed.
The patient returns three months after surgery. In some patients, the implants are settled in and the patient does not complain. If the implant has not settled, the patient will complain about the asymmetry. I repeat our conversation from previous office visits again! The patient may now wear any type of bra she desires.
Six months after surgery, the patient returns for another office visit. By now, majority of patients have stopped complaining! The implants have settled and have developed a natural look and feel. The patient will schedule her annual follow-up in six months.
The anniversary has arrived! It has been one year since the surgery. To my trained eyes, there are subtle changes in the shape and feel of the implant. The patient is pleased with the result (thank God!). I recommend patient return for a follow-up annually.
This is a typical recovery scenario for my Orange County breast augmentation patients. Not everyone will have the same experience and, rarely, some patients will develop complications.
Michael A. Jazayeri, M.D. is a board certified plastic surgeon with over 10 years of experience. His office is located in Orange County, California. To schedule a complimentary consultation, please call (714) 834-0101.
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