Breast implant surgery is a breast augmentation procedure, where implants are inserted behind each breast to improve their shape and size.
BEFORE & AFTER
What is a Breast Implant?
Breast implant surgery is a procedure to enhance breast shape and size. The procedure involves Dr. Bray inserting an implant, filled with silicone or saline, into a pocket behind your breast muscle or the breast tissue.
Breast implants differ from breast augmentation with fat transfers. And in some ways, quite dramatically. Since the implant is inert and unchanged by the body, it is far easier to determine the size of the post-procedural breast. Secondly, since it is a foreign object, they might occasionally require replacement over time. Lastly, breast implants provide a much more significant enhancement to the breast.
Breast implants are available in a wide range of shapes and sizes, allowing Dr. Bray flexible options to achieve each patients’ particular goals. Although some patients seek larger, “Miami-style” breast implants, Dr. Bray typically avoids these. The larger the implant size the heavier it gets, increasing the risk of discomfort, skin stretch, rippling and other problems. Patients seek breast implant surgery with Dr. Bray due to his focus on tasteful, natural, well-proportioned results.
If you’re considering a breast augmentation procedure, we recommend scheduling a consultation with Dr. Bray. There, you will discuss your goals, and be made aware of any risks and complications.
Custom Options for Breast Implants
Types of breast implants
There are two options for the breast implant material: saline and silicone. Both have an inert silicone rubber outer shell, but saline implants are filled with a sterile saltwater solution. They are empty when first inserted, which allows for smaller incisions and the implant to be filled. Small adjustments can be made with the amount of saline, allowing Dr. Bray to correct for minor asymmetries between the breasts The benefits to saline implants are that they are less expensive than silicone, and provide easier detection of implant leaks or ruptures. A ruptured saline implant, while completely harmless, results in a rapid deflation of the implant and change in breast size. However, they are also more likely to show rippling and wrinkles and visible implant edges.
Silicone implants, also known as “cohesive gel”, or “gummy bear” implants, require a slightly longer incision and are more expensive than saline implants. A major benefit to these implants is that they look and feel more like real breast tissue and are by far the most popular choice. Although these implant ruptures are more difficult to detect, they are less likely to show wrinkles and ripples.
Breast implant size
When choosing the size of your implants, the most important aspect to consider is your body type. Dr. Bray’s goal is to create proportional, natural-looking breasts whose size and shape match the rest of your body.
Round implants come in four types, ranging from low to high projection. Higher projection makes the top of the breast appear more full but can also look less natural. Most women prefer implants with moderate projection, which strikes a good balance between increase in breast size while maintaining a natural shape. Dr. Bray will help advise you on implant type according to your anatomy and goals.
Breast implant placement
The two options for breast implant placement are submuscular placement, which is inside a pocket under the chest muscle. The other is a subglandular placement, directly behind the breast tissue and over the chest muscle. Dr. Bray most often uses a “dual-plane” position, where the implant is partially below the muscle and the remainder below the breast tissue.
Breast implant incision location
Dr. Bray almost always uses an inframammary incision located at the bottom of the breast. The incision placement is optimal for healing and hiding the scar. The location of the scar will always be discussed during your consultation.
Generally, Dr. Bray’s aim is to make the incisions in inconspicuous areas to minimize visibility and scarring. He will help you determine the appropriate incision location depending on your anatomy and desired outcome.
The Dr. Bray Difference
Dr. Bray has performed thousands of breast implants over 20 years, first working as a reconstructive surgeon in a hospital for cancer patients who had lost their breasts. His experience in implant insertion, removal, downsizing and fat transfer has provided him the tools and techniques to effectively improve patients’ bodies with natural-looking results.
Since Dr. Bray approaches all of his procedures holistically, he considers the patient’s proportions, and areas for improvement. This allows him to design and recommend procedures that not only enhance the body, but work with its natural contours.
Like all of Dr. Bray’s procedures, his goal is to create as natural looking a physique as possible – which is often why patients seek Dr. Bray. Although patients have different standards of what they deem as natural, the aim is to create a body that is proportional and youthful. That being said, Dr. Bray never performs over-sized, “Miami-style” breast implants.
By making breasts natural-looking, attention to detail is required. Breast implants are a very commodified procedure, available worldwide at a range of prices; however, patients should be aware that it is not so much the implant itself, but the subtleties that make the difference. Size, proportion, and shape all contribute to the outcome of the procedure. Sometimes, Dr. Bray will even insert fat into the breasts to camouflage ripples, if needed. An important aspect of breast implants is the healing process and scar. Because he spends extra time and effort ensuring the scar stays put, the implants are unlikely to shift down with gravity. Otherwise, the implants move downwards, and the scar moves upwards into the breast rather than the crease.
Placement of the implant varies from patient to patient. While some surgeons will only place the implant either under or above the muscle, Dr. Bray does not. In line with his holistic approach, he places it depending on various factors in the patient’s body. Women with larger, leaner muscles will have the implant placed over the muscle. This is to reduce the likelihood of muscles moving it out of place.
Preparing For a Breast Lift
Medical conditions, such as heart disease, hypertension, thyroid problems, diabetes or the regular use of certain medications might affect your surgery. If any of this applies to you, please consult with Dr. Bray first.
No smoking of any sort of nicotine, vape or marijuana products for approximately 6 weeks before your procedure. Continuing to do so might adversely affect your surgical outcome. We also advise not consuming alcohol at least a week prior to surgery.
Follow Dr. Bray’s instructions concerning diet, hygiene and medications. Before any kind of surgery, your stomach should be empty, which is why you should not eat or drink after midnight the day before the procedure.
Make sure to wear comfortable clothes and shoes to allow easier change of clothes before and after surgery. Please arrive without any jewelry, makeup and nail polish on the day of the procedure. If you wear contact lenses, please switch them out for glasses.
Plan enough time for your recovery. Taking a few days off from work will be essential. Patients usually require between 3 and 7 recovery days before returning to office-type work. Those with physically-demanding jobs will require more time, typically 2-3 weeks.
Ask someone to drive you to your appointment and pick you up after surgery. By law, you cannot drive after your surgical operations, thus you will need to arrange a ride home.
In line with COVID-19 regulations, we have reassessed our cleaning and sterilization protocols. Upon arrival in our office we conduct symptom screenings with a questionnaire and check our patients’ temperature. We also require mask wearing for our staff and patients. COVID-19 testing before surgical procedures is mandatory in order to protect our staff. Please inform yourself regarding testing centers in your area and arrange for testing prior to your surgery.
We require a number of lab tests, diagnostic tests and medical evaluations leading up to your surgery. The nature of these tests will vary according to the procedure, your age, health, history, and other key health factors. Make sure to run all the necessary blood work and receive clearance before any surgical procedure. Necessary testing may change based on procedure, age, health, history and other factors.
Two weeks before surgery
It’s of utmost importance to follow all of your surgeon’s instructions regarding diet, supplements and medications. Stop drinking alcohol and smoking of any kind. Avoid exposure to sick people and quit taking blood thinning medications, such as Aspirin, Ibuprofen and a number of supplements. Post-surgery preparations should be made, such as arranging transportation, getting time off from work, stocking up on food and anything else you will need post-surgery and making sure someone will stay with you during the first two days after the procedure.
Day before surgery
Figure out what you are going to wear, follow your surgeon’s instructions regarding pre-surgery fasting and any other preparation measures. Go to bed early and get well rested before your big day. We also recommend getting your house in order and buying ice packs to help with swelling after the surgery.
Post-Op and Aftercare for Breast Implants
Recovery after the surgery depends on various factors including previous exercise regimen, diet, and overall health. One of the most important factors, however, is how committed a patient is to Dr. Bray’s instructions. Dr. Bray is very involved in the post-operative care process. Patients will meet him regularly to discuss healing processes, check for complications, and remove sutures. Numbness and sensitivity around the breast and nipple area might occur for a period of time after surgery. Typically, patients can expect 6 weeks to heal.
After surgery your incision will be covered with a protective medical strip called Steri Strips. On top of the strips, Dr. Bray places a light adhesive, in conjunction with a surgical compression bra. All of this is to help minimize swelling and support healing. Upon waking, it is expected that patients feel groggy and sore. Once awake, patients are taken into a recovery room to be monitored until they are stable enough for discharge.
It is important to wear the support bra around the clock or according to Dr. Bray’s instructions. He provides his patients with medication to manage pain, as well as schedules follow-up meetings to evaluate the healing process.
Typically, acute pain subsides after the first few days, however, soreness and swelling are to be expected for approximately 4-6 weeks. Moreover, patients generally require 3 to 7 days of post-operative recovery, which is why it is important to take enough time off from work and make arrangements accordingly. This may increase depending on the labourious nature of the job. It is important to note that showering or exposing bandages to water for the first 48 hours may adversely affect the healing process; the same goes for using baths, hot tubs, and pools for the first 6 weeks. Strenuous activities that tighten chest muscles, or the lifting of heavy objects should be avoided for 4-6 weeks.
It may take up to one year for your scars to fully heal. Avoid sun exposure to your incisions and follow Dr. Bray’s instructions. If you’re experiencing any signs of infection, such as an increase in swelling, redness or warmth or develop a fever, you should contact Dr. Bray’s office.
Potential Complications with Breast Implants
Before your breast augmentation surgery you will be asked to sign a consent. This consent form is for ensuring that you understand how the procedure works and which potential risks and complications are involved.
Some risks include:
- Post-surgery bleeding
- Changes in nipple or breast sensation
- Formation of scar tissue in the area surrounding the implant
- Accumulation of fluid
- Hematoma formation
- Leaking or rupturing of the implant
- Long-term pain
- Excessive scarring
- Skin wrinkling and in some cases there might be the necessity of a revision surgery.
Keep in mind that longevity can be an issue sometimes. Overtime, the likelihood of needing a revision, removal, or replacement increases. A puncture or leakage isn’t a health risk, but it could require removal or replacement of the implant.
RECOMMENDED SURGERIES WITH BREAST IMPLANTS
Is breastfeeding possible with implants?
Yes, breastfeeding is usually still possible. It has also proven to be safe for the baby, as well as the mother. Make sure to discuss any breastfeeding plans with Dr. Bray as breast surgery of any type can potentially reduce the chances for successful breastfeeding.
Is there much scarring after breast implants?
Dr. Bray works to ensure there is as little scarring as possible, and the remaining scars are generally concealable. Scars will always be visible, pinkish-red in colour for the first few weeks to months after surgery. The scars, however, will mature and become pale, flat and less noticeable over 6 to 12 months.
Can I get implants and a breast lift at the same time?
Yes, you can get multiple procedures done during one surgery. Depending on the outcome you would like to achieve, Dr. Bray might recommend inserting an implant and getting a breast lift at the same time. For more information on breast lifts combined with implants please click.
Will my breast implants affect my physical functioning?
It is unlikely that implants will change your physical functioning long term. Once everything is properly healed, you should be able to resume any and all prior physical activities. Certain demanding upper-body activities, like competitive weightlifting or rowing, might require specific decisions in terms of implant size and placement, details that Dr. Bray will review with you during your consultation.
Will I need additional surgeries after the breast implant procedure?
In some cases, patients may request additional follow-up surgeries, such as breast lifts, to achieve the optimal result. Dr. Bray will review additional surgical options, should the patient require one. In case of complications, such as implant ruptures, additional surgical procedures may be necessary. It is important to remember that augmented breasts age like any other body part; therefore, some women might choose to correct age-related effects later on in life.
Should I wait until after I have children to get surgery?
There is no simple answer to this question, given the wide variety of family-planning and lifestyle choices between women. Many women choose to receive breast implants before starting a family, but Dr. Bray recommends postponing surgery if you are anticipating pregnancy in the near future. Often the breast changes due to pregnancy and breastfeeding are the stimulus for a woman to seek breast implants, in which case you should wait at least 6 months after completion of breastfeeding before proceeding with surgery. This waiting period allows the breasts to settle to their final size such that you and Dr. Bray can make an accurate assessment of the desired implant size and shape.
Is there a chance that breast augmentation will increase my risk of breast cancer?
It has been scientifically proven that implants do not increase the risk of breast cancer. Moreover, multiple studies have shown that implants do not delay the detection of breast cancer. It is also important to note that patients who do get breast cancer have the same chance of recovery as women without implants.
If I’ve had a breast reduction, can they just grow back rather than getting implants?
Usually, breast size reduction is permanent. However, there are rare cases when tissue can grow back due to breastfeeding, medications, pregnancy, weight gain or hormonal changes. Since this is uncommon, Dr. Bray advises seeking implants if you are looking to increase your breast size if you’ve had breast reduction.
Will I need my stitches removed?
The sutures are all below the skin surface and dissolve through the healing process, meaning you will not need any sutures removed.
When can I get back to work after surgery?
Patients can usually return to work after about 3 to 7 days with low physical demands, like office-type environments. More physical jobs, or those that involve lifting, climbing, or heavy physical activity will require longer, potentially 2-3 weeks.
How long before I can exercise after my surgery?
After about 4 to 6 weeks you should be able to resume most physical exercises. Activities that center on the pectoral muscles, like push-ups and bench presses, should be avoided for at least 6 weeks. Dr. Bray will advise you on return to exercise or demanding physical activity based on your healing progress and specific requirements.
*INDIVIDUAL RESULTS MAY VARY
Schedule a private consultation with Dr. Bray by submitting the form below or calling his offices directly at 416-323-1330.