While breasts do not make a woman, they are quintessential to her perception of femininity. Women may want shapely breasts that complement their other features.
Plastic surgeon Dr. Karen Leong in Newport Beach, CA, honed her breast augmentation techniques under excellent mentorship. She now practices aesthetic breast surgery that looks natural and organic and can help you choose implants that balance your body dimensions.
Learn More About Breast Augmentation
Breast augmentation is a popular procedure that is done to enlarge the breasts, create symmetry, and restore the natural look and shape of the breasts. Women may choose to have a breast augmentation for personal reasons or as part of reconstructive surgery following mastectomy or lumpectomy.
Breast size is a personal choice and Dr. Leong will work with you to find the implant that suits you best. However, it is just as critical not to select an implant that is too big as it can have short-term and long-term consequences that are harmful to the quality of your skin, as well as to the rib and skeletal structures. Selecting the wrong size also increases the risk of complications associated with breast implant surgery.
During your consultation, Dr. Leong will assess your concerns and questions at our Newport Beach facility and inform you of all the options available, while also customizing a surgical plan.
A breast enhancement procedure has many options. It can be done with breast implants or by a fat transfer.
Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation
We all have areas we’d like to be a little less shapely and some areas that could perhaps have a bit more volume. Fortunately, breast augmentation with fat transfer is able to solve this problem. We can remove stubborn pockets of fat from unwanted areas, such as the stomach, thighs, or butt, and relocate it to the breasts in order to give them a more desirable size and shape. This procedure is much less invasive than implants, which greatly reduces recovery time and scarring. Dr. Leong typically advises patients who are interested in fat transfer that she can only achieve about a cup size increase with this procedure.
Implants for augmentation come in an assortment of sizes and shapes — all of which are taken into consideration in order to reach the desired outcome. Today, the most commonly used implant types are saline or silicone (gummy bear), both widely chosen and approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). During your initial consultation with Dr. Leong, the correct implant will be selected based on your body frame, as well as your desired outcome.
It is important to mention that women considering implants made with saline must be 18 years of age, while patients must be a minimum of 22 years old in order to have silicone implants placed.
Dr. Leong is pleased to offer Ideal Implants, a new type of structured breast implant filled with saline but that feels like gel. Ideal Implants have both an inner and outer shell — both of which are filled with saline. Three baffle shells are between the inner and outer shells to control movement and provide a natural look and feel. Ask Dr. Leong about Ideal Implants during your initial consultation to see if they may be a good choice for your cosmetic goals.
Factors Considered To Determine the Type of Augmentation:
Implant size is distinguished based on the number of CCs of silicone or saline involved. To choose the right amount, Dr. Leong will measure how much original tissue exists and the size you hope to achieve. During surgery, it is common for Dr. Leong to temporarily switch out various implants to get an idea of a better fit.
Breast implants come in either a round or teardrop shape. Both shapes are commonly used; however, most of our patients choose a round implant. It often looks and feels more natural and adds a more desirable fullness to the top of the breasts.
A breast implant profile equates to the projection of the breast or how far you want the breast to stand out from a side view. The most common projections include low to extra high ranges.
These options may be overwhelming, but choosing the appropriate implant is easy once the patient’s requests are discussed during the consultation. These considerations, coupled with the guidance and experience of Dr. Leong, should ensure that the right outcome is met.
During breast augmentation, an incision is made, the predetermined pocket dissected and the appropriate implant inserted. Incision type, as well as implant pocket placement, are factors that are generally made ahead of surgery.
Incisions for breast augmentation are typically 1) hidden in the breast crease (inframammary), 2) along the lower border of the nipple areolar complex (periareolar), or 3) through the armpit (transaxillary). No matter where the incision is placed, scarring is usually minimal.
Dr. Leong puts breast implants either under the muscle (subpectoral) or on top of the muscle but under the fascia (subfascial). Both these pockets have been shown through extensive data and studies to reduce the risk of capsular contracture (scar hardening around the implant). Where to place the implant is based on a number of factors, but it is strongly influenced by your body type and how active you are.
Breast augmentation is performed as an outpatient surgery under general anesthesia. The chosen implant will be placed through the incision using a minimal touch technique and deposited into the surgically created pocket. Once the implant is in position, the incision is sutured closed.
All patients will be monitored in recovery before being discharged home. You will be sent home wearing a surgical bra to support the new implants. Within a few days, the bruising and swelling will slowly start to go away, and over the next 3-6 months, the breasts will soften as they settle into their new position. Most patients can resume most normal activities within a few days; however, exercise should be avoided for approximately 4-6 weeks. Chest exercises should preferably be avoided from this point on to prevent the implants from displacing laterally. Breast augmentation results look and feel both normal and natural. This procedure, in most cases, can be life-changing for many women, allowing them the chance to feel more comfortable in their own skin.
The choice to go through with breast augmentation surgery is a personal one. If you are thinking about having this procedure, it is important that you do it for yourself and nobody else. You should be healthy with breasts that are fully developed, and be the proper age to have implants. If you are dissatisfied with the aesthetics of your breasts because they seem small, flat, or asymmetric, then you may benefit from this cosmetic breast treatment. In addition, if your breasts have been affected by aging, nursing, or weight loss, this surgery can help make them perky again with increased volume, projection, and cleavage.
Your cost for breast augmentation will vary based on your implant choice and whether you are having any other surgeries at the same time. The average cost starts at $7,000. As soon as your treatment plan is determined during your consultation, Dr. Leong’s coordinator will talk to you about estimated costs and financing options. To ensure your results match your goals and last a long time, it’s important to focus on quality over costs.
Your plan may include breast augmentation, a lift, or both. A breast lift removes excess skin and may involve repositioning the areolas and/or nipples into a higher place on each breast. A breast augmentation addresses the size and shape of the breasts. During your consultation with Dr. Leong, she will listen to your needs and goals before explaining your treatment options. A combination of augmentation and lift are often a part of a mommy makeover to rejuvenate the breasts after pregnancy and breastfeeding.
If you want to breastfeed after breast augmentation, be sure to tell Dr. Leong during your consultation. It is possible to breastfeed after implants, but only with the right surgical technique and placement. Pregnancy and breastfeeding can alter your results, so it is best to wait until after you are done having children to have breast augmentation.
You may decide that you want to replace or remove your implants. If this happens, Dr. Leong can perform breast revision or explant surgery. During the revision surgery, your current implants can either be replaced with new implants or removed. If you choose to have your implants removed, you may need to have excess skin removed since larger implants can stretch your skin. If you have any questions or concerns after your surgery, schedule an appointment with Dr. Leong to discuss your options.
The FDA is investigating a link between implants and anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL). This is not breast cancer, but a cancer of the immune cells. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), implant-related ALCL is very rare and when caught early, it is easy to treat. Dr. Leong encourages all patients with implants to get regular screenings for breast cancer. You should contact her if you notice any concerning changes, such as swelling or pain.