Call it the Kardashian effect: Today, everyone wants to talk about butt lifts, injectables, implants, and of course, dermal fillers and Botox. There’s also a lot of discussion surrounding nonsurgical treatments to melt away or freeze off fat. But in an age when posting personal cosmetic treatments has become the norm, why isn’t anyone talking openly about breast augmentation?

Though doctors are witnessing a rise in patients’ requests for noninvasive aesthetic procedures, breast augmentations are still among the most popular surgical procedures. Over a quarter million breast augmentation surgeries were performed last year, according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons. That number is up by almost 30% since 2000, so it’s clear that women are still seeking bigger breasts. At the same time, however, we have also noticed an increase in women wanting smaller implant sizes (i.e., more C-cups than DD-cups). Throughout the United States, medium to full-size B cups are starting to trend as well. The desire for a more natural look is clearly driving this shift in preferences. At Aristocrat Plastic, more young women are requesting a subtle, rather than obvious, change in their breast size. New technology is also helping to facilitate this change. Today, patients have a number of different implant types to choose from


Quick recovery

While breast augmentation is considered to be a major surgery, under-the-muscle breast augmentation is minimally invasive and therefore does not require an extensive healing period. An experienced plastic surgeon can create a breast pocket for the implant with extreme precision, dramatically reducing post-surgical bruising, bleeding, pain and inflammation. Furthermore, under-the-muscle placement usually yields more natural results, particularly when working with gel implants.

Many patients report a reduced need for opioid painkillers after under-the-muscle breast augmentation. They also typically experience less scarring after healing is complete and rarely request revision surgery. As such, we strongly recommend under-the-muscle breast augmentation to the vast majority of our patients. There are, of course, some exceptions. Women who naturally have a substantial amount of breast tissue may experience better results with over-the-muscle implants, for instance.


To lift or not to lift, that is the question

For most patients, planning breast augmentation surgery is fairly straightforward. However, if you are older (over 40), have had multiple pregnancies, or have lost a significant amount of weight, you may need to plan for a breast lift as well.

If a patient has minimal breast sag and minimal excess (but good quality) skin, then implants alone can provide the lift needed without additional surgical lifting. This is particularly true when the implants are being placed below the muscle. If the patient has minimal sagging, then placing the implant under the breast will ensure perky, natural and firm results.

If the patient has poor skin quality, stretch marks, too much sagging skin, low-resting nipples, or there appears to be a disengagement between the skin, gland, and chest wall, then a lift is mandatory to achieve the best cosmetic outcome. While most women who fall into these categories are older, some young women do as well. As stated above, if you have had multiple pregnancies, chances are high that the repeated expansion and contraction of the breast tissue has resulted in loose skin, stretch marks, and the loss of breast volume (especially in the upper portion of the breast). Women under 40 who have lost a significant amount of weight also frequently struggle with flat, drooping breasts. If you have battled obesity in the past, you will almost certainly need a breast lift along with implants.

Mastopexy incisions vary based on certain variables. It is therefore important to have a detailed discussion concerning incisions during your consultation in order to ensure the best breast augmentation outcome. Understanding the relationship between the skin, the breast glands, the muscles, implants and chest wall is critical.

Some surgeons avoid combining breast lift and augmentation surgery owing to the added complexity this represents, but in the long run, mastopexy augmentation tends to be less stressful and more cost-effective. Combining breast lift and breast augmentation into one single procedure is easier for the patient and more likely to result in a successful outcome.

It’s important to understand that combined lift and augmentation surgery must be performed by a skilled, experienced surgeon. While combined lift and augmentation surgery has many benefits for the patient, it’s more challenging for the cosmetic surgeon. Lift and augmentation surgery requires extensive knowledge to complete correctly, otherwise, complications may arise during healing.

Combination of lift and augmentation is just as safe as single surgery

No surgery is without risk. With that being said, however, combining breast augmentation with a breast lift can be as safe as a single-procedure surgery, as cited by Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery.

Moreover, in addition to being able to address the various aesthetic issues described above, augmentation-mastopexy surgery confers a number of unique benefits. There are many reasons, both cosmetic and reconstructive, to combine these breast surgeries:

  • There is less scarring
  • There is less removal of skin
  • The implant helps fill out the breast and improves its overall appearance so that less lifting is needed
  • Combining surgeries is less expensive than having both surgeries separately
  • Combining surgeries can reduce overall recovery time


According to the study cited by PRS, risk levels are similar whether procedures are done alone or combined. The study also revealed that most patients prefer to have just one surgical procedure wherever possible. After all, each individual surgery carries with it a certain amount of inconvenience: Patients must book time off work, secure a caregiver to help them in the initial stages of recovery, and (if they have children) find someone to help out with childcare duties. Doing all of these things twice rather than once not only represents additional hassle, it also typically results in a number of additional expenses.


Natural look and active lifestyle

Today, a greater number of women wish to balance having a voluptuous figure with other considerations. While women are still undergoing breast augmentation in droves, we have noticed a strong focus on keeping healthy and active, too. As such, many women choose more modest implants so as not to impair their ability to exercise. While it’s possible to stay in shape after having large implants inserted, there’s no arguing the fact that heavy breasts make high-impact exercise more challenging.

Breast augmentation has always been popular, and most cosmetic surgeons foresee little change in this area, regardless of society’s shifting preferences. Women will always want to increase their self-confidence, improve their figures and proportions, and boost their body image.


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