How can one woman’s experience with breast augmentation help you prepare for surgery? Some women feel anxiety when thinking about pain during recovery and wonder how realistic their results will be. Studies show that knowing what to expect before breast surgery will lead to higher satisfaction with your results. In fact, according to the University of Basel, 96% of cosmetic surgery patients reported increased happiness and self-esteem after their procedure. The majority of the 4% who did not feel these benefits were shown to have unrealistic expectations heading into their procedure.
To give you an idea of what you can expect, we looked at one patient’s experience from the day of surgery to 6 weeks after. Lanegrabella, a RealSelf user, posted her experience on the website. Her surgery was performed in October 2018 by Dr. Constance Barone in San Antonio using IDEAL IMPLANT® Structured Breast Implants. Lanegrabella describes herself as 27 years old, 116 pounds, 5’2”, and a mom who breastfed three children.
Breast Surgery Recovery: Immediately Post-Op
Lanegrabella describes her state 15 hours after her plastic surgery.
“I don’t see many reviews for the IDEAL IMPLANTS, so I am adding my review. Right now I’m about 15 hours post op. I received 335 cc in my right breast and 350 cc in my left breast to correct some symmetry. As a point of reference, I started very deflated and flat chested after breastfeeding my wonderful babies. My surgery went quickly, and so far I love my surgeon and her team. They are so efficient and did a beautiful job. I’ve had the normal pain and [have been] nauseous, but I’ve already started to feel a little less pain and nausea. I hope it continues to improve from here.”
This experience is common. Most surgeries are finished in under one hour, patients are observed for a short time, then sent home the same day. As a patient, you should plan to have what you need in order to rest as soon as you get home from surgery. This may include food, water, compression garments, and prescriptions.
Breast Surgery Recovery: One Day Post-Op
One day after her breast augmentation Lanegrabella details her recovery.
“Today has been rough. I woke up in a lot of pain. I had my first post op appointment. My surgeon wants me to begin doing aggressive massage twice a day, and it hurts so bad. I feel like I have some uneven swelling. More swelling on the right side. They are so high and tight. It’s just been a very painful day. On a positive note I took a shower today.”
Every patient has a different experience with pain but knowing that you will most likely experience it in some capacity is important. Patients experience the most pain in the first few days after surgery and typically take pain medication to manage it. These first days of recovery can be difficult, but the benefits of breast implants are long lasting.
Lanegrabella also mentions her breast implants are “high and tight.” This “high and tight” feeling happens because the skin and muscles around the implants need to relax and stretch to accommodate the increase in volume. In the first few weeks after plastic surgery, you will notice your breast implants begin to drop down into their final position and fill out the bottom of the breast pocket. Surrounding muscles relax resulting in a more natural shape and a softer feel.
Breast Surgery Recovery: Four Days Post-Op
Almost one week after her surgery Lanegrabella states,
“Things are going well. I’m slowly getting into the swing of things again. I am able to do my breast massages without too much pain. I still have pain, but I’m only taking extra strength Tylenol twice a day. Boobs are still high and tight.”
How long after your surgery can you return to normal activities? The answer is different for every patient, however Lanegrabella’s experience is average. Between three and seven days post-op most patients are able to stop taking narcotics for pain management and can return to work and social activities. Exercising should still be avoided after a breast augmentation until you are cleared by your board-certified plastic surgeon.
Dr. Barone advised Lanegrabella to perform daily breast massage for several weeks after her surgery, which can help prevent capsular contracture. Capsular contracture happens when the capsule surrounding the breast implant begins to tighten and harden. In severe cases this condition requires reoperation. It is not known what causes capsular contracture, though there are some ways to help prevent it from happening. Daily breast massage can help but it is important to talk with your surgeon before beginning these massages. Some breast implants have higher rates of capsular contracture, so before you pick a breast implant for your surgery do some research about capsular contracture rates. To get started visit this page https://idealimplant.com/compare/.
Breast Surgery Recovery: Two Weeks Post-Op
Pain, swelling, and the “high and tight” feeling continues to improve. Lanegrabella describes what life is like two weeks after her plastic surgery.
“Things have been going well. I think some of the swelling has gone down, and my boobs now feel a lot softer to the touch. It’s nice to know that they will continue to get soft. My sister was impressed with how soft they are already (she got silicone implants four years ago). Pain is very minimal. To me it feels like my boobs felt in the early nursing days. A little sore. I keep thinking to myself, ‘I need to go pump.’ lol. I only need about one extra strength Tylenol a day, and some days I don’t even need any. Things started to get better around six days post op. The hardest part now is protecting them from my little ones. My one year old always wants to lay on them, and that’s not possible right now. I look forward to being able to pick him up again.
I’m still going bra free and doing my massages as per the doctors orders. I have my second follow up appointment in two days. I hope she says everything is going well.”
Breast Surgery Recovery: Six Weeks Post-Op
Six weeks after her breast augmentation Lanegrabella reports that she is feeling more and more like her normal self.
“Things are going well. I just have to remember to do my massages. I still have pain occasionally, but not most of the time. I’m still most comfortable when I’m sleeping on my back. It feels a little weird to sleep on my side. Could be because I’m not wearing a bra. They have dropped some, but I can’t wait until they have dropped a little more . . .”
At this point in recovery most women are cleared by their plastic surgeon to resume all normal activities including exercise. As in Lanegrabella’s experience, pain should be minimal six weeks out, but do not be surprised if you experience some lingering pain. If you feel a sudden increase in pain or other symptoms, do not hesitate to call your surgeon. Lanegrabella reports after over two months of healing, “I was having a lot of sudden pain in one my breasts. Dr. Barone let me come right in to examine the issue. It turned out that I had just pulled a muscle, but I really appreciate the way she handled the situation.”
Schedule Your Plastic Surgery With Dr. Barone Today
After almost four months with her breast implants Lanegrabella reports “All in all, I do really like them. I think they look amazing, and they’ve given me a lot of confidence.” If you are considering a breast enhancement visit Dr. Barone for a consultation. With over 25 years of experience in cosmetic surgery Dr. Barone has helped hundreds of women gain more confidence in their bodies. Dr. Barone is one of the exclusive plastic surgeons in the San Antonio area to offer the IDEAL IMPLANT Structured Breast Implant, and is an IDEAL IMPLANT Premier Surgeon. This new implant provides a natural look and feel, the safety of only saline inside, and some of the lowest rates of rupture and capsular contracture in any breast implant available today.
Considering breast implants in San Antonio? Contact Dr. Constance Barone today to discuss your options. Simply call 210-268-1596, or visit www.baroneplasticsurgery.com. Dr. Barone’s office is located at 9502 Huebner Road, Suite 202 San Antonio, TX 78240. Call today for more information on IDEAL IMPLANT® Structured Breast Implants.