Breast enlargement – the essential info

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Consultant Mr Simon Mackey discusses some of the key points you should consider if you are planning breast enlargement (also known as “augmentation”). 

Pick up any glossy celebrity magazine these days and it seems someone somewhere is showcasing their new breasts. Whilst the majority of us are certainly not celebrities, there are many reasons why women are increasingly choosing this type of surgery and boosting self confidence and self esteem are high up the list.

Breast implant surgery also known as breast augmentation or enlargement is a very common procedure, carried out on around 30,000 patients each year in the UK. It is an operation where silicone or saline implants are used to make the breasts larger or to create a new shape.

This is generally done for cosmetic reasons where the patient is simply not happy with their natural breast size and shape, but it is also routinely done to reconstruct the breast after a mastectomy following breast cancer.

Many women feel self conscious of their breasts due to:

  • The size, shape or symmetry of their breasts
  • Breasts may have changed shape or size because of weight loss or through childbearing and breast feeding

So, before you embark on this type of surgery, what should you consider? Firstly, take your time to find the right surgeon and explain to them your expectations and the outcome you would like to achieve. You can take advantage of the KIMS free health consultation days which take place regularly throughout the year, or book a consultation directly with a specific consultant here at KIMS at a time convenient to you. You don’t need to be referred by your GP and your consultant will explain the procedure in full and also the potential risks, so you can make a fully informed decision.

Breast implants have a life expectancy of 10 to 15 years after which they may need to be replaced. There are commonly two types used here in the UK, silicone gel implants available as a liquid, gel or a solid form and saline, which are sterile salt water implants. There are different pros and cons to each type although silicone implants are more popular as they are softer and have a more natural feel. Silicone gel gives a firmer feel, but has the advantage of coming in more shapes and sizes and it is often advised for those having a breast reconstruction.

Before your operation and at your initial consultation, your consultant will go through your medical history with you and carry out a detailed assessment before you decide finally whether to proceed. If you are considering losing weight or having a baby, you will need to discuss this with the surgeon before.

You will have the opportunity of discussing all of the options with your consultant, who will guide you through the best size and type to suit you and your frame. Of course the final decision will be yours. So if you are thinking of transforming your breasts shape for whatever reason, email us at enquiries@kims.org.uk or call 01622 237 726.