what to expect after breast surgery

Breast augmentation has long been the most popular cosmetic surgery procedure with women in the UK, and in many other countries worldwide. Whether you are unhappy with your breasts post-pregnancy, have lost a lot of volume due to rapid weight loss, or feel unhappy with the natural size, shape or proportions of your breasts, then breast augmentation may be an option to consider.

Breast augmentation has the highest satisfaction rate of any cosmetic surgical procedure, and techniques today mean that the operation is now far more simple to perform, with less down time than in the past. That being said, it is still a surgical procedure and shouldn’t be taken lightly, so it’s important to be fully informed about what you can expect to experience after having implants.

While thousands of breast augmentations are performed every year, one thing many patients tell us they are worried about is what to expect after their procedure.

Of course, all of this information will be provided during your consultation with Dr Frati, however, for those considering breast augmentation who are worried about what will happen after the procedure, here’s some information about what you can expect.

General anaesthetic
Breast implant surgery is usually carried out under general anaesthetic. Not everyone is suitable for general anaesthetic and recovery from this can leave you feeling a bit groggy. With breast augmentation, you’ll usually be able to go home the same day, however, on some occasions, an overnight stay in hospital may be recommended. It’s advisable to have someone who can come and pick you up such as a friend or family member.

Time to heal
Breast augmentation is an operation and during the procedure an incision will be made in the skin. Although the cuts made are usually very discreet and small, you will need to allow your body time to heal in order for your scars to be minimal and to prevent any infections or complications, so take it easy and rest up.

You will have dressings on as with any wound, so make sure you follow the post-procedure advice given to you by your surgeon. Taking care of your dressing and incisions is vital!

You may feel more tired than usual but this is normal immediately after surgery: you’ve gone through a lot. Get plenty of rest and make sure you eat well and look after yourself.

Are they supposed to look like this?
Immediately after surgery your breasts can look or feel unnatural and they might feel firm and heavy. This is very normal as they take time to settle, even up to a few months – every person is different.

Get me to the lingerie store
You may be keen to buy some new underwear to show off your new breasts, however, for six weeks after surgery you’ll need to wear a sports or support bra, every day and night. Sometimes you will also need to wear a strap for a couple of days to stop the breasts from moving upwards. This can be slightly uncomfortable.

Getting back to normal life
While you may read in magazines about “lunchtime boob jobs” or people going back to work the next day, in reality it is much more advisable to take some time off work to allow your body to rest and heal. If you are able to take two weeks off work then that is ideal. You must remember to take things easy and gradually start to return to your normal activities over a period of four to six weeks.

If you exercise or go to the gym, it’s best to wait for four to eight weeks before you start working out again. It’s advisable not to schedule surgery when you have a busy or hectic schedule as trying to do too much too soon can compromise your recovery.

Everybody responds differently to surgery and everyone’s bodies heal in different ways. Don’t compare yourselves to others, just let your body heal in its own time and communicate with your surgeon if you have any concerns as being supported as you begin life with your new breasts is key.

Of course, the most important thing in minimising any post-procedure complications and having a smooth recovery is to do your research and make sure you are putting your body in the hands of an experienced, highly trained surgeon, who uses safe and tested implants.

Dr Riccardo Frati is a leading and fully qualified cosmetic surgeon who is registered with the General Medical Council (GMC) and is on the GMC specialist register for plastic surgery in the UK. Dr Frati specialises in breast augmentation and offers this treatment to his patients from his specialist clinics in Harley Street and Manchester. Dr Frati uses breast implants that are approved by the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) and the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

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