If you’re considering breast augmentation, you’re undoubtedly wondering what to expect. How long does the procedure take? How much time will you need to take off work? How much does it really hurt afterward?
Here is what you can expect before, during, and after your breast augmentation.
Before Your Breast Augmentation
The first step in your journey is scheduling a consultation with Dr. Ortiz. This is your chance to discuss your goals with the surgery and any concerns you have. Also discussed in this appointment are breast implant shape, types of breast implants, and incision placement.
You’ll also have the opportunity to “try on” different breast implant sizes and shapes with a special bra. This will help you choose the size and shape that best compliments your body and your lifestyle.
You’ll leave this appointment with a clear idea of what a breast augmentation will mean for you, as well as an accurate quote of the cost. (Note that breast augmentation is not covered by any insurance plan.)
If you decide to proceed with the surgery, you will have the opportunity to book your surgery appointment now. Alternatively, if you need more time, you can always call us to schedule your procedure. A deposit of 25% is due at the time of booking to secure your surgery date. The remainder of your balance is due no later than two weeks before your surgery. If you need financing, we accept Care Credit.
On the Day of Your Breast Augmentation
Your procedure will take place at North Raleigh Plastic Surgery. Please arrive at the time discussed with our patient coordinator. Refrain from eating or drinking 8 hours before your surgery to minimize the risk of regurgitation while you are under anesthesia. We recommend wearing a loose shirt that buttons or zips in the front.
Since you will be coming out of anesthesia, you will not be able to drive yourself home. Please arrange for transportation and, ideally, someone to stay with you for 24 hours following your surgery.
When you arrive, you’ll be “prepped.” This simply means that you’ll change into a hospital gown, Dr. Ortiz will make incision marks on your breasts, and we will clean your chest with antimicrobial soap to minimize the risk of infection. You will then be hooked up to several monitors so that we can keep an eye on your vital signs (blood pressure, heart rate, etc).
When it’s time to go into the surgical suite, you’ll be given two IV lines: one to ensure you remain hydrated and the other containing anesthesia. Our licensed anesthetist will administer and monitor these for the duration of the surgery. You will be under full anesthesia for this procedure.
Breast Augmentation Procedure Steps
Your breast augmentation will take approximately one-and-one-half hours. Here are the steps Dr. Ortiz and the North Raleigh Plastic Surgery team take to ensure great results:
- Once you are under anesthesia, Dr. Ortiz will make the incisions he previously marked.
- Depending on the implant placement you have chosen, he will make create a pocket behind the breast tissue or under the pectoral muscle. This is where the implant will be placed.
- The implant is placed. Silicone implants are already filled when they’re inserted, while saline implants are filled once the shell is placed in the pocket.
- Dr. Ortiz will check for symmetry and close the incisions. Once the incisions are closed, he will apply a dressing to protect the incision sites, keep the tissue and implant securely in place, and keep swelling at a minimum.
When you wake up from anesthesia, you will be placed in our recovery room where you will be monitored for one half hour to one hour. Since you will still be groggy from anesthesia and on pain medications, you must have another adult drive you home. We cannot allow patients to drive themselves home after a breast augmentation.
After Your Breast Augmentation
In the 24 hours after your breast augmentation, you will need to have another adult stay with you. Your breasts will be covered with gauze after the surgery and you will be sent home with a compression bra to wear as you heal.
You will be on narcotic pain medication (not dispensed or held by North Raleigh Plastic Surgery) for 2 days following the surgery. We recommend NSAIDs like Advil, Motrin, or Aleve for any pain after the initial 48 hours post-op. You will be able to drive once you have stopped taking narcotics and most patients can return to work in 2-3 days.
You will wear compression garments for 6 weeks and you should avoid strenuous activity and exercise for the same length of time. During recovery, you should sleep on your back or side.
While complications from breast augmentation are rare, it’s important that you watch for signs of infection at the incision site, excessive bleeding, or worsening pain. If you experience any of these, call us at (919) 532-2270 or 911.