Boston Plastic Surgeon Dr. Christopher Davidson answers your questions.

How long it will take for swelling to subside after breast augmentation surgery?

Although swelling after a breast augmentation can last for six months, generally most of the swelling has resolved after three or four weeks.  Typically, the breasts are the most swollen one week post-operatively and you can get a clearer sense of the ultimate result and size after 2 or 3 more weeks.

Also keep in mind that breast implants are typically “high” immediately post-operatively.  Implants almost always descend into the proper position with time.  On occasion I recommend implant massage.  Typically the implants are in excellent position within one month post-operatively, if not sooner.

I am trying to decide between 375 vs 400 CC implants.  Which one should I pick?

I always recommend that women try on implants within a bra.  Some women prefer to try on implants on multiple days and different clothing options.  Other women are quite decisive and are able to decide upon an implant size after a single visit.  Both are reasonable as long as you are comfortable and confident with the size that you have chosen.

My nipples are very sensitive after breast augmentation, is this normal?
Nipples can either increase or decrease in sensation after a breast augmentation.  When a peri-areolar incision is made to place the implants the nipples can lose sensation completely.  Nipples are often more sensitive immediately after breast augmentation surgery, especially after one has had “larger” implants placed.  Most of the time nipple sensitivity returns to normal after several weeks.

What is the largest breast implant size can I get? Are 650 CC implants too big?

The size of implant chosen depends upon many factors.  These factors include chest width, amount of preoperative breast tissue, the amount of excess skin, amount of breast sag/droop (ptosis) and patient preference.   In my practice, the ultimate size is chosen by the patient after a thorough discussion and “trying on” multiple implants within a sports bra.  A 650 cc implant may look “too big” on one woman and modest or even small on another woman.

Can I get a massage after breast augmentation?

I generally advise womean to wait one month prior to getting a back massage.  If you wish to get a massage in which you lie on your back, however, you could get a massage at any time post operatively.

Should I look for a doctor with board certification to do my breast augmentation? Or does it matter?

Any person who has graduated from medical school can legally perform a breast augmentation.  That being said, it is incredibly important to select a surgeon who is board certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery.  These doctors have undergone rigorous training including at least 3 years of general surgery training and 3 years of plastic surgery training. 

I have 350 cc implants but I want bigger.  Is revisional surgery the only option?

It is relatively straightforward to increase or decrease the size of your implants after you have already had a breast augmentation.  Dr. Davidson typically does this under local anesthesia after taking a pill to make you more relaxed.  Time out of work and recovery is minimal.  The reason for this is that the majority of the work (and resulting discomfort) is completed when the pectoralis major muscle is lifted off of the chest wall during the initial surgery.  We generally advise a woman to wait at least six months after her surgery prior to exchanging her implants.

Are 265 CC implants too small for me?

These implants are certainly at the smaller end of the implant spectrum however can lead to an absolutely beautiful result for many women depending on her frame, and preoperative breast appearance.  Ideal implant size can be best determined after a thorough discussion with Dr. Davidson.

Why does each company’s breast implant sizes differ? Will my breasts look different depending on which implants I select?

There are three companies which make breast implants.  They are Mentor, Sientra, and Allergan.  There are pros and cons to each particular implant that are typically discussed during a consultation with Dr. Davidson.  The particular volume differences between each manufacturer is not significant, however, and it is more important to choose an implant based upon other characteristics and variables associated with each implant.

How big are the 300 vs. 350 CC implants?

Women will often spend a great deal of time deciding between different sizes of implants.  I often advise that a difference of 25 cc is negligible.  However, 50 cc is in fact a noticeable difference.  I would advise that you to try on the different implants in a variety of clothing options so that you get the best sense of the size that you prefer.  Also keep in mind that one year post-operatively, a majority of women wish they had gone bigger!

My breasts are too close after breast augmentation, will they become more natural after swelling is gone?

It is important to realize that your breasts will be quite swollen after breast augmentation surgery.  This swelling takes many weeks to resolve.  Do not be too quick to judge your ultimate result.  That being said, it is important to keep in mind that breast implants are generally centered directly behind your nipples so how close the implants are will depend on the preoperative distance between your nipples and the size of implants chosen.