How to Choose Breast Implant Size

Augmentation mammaplasty or breast enlargement allows women to surgically increase their breast size. Breast implants are one option available to women for this purpose. According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), of the 14.6 million cosmetic plastic surgery procedures, performed in the United States in 2012, 286,000 women had breast enlargement surgery.

“What size of implant will be used?” This is a very personal choice, within the physical limitations of the patient’s own figure and stature. I strongly believe that breast size is a patient’s decision. Some patients only want a modest increase in size, but some want a more significant increase. Many women simply choose breast restoration following a change in fullness that has diminished after nursing, sometimes as part of a Mommy Makeover.

Wide ranges of implant sizers are provided during an office consultation. The sizers are used to approximate the patient’s range of choice for their new breast size.  Breast implants are measured in ml  or cubic centimeters and range from 100 ml to over 900ml (one measuring cup equals 238ml or one tablespoon equals 15ml). Size increases in approximately 25ml increments. The visual experience of  patients seeing themselves in  a mirror with the sizing implants positioned beneath their bra and/or clothing helps in choosing the appropriate implant size.

Patients often bring a spouse or a friend to help them decide. We encourage patients to take their time with this important decision and they often return several times before finally deciding on size.  Readers might remember that Melissa blogged that she wore her sizers at home and about for a few days before deciding. That being said, some patients express slight regret about not choosing a larger size implant following recovery. Several patients have decided later to increase their implant size and opt for a second surgery.  In my experience, only a few patients choose to decrease the size of implants. At any rate, it is a matter of personal choice.

Not surprisingly, women report that they experience an increase in their self-esteem and satisfaction of body image following breast augmentation surgery. Patients seeking breast restoration following pregnancy appreciate being able to return to their pre-baby figure. Click here to watch Jennifer’s story about choosing breast restoration for herself.

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