Choosing Breast Implant Size

Breast enlargement or augmentation mammaplasty allows women to surgically increase their breast size. During consultations in my office, one important question to consider is size. Sometimes patients are shy about revealing the size they want to be. I feel that the patient’s choice deserves honest consideration.  

“What implant size will be used?”   This is a very personal choice. I believe a woman should  choose implant size for herself, within the physical limitations of her own stature. Many patients want a modest increase in size or choose to restore breast size that has diminished after nursing and pregnancy. When the breast tissue is too tight to accommodate a larger implant, the desired size cannot be realized immediately. An interim step to stretch the breast tissue may be considered in these cases.

A broad range of implant “sizers” are provided during consultation to approximate the patient’s choice for new breast size. Patients often choose more than one sizing appointment to determine 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) in approximately 25ml increments. The visual experience of  seeing themselves in  a mirror with the sizing implants positioned beneath their bra and/or clothing is helpful in choosing the appropriate implant. That being said, many patients express a desire to be larger after surgery. Some patients increase their implant size at a second surgery. Very few patients choose to decrease the size of implants, but it is certainly not common.  I ultimately want my patients to be happy with their personal decision.

Breast enlargement remains one of the most popular procedures, out of all requested cosmetic surgeries that I perform. According to  The American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), more than 290,000 women selected this surgery last year. Many of my patients report they experience an increase in their self-esteem and satisfaction of body image following breast augmentation surgery, regardless of the size of implant they have chosen.

Photo: Courtesy Victoria Secret image

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