Breast Enlargement Surgery

Breast enlargement surgery is the most common cosmetic surgery procedure in the United Kingdom.

This procedure increases breast size and improves the shape of the breasts too.

A breast enlargement surgery can increase self-confidence and enable you to wear your clothes with greater confidence, and it can even improve personal relationships where your breast size may be holding your self-confidence back.

Our Plastic surgery team are experts in breast enlargement surgery, breast enhancement and giving women the look that they want and the confidence they deserve.

Breast Enlargement Surgery Indications

You will have your own reasons for wanting a breast enlargement surgery. Here are some of the most common reasons that women choose breast enlargement surgery with our Plastic surgery team.

  • The breasts did not develop during puberty to the desired size.
  • The breasts are already good size, but a bigger size is desired
  • Pregnancy has left the breasts smaller and perhaps not the shape that they once were
  • Changes in weight have affected the size and shape of the breasts
  • Transgender patients who are seeking breast enlargement
  • Asymmetry between one breast and the other
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How a breast enlargement surgery is performed

A breast enlargement surgery is carried out under general anaesthetic and takes around one hour.

The most common incision site in which to place the implant is underneath the natural crease of your breast. This is not the only possible entry point though. They can also be placed through an incision around the areola or through the armpit. Your Plastic Surgeon will discuss these options with you at the consultation.

The Plastic Surgeon then makes space, a pocket, in the chest muscle where the implants will sit. They can be placed under the breast tissue or under the muscle. Again, the correct placement of your implants will be something that will be covered in your consultation. Sutures are then placed to close the incision site and a supportive dressing called a breast implant will be placed.

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Breast Enlargement Surgery Recovery

In most cases, this procedure is carried out as a day case, which means you can go home on the same day after a short recovery. You will need someone to accompany you home and be with you for the first night after the surgery. It is also possible to arrange an overnight stay in the hospital if you are alone. Upon discharge from the hospital, you will be given pain relief medication and a course of antibiotics. You will also have clear post-operative instructions, which you can refer to during your recovery.

At first, your breasts will feel sore and you may find it difficult to raise your arms above your head.  You may also feel quite tired for the first few days after the general anaesthetic. It is important to arrange some time off work, depending on the type of work that you do. Most patients will arrange one week off work.

You will notice some bruising and swelling after the surgery and the breasts may look bigger than you anticipated at this stage. This is normal and it will take several weeks for things to settle down.

It is important to ensure that you have a good quality sports bra after the surgery. This will give you very welcome support in the healing period. You should use the bra for at least one month, or until the Plastic Surgeon advises you otherwise.

You must avoid all strenuous exercise and heavy lifting for six weeks. You should also refrain from sporting activities and gym for the same period.

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Breast Implant Types

There are a number of factors that your Plastic Surgeon will take into account when discussing breast implant types and options with you. The great news is you do have a choice. The Plastic Surgeon will give you his advice based on your anatomy and your desired results.

You will see that at your consultation the Plastic Surgeon will talk in cubic centimetres when discussing breast implant sizes with you. Bra cup sizes are not a scientific measurement but of course we are mindful that this is what many patients understand when thinking about breast augmentation or breast enlargement operations and their desired result. You will hear the Plastic Surgeon talking about 250cc or 300cc when discussing the recommended implant size.

There are two types of breast implants too. The most popular are round breast implants but in some cases so-called “ anatomical” implants may be a better option for you.

Also, the incision sites for breast implants can also vary.  Perhaps the most common place for the incision is in the natural crease underneath the breast. Breast implants can also be placed through incisions in the armpit or the areola. Again, your Plastic Surgeon will discuss the most appropriate option with you and he will consider your preferences.

The profile and projection of your breast implants is also something that the Plastic Surgeon will discuss with you. Here you have a choice in terms of how much your implants project forward when you are standing. The choices are low profile, moderate profile, high profile or ultra-high profile.

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Mentor Breast Implants

Our Plastic Surgeons really like Mentor breast implants, but o course they are not the only ones. Mentor breast implants have a solid reputation for reliability and safety, with an excellent choice of implants to enable you to get the look you want.

Johnson and Johnson own Mentor breast implants. Mentor breast implants have an outer shell that is made of silicone gel. Inside the silicone breast implants, there is a cohesive gel that closely resembles natural breast tissue.

Mentor breast implants are also CE-approved.

Mentor breasts have been subject to rigorous studies. Over 200.000 patients have been enrolled in over 10 clinical studies, evaluating the safety and performance of their breast implants.

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Mentor Breast Implant Warranty

Perhaps one of the reasons so many women (and Plastic Surgeons) choose Mentor breast implants is their superb warranty.

Mentor breast implants come with a warranty that is guaranteed for your lifetime. After your surgery, you will automatically be enrolled in Mentor’s own promise protection plan. In the rare event that you have a rupture or deflation of the implant(s), you will receive from Mentor two replacement breast implants of the same style completely free of charge.

Also, if in the first ten years, you have an implant rupture, you will be eligible for a financial contribution of €1,000 towards your surgery costs.

You can find out more about Mentor breast implants and the product warranty by visiting the Mentor website here.

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Breast Implant Simulator

Mentor also have a unique tool that can show you how your breasts will look after surgery. Why not try their breast implant simulator tool and then download your results to take with you to the consultation with our Plastic Surgeons?

This tool is a great conversation starter and it gives the Plastic Surgeons a really good indication as to the look and style you really want just click here.

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Breast implants risks and complications

Most breast enlargement surgery procedures are carried out with no complications. Of course, all surgical procedures carry some element of risk, and although most patients do not experience them, you should make yourself aware of them so you can make an informed decision about breast implant surgery for you.

Bleeding

The risk of bleeding is less than 1 in 100. Should you experience bleeding around the implant space you may notice additional swelling of your breasts and they may feel quite tight. If it is found that you have a Haematoma ( a collection of blood ) then you may need to return to the operating theatre to have this drained. Although a further surgery is inconvenient and will most likely delay recovery, your implants should not be affected and you will go on to make a full recovery from this complication. Evidence does show that is you have suffered a haematoma then this does increase the risk of capsular contracture of the implants.

Infection

Infection is always a risk after any surgical procedure. Reassuringly, infection is a rare complication and thought to affect less than 1 in 1000 cases. There are some tell-tale signs of infection after breast enlargement surgery which you should look out for. These include:

  • Significant swelling of the breasts accompanied by increased pain and tenderness.
  • Your incision site becoming increasingly red
  • Discharge from the wound
  • Raised temperature.

It maybe that another course of antibiotics is all that is required. In rare cases you may need a further surgery to remove the breast implants. Should this happen you will need to wait for a period of three to six months before new implants can be placed again.

Difference in breast appearance

Most women have a natural asymmetry of the breasts. If you have one breast that is clearly larger than the other, this can be corrected by using different size implants. This will correct volume differences. You should be aware that after the breast have settled down , some weeks after the surgery, you may notice some element of asymmetry which may not be possible to change.

Stretch marks

If you choose quite large implants there is an increased risk of stretch marks. It is important to discuss this with your Plastic Surgeons if you your intention is to choose large breast implants.

Breast sagging over time

Once again, if you decide to choose large implants these will add weight to the breasts. Over time your breasts will naturally sag. If this happens you may need further surgery in the future as your breasts age and change shape.

Pregnancy and breast feeding

You will still be able to breast feed when you have breast implants. Pregnancy and breast feeding can have an affect on the appearance of the breasts and you may notice some changes. Again, in the future you may choose to have further surgery to your breasts to correct the effects of pregnancy and breast feeding.

Capsular contracture

In most women you undergo breast implant surgery the breasts feel soft and natural. In some cases a scar can form around the implant and you will feel that one, or both of the implants may feel unusually firm. You may also experience pain and tenderness. This could be a sign of capsular contracture and you will need to contact us to arrange to see the Plastic Surgeon. Although not all cases of capsular contracture require further surgery, if you have pain and discomfort and the breast shape has changed, you may need further surgery. This surgery can either just remove the capsule itself or remove the capsule together with replacement implants. This surgery will be performed under general anaesthetic and it will take around one hour. The chances of having to have further surgery is about 1 in 100 per year.

Changes in sensation

It is normal in the first weeks after surgery to feel some numbness in the breasts. Over the following weeks and months after the surgery this will settle. You may also notice that your nipples are particularly sensitive. Permanent numbness is rare, but a possibility. Changes in nipple sensation can also be permanent.

Breast rippling

If you have little breast tissue you may be able to feel the breast implant. You may also be able to see ripples in the implants. Normally these do not bother patients, but some conservative treatments are possible to reduce rippling if it becomes troublesome.

Breast implant failure

Rarely, breast implants can rupture. Where this happens the implant will need to be removed and replaced. Fortunately, breast implant manufacturers, such as Mentor breast implants, offer a warranty for such eventualities where they replace the breast implants themselves. It will mean a further surgery of course and an extended period of recovery.

Re-operation

Over time your breasts will change shape as you age. There may be a time in the future where you may wish to have further surgery to change the breast implants, or combine the surgery with other breast procedures such as a breast uplift surgery. Other factors which may lead you to decide to change your breast implants include, changes in weight and pregnancy.

Your breast enlargement surgery Journey

1. Step One

Everything starts with a simple phone call or website form enquiry. Our patient co-ordinators are on hand to give you all the information you need and then arrange a free consultation for you with one of the Plastic Surgeons. This stage enables you to find out the facts such as likely costs, what the surgery fees include, available dates for surgery, what aftercare is included etc.

2. Step Two

This is your consultation with the Plastic Surgeon. This is where you find out exactly what can be achieved for you. Here you will discuss implant types, sizes, your hopes and fears for the surgery. You also get to ask questions directly to the Plastic Surgeon and of course he will carry out an examination. At this stage you may also book your surgery or confirm a pre booked date. At this stage any pre operative checks will also be done, and any pre op tests needed will be arranged for you.

3. Step Three

This will be the day of your procedure. You will go to the hospital at the admission time and meet your Plastic Surgeon once again , together with his medical team. The Anaesthetist will come to see you before the procedure and discuss the anaesthetic with you. Then the nursing will take care of your right through the day to ensure a pleasant and smooth experience.

4. Step Four

This is the period of your aftercare. Your Plastic Surgeon will see you for follow up in the hospital and on video to ensure a smooth recovery. You will also have access to our patient care support team whenever you have any general questions. We want you to be totally supported after your surgery and pride ourselves in the aftercare and support we provide our patients.

How much does a Breast Enlargement cost?

The cost of your breast enlargement surgery will depend on the type of implants chosen and the length of stay in the hospital. After your consultation with the Plastic Surgeon we will tailor the price according to your specific requirements.

Consultations with our Plastic Surgeons are completely free of charge.

You also have the option to pay for your surgery on finance, and with flexible payment packages there is sure to be a package just right for you

We also accept all major credit and debit cards.

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    Have questions?
    Get answers.

    No doubt you will have many questions about breast enlargement surgery. Your Plastic Surgeon will be happy to answer any questions you have in your free consultation. However, we have listed the most common questions patients ask at the consultation. For ease of reference we have separated out the questions to, before surgery, the procedure itself and after the surgery.

    Should I have breast enlargement surgery?

    Breast enlargement surgery is a surgical procedure and all surgical procedures carry risk. You must be prepared to accept the risks of surgery to have a breast enlargement. Most patients do not experience risks and complications, but they are a fact of life when considering surgical procedures. However, if you have longed for larger and more shapelier breasts , you may decide that the risks and complications are worth accepting. At your consultation with the Plastic Surgeon he/she will explore the reasons you want breast enlargement surgery and he/she will help you come to an informed decision.

    Is my age a factor?

    You must be at least 18 years old to have Breast enlargement surgery with us. We will also assess your medical history and current state of health, no matter what your age. It is important that you are fit and well for the surgical procedure.

    How do I know I have the right Plastic Surgeon for me?

    All of our Surgeons are on the GMC Specialist register for Plastic Surgery. They also maintain good standing with the general medical council and all Surgeons carry their own medical indemnity insurance. Beyond the qualifications, experience and good standing, you need to feel confident and reassured in your choice of Surgeon. This will usually shine through at the consultation. It is important to go with your gut feeling that everything feels right. Your relationship with the surgeon is really important so that you can work together for the very best outcome.

    Will it be difficult to choose the right implants for me?

    Your Plastic Surgeon will work with you to ensure that the correct implants are chosen with you. This will be covered in detail at the consultation. He/she will want to know your hopes and desires for the surgery and of course, he/she will carry out an examination and advise you of the most suitable implants based on your anatomy and your goals.

    How can I pay for breast enlargement surgery?

    There are a number of ways that you can pay for the surgery

    • By bank transfer
    • Debit or credit card
    • By cash (limitations in one transaction, please enquire)
    • Finance from your own bank or through our finance provider
    • Finance from an online finance provider
    • By borrowing from friends or family and paying them back directly.

    If you need help with finance please contact us and we will be happy to help.

    How much is breast enlargement surgery?

    The cost of your surgery will depend on the type of implants chosen and the length and stay in the hospital. We will you an exact price when you have had your free consultation with the Surgeon. Our price will also be completely transparent, giving you a clear understanding of what is inclluded in the surgery price.

    How can I find out about the risks of breast enlargement surgery?

    Our website contains information about the potential risks and complications of breast enlargement surgery. It is really important that you understand the potential risk and complications of this procedure, however small. At your consultation the Plastic Surgeon will discuss the risks and complications with you, and you will have the opportunity to ask any questions relating to them directly with your surgeon.

    Will I need any pre op tests?

    You will require some basic testing such as MRSA screening and a Covid test. Depending on your medical history the Plastic Surgeon or the Anaesthetist may recommend other tests prior to the surgery. You will be informed at the consultation of any pre op tests that you need. Our team will arrange any required tests for you.

    Breast enlargement surgery: The procedure

    How is breast enlargement surgery performed?

    Your surgery will be performed under general anaesthetic and will take around one hour. A small incision is usually placed underneath the natural crease of the breast ( an incision in the armpit or around the nipple can also be used ) and the breast implants will be placed in front or behind the muscle and breast tissue. Your Surgeon will have discussed the exact placement with you at consultation, depending on your anatomy and the desired outcome. The wounds are closed with sutures, either dissolvable or removable.

    How long will I need to be in hospital?

    Breast enlargement surgery is usually a day case procedure, Typically you will be admitted in the morning and discharged after recovery in the afternoon. There are occasions where you may need an overnight stay, such as due to pre-existing medical conditions, or where you do not have friends or family to collect you from hospital. You cannot go home alone after the surgery. Our team will plan your procedure carefully taking into account your personal circumstances.

    What kind of anaesthetic is used?

    Breast enlargement surgery is performed under general anaesthetic which mean you will be asleep for the whole procedure. You will awake in the recovery room or your own room. You will then take a short period of recovery , usually two to three hours, before the medical team will discharge you. Because you have had a general anaesthetic someone will need to come to the hospital to collect you.

    Will the surgery be done in a private hospital?

    All procedures are carried out in a care quality commission registered private hospital.

    After breast enlargement surgery

    Will I have pain after breast enlargement surgery?

    It is normal to have some pain and discomfort after surgery. You will be provided with pain relief medication and a course of antibiotics on discharge from the hospital. We cannot know in advance what your response to pain will be. Most patients are able to tolerate any post-operative pain and discomfort with the prescribed medication.

    When can I have sex after breast enlargement surgery?

    It is important that you do not put pressure on the chest in the first few weeks after breast enlargement surgery. It will take time for the discomfort to settle and most patients are able to return to sexual activity at around six weeks. If you are in doubt please ask your Plastic Surgeon first.

    What should I wear after my surgery?

    You will need to wear a compression garment , after surgery. Your Plastic Surgeon will advise you how long to wear this for.

    What will the scar look like?

    Breast enlargement scars are neatly hidden either in the natural crease underneath the breast, around the areola of the nipple, or in the armpit. It is normal for the scars to look quite red in the beginning. Over the following twelve months, the scar will gradually fade.

    Are there any risks to breast enlargement surgery?

    All surgical procedures carry some element of risk. Most patients who undergo breast enlargement surgery do so without any complications. However, it is important that you familiarise yourself with the risks of breast enlargement surgery. At your consultation, the Plastic Surgeon will go through these with you and you will be required to sign a consent form which will also detail the risks and complications associated with the surgery. Our website also contains information and more detail about the risks of breast enlargement surgery.

    How long is the recovery process after breast enlargement surgery?

    Most patients recover from breast enlargement surgery within six weeks. Of course, not all patients heal at the same rate, therefore your recovery could be quicker, or maybe longer than the average healing time. You should allow one week off work after the surgery. If you job is faily active then you may wish to allow an extra week.

    Our Plastic Surgeons and Patient care support team will guide you through the recovery process. You can be assured that you will have ongoing advice and support when you need it.

    It is important that you allow sufficient time for recovery and you may want to look to your family or friends for help and support in the first weeks after surgery.

    Will I have aftercare included?

    We provide a comprehensive aftercare service which will include follow up appointments with your Plastic Surgeon. The follow up appointments maybe a combination of in hospital visits and video consultations. If you have any general queries after your surgery , our patient care support team are on hand to give you any help or advice that you need. We take aftercare very seriously.

    Do you offer teardrop implants?

    Yes, teardrop implants are available. If you would prefer teardrop implants please let the Plastic Surgeon know. In any event, the type of implants best suited for you will be a key topic of conversation at your consultation.

    Will I need to have the implants replaced in the future?

    You should expect to have further surgery at some time in the future. Most experts agree that around ten years is the usual time that many women consider replacing their implants. Of course, there are many women who have had their breast implants for much longer than that. However, you should appreciate that factors such as age, pregnancy and breast feeding, all have an impact on the breasts over time.

    I’ve heard of something called ALCL, what is this?

    ALCL is an abbreviation for Anaplastic large cell lymphoma. This is very rare cancerous tumour that can potentially grow around breast implants. The occurrence of ALCL affects is estimated at 1 in 24,000 breast implants (Source: Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) July 2018).

    This condition usually presents as a swelling around the breast implant. The average onset of ALCL is around 8 years.

    Should you experience an ALCL then the implant would need to be removed together with the capsule that sounds the implant.

    If at anytime in the future you are concerned about such an eventuality you see your GP at the first opportunity. He/she will refer you to the breast unit of your local hospital.

    When can I return to sun bed use after breast enlargement surgery?

    You should wait at least six weeks before using a sun bed again. We advise speaking with your Plastic Surgeon to make sure that everything has sufficiently healed before using sun beds. We advise using sun block on the scars for a period of 12 months after surgery. Exposing the scars to strong sunlight too soon after surgery can cause sub optimal scar healing.

    Can I go on holiday straight after surgery?

    Whilst the prospect of recovering in a sunny climate may seem appealing, there wont be much that you can do on a beach holiday. You cannot go swimming or expose the scars to the sun. Moreover, you cannot lift anything heavy in the first weeks, so lifting heavy cases would not be an option.

    Usually you are okay to fly at around two weeks but we advise being in the UK for at least one month in the vent that you need to come back to the hospital to see your Plastic Surgeon.

    When everything has settled down, you will be able to enjoy your new beach body of course!

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