Breast augmentation: costs, background & risks of an operation

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Breast enlargement: You should know about these methods and their risks!

More and more women want breast surgery - especially the number of very young women who want surgery is increasing rapidly. But in the end, not everyone gets the breast that they would like to have. Before breast augmentation, serious discussions take place in serious clinics to put the decision through its paces. Minors wishing to have breast surgery must submit a parental consent form. If you can not show any medical reasons, you have to pay for the breast augmentation with all subsequent procedures out of your own pocket.

Breast augmentation: no surgery without risk

Every woman must be aware that breast augmentation is an operation, usually under general anesthesia. Like any other procedure, it is connected with threats and also possible complications. For that reason, you should believe meticulously regarding whether the breast enlargement is really your wish or maybe rather that of the partner you want to do a favor.

Of course, there are also medical reasons for breast augmentation (medically, by the way, breast augmentation called). There are women whose breasts deviate from the ideal image, for example, because they are too small in relation to the stature of the woman or have an unsightly shape. Perhaps the breast also had to be removed after cancer. This can have severe emotional consequences. Therefore breast augmentation (or reconstruction) is taken in such cases most of the public health insurance.

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Note: No matter what reason you decide for breast augmentation: You definitely will find the right doctor!

Reasons and requirements for breast augmentation

Medical reasons for breast augmentation are rare. Usually, it is subjective aesthetic reasons to have the breasts enlarged: Large breasts are generally considered to be more attractive and more feminine. Women who are aiming for breast surgery hope to be happier with their bodies.

Since "breasts that are too small" are usually a subjective assessment, a serious doctor will have a detailed discussion with the woman before the operation. Here the motives are questioned, and the woman is informed about the course of the operation, the upcoming costs as well as the possible follow-up costs and possible risks.

Of course, besides the subjective reasons, there can also be medical reasons for breast enlargement:

(i)Shrunken breasts: That sounds strange at first. But there are women whose breasts are smaller after pregnancy or after breastfeeding than before, but with the same amount of skin and often changed shape. Of course, this can be a psychological burden for women.

(ii)Sagging breasts: With increasing age or with great weight loss, the breasts can sag and hang.

(iii)Asymmetrical breasts: one breast is significantly larger than the other. This can be a mental strain, but with a big difference, it can also be a physical problem. Leaning back can cause back pain.

(iv)The incorrect ratio of breast size to height/weight: there is the technical terms 'breast hypoplasia' and 'macromastia'. Both terms stand for a breast that is not only subjectively, but also objectively too small and can represent a severe psychological burden for the woman concerned.

(v)Congenital malformation of the breasts: If the breasts have a clearly wrong shape, for example tubular, this can also be a heavy burden for the woman concerned.

(vi)Missing breast tissue: If breast tissue has been removed due to breast cancer or an injury, or if the woman has always had too little breast tissue, a new breast can be "built-up".

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What are the requirements for breast surgery?

Young women, in particular, often run after a society's ideal of beauty. You must be informed by your doctor that breast augmentation surgery is only possible when you are fully grown. In addition, the parents (or other legal representatives) must give their written consent.

And even then you cannot operate immediately! After the explanatory talks, the doctor must rule out personal and psychological problems for the woman as a reason for breast enlargement. For example, a woman should not have breast surgery just because the partner would like it or because she feels compelled to do so for other reasons.

If there are medical reasons for breast surgery, or if the woman deliberately chooses to do so after the consultation, an appointment can be made for the operation. A prerequisite for the operation is that reasons against breast enlargement have been ruled out in advance.

What speaks against breast surgery?

Last but not least, physical reasons that speak against breast enlargement must also be excluded. For example, if the risk of breast cancer in a woman is increased, breast augmentation is generally not recommended. The breast implants make cancer diagnosis more difficult.

Existing diseases may also completely rule out breast augmentation or speak against the operation:
  • Acute infections
  • Poor wound healing
  • Coagulation disorders
  • Autoimmune diseases
  • Poor blood supply to the breast tissue

Breast augmentation - the cost

Breast augmentation surgery involves various costs. The pure procedure triggers prices of at least $ 4,000 euros. But breast augmentation is more than just surgery. Material, anesthetics, and follow-up treatment make the costs skyrocket up to $ 7,000 . In some cases, the bust should be tightened along with enhancement - this makes the whole treatment even more pricey.

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Who pays of breast enhancement? 

Whether you have to bear the costs on your own or whether the health insurance covers this depends on various factors:

If breast implants are utilized for medical reasons, for example, to recover the bust after cancer surgery, the statutory health insurance company will cover the costs of the breast surgery.

If you want breast augmentation for purely aesthetic reasons, you have to bear the costs yourself. Even if problems arise, as a result, you have to pay the costs yourself. You should be aware of this before embarking on the breast augmentation venture.

Before breast augmentation surgery can actually begin, it must be decided where the implant should sit (above or below the pectoral muscle), where the incision is to be made (armpit, nipple, under the breast) and what type of Breast implant to be used.

These things are not entirely up to you. For example, the size and shape of the breast in particular, but also the stature of the woman, influence whether the implant is inserted above or below the pectoral muscle.

Implant over the pectoral muscle

If the implant lies over the pectoral muscle, the breasts look more natural and do not appear unnaturally rigid. During exercise, implants above the pectoral muscle are less of an issue because the muscles can normally work without the implants moving. In addition, women who have an implant on the pectoral muscle report less pain after surgery than women with implants on the pectoral muscle. Last but not least, breasts with implants over the pectoral muscle lower more naturally with age.

However, there are also disadvantages: implants that lie above the pectoral muscle are more noticeable, especially in very slim women. They also make it difficult to examine the breast using an X-ray or ultrasound because they block the view of the tissue. When inserted, the mammary gland may be damaged so that the woman can no longer breastfeed

Implant  position


Implant under the pectoral muscle

If the implant lies under the pectoral muscle, it is optimally protected against slipping and damage. It does not show up and facilitates breast examinations. In addition, the breast is not damaged, so the woman can breastfeed a baby.

The problem with the implant under the pectoral muscle is that during the operation, the pectoral muscle has to be cut in several places in order to bring the implant in place. As a result, this can permanently affect the mobility of the arms.

How is the implant used?

In order to place the dental implant right into the breast, the skin and the fatty tissue are severed at a previously discussed and marked location, and the implant is pushed into the pocket created. Then the cut is sewn.

There are several places where the cut can be set:

Armpit: The armpit is quite confusing, but the three to six centimeter long cut is not visible here later. Even when the woman raises her arms, the scar is often not noticeable. However, the implant must be pushed into the correct place over a relatively long distance. In a few cases, this can lead to the breasts not being shaped evenly.

Areola: A cut at the areola can only be very small and is therefore only suitable if small implants are used or implants that are gradually filled later (saline implants). In addition, glandular tissue and nerves are injured, milk ducts can become infected during the healing process, and the operation is more complicated for the doctor. However, the scar on the areola is barely visible at the end.

Breast fold: The easiest and safest breast enlargement is through the breast fold. The cut is three to six centimeters long, and the scar is visible later when the woman is lying on her back or lifting her chest. In addition, the scars become thick and bulky in some cases - in most cases, the woman has to pay for follow-up treatment herself.

Implant passport

After breast enlargement surgery gets the woman an implant through. It contains information about the date of the breast augmentation, shape and size of the breast implants and which of the above surgical techniques was used.

The healing of the cuts is monitored in the clinic for a few days after breast augmentation. If drainage has been placed, i.e. a fine tube for draining wound fluid, it will be removed after one or two days. The doctor also checks the fit of the implants and examines the armpits and chest for swelling, bruising, abnormal sensations and skin discoloration.

Moving your arms in the first few days after breast augmentation can hurt. The breasts can pull and tighten. They are also swollen. Most complaints disappear after a few weeks.

The threads are pulled after ten to fourteen days if the threads are not self-dissolving. A special bra supports the breasts for at least six weeks to optimally cushion them and prevent complications. If the tension is too great, the seams could open again, for example. In order to support the healing process, you should not work hard for at least eight weeks after the operation.

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What can happen during the healing process?

Breast surgery usually runs without major problems or future negative consequences. However, the healing process requires a certain amount of patience, especially because the result can only really be seen at the end of this process. This can take a few months.

Rumors persisted for a long time that breast implants had to be replaced every ten years. But that's wrong: ideally, they can last a lifetime. It is different when there are problems and complications. Breast implants can break and flow into the tissue or slip. The implant can also be damaged by force (such as a blow, fall or accident). As a rule, however, a breast implant should last well for several decades. Damaged implants must, of course, be replaced.

Immediately after breast augmentation, bleeding, infection, dying tissue or wound healing disorders can negatively affect healing and the result. Further interventions may then be necessary. If the nipples had to be replaced for breast enlargement or if the incision was made in the areola, it may be that the woman can no longer breastfeed.

Breast surgery scars fade over time. However, the breast tissue is particularly prone to scar growth, so bulging scars can form. However, this is very rarely the case.

Most commonly, capsule formation occurs after breast augmentation. The body takes the implant as a foreign body and reacts to it by encapsulating it with connective tissue. Most of the time, this capsule is soft and doesn't cause any problems. But if it hardens or shrinks, it can cause pain, move the implant and deform the breast. Seldom is this encapsulation so serious that the implant has to be replaced? Encapsulation may also occur after replacement.

Permanent complications or the replacement of an implant necessitate new interventions, which are often associated with great costs if the first intervention had no medical reasons.

To prevent serious consequences, you should pay attention to whether the color, temperature, volume or shape of your breast change or whether it suddenly appears harder. Let the doctor clarify such abnormalities!

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