With the amount of information about breast augmentation readily available online, it’s not surprising that women considering breast augmentation often arrive at my practice quite knowledgeable both about the procedure and breast implants. For example, plastic surgery patients from Modesto, San Ramon, and throughout the bay area often come to my Tracy practice already knowing what size implants they want. While it’s great to do research before the consultation, it’s very important to keep an open mind about the type of breast implants you’ll ultimately choose, as there are many factors to consider.
Instead of focusing on the choice of breast implants, I encourage patients to spend their time online researching plastic surgeons so they’re confident about the experience and training of the surgeon they ultimately choose. How do you do that? Here are a few tips:
Board-Certification Is a Must
If you start researching board certification, you’ll find a handful of official-sounding boards, so it’s important to know which certification matters most. In essence, it’s important to choose a plastic surgeon certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS). The reason is that ABPS-certified surgeons are required to have more years of training than is required by other boards, and they must complete rigorous, hand’s-on requirements to earn certification. You can check on a physician’s certification on the ABPS website.
In addition to checking certification, make sure to research the surgeon’s background in their field of practice. For example, I co-authored a book on breast augmentation titled, “Your Complete Guide to Breast Augmentation & Body Contouring” that can help you prepare for your consultation. Upon scheduling your consultation, you will be provided access to our HIPAA-compliant patient portal, TouchMD, which will provide additional information on all of the surgeries we offer.
What Else to Research
Once you’ve narrowed your search to board-certified plastic surgeons, it’s very useful to take a look at each doctor’s before-and-after photo galleries to see the types of results they’ve achieved for previous patients. I also encourage potential patients to look at each surgeon’s website to see what information is offered about the procedure itself. You can also look at websites such as RealSelf where specialists answer questions from readers about breast augmentation.
It’s great to jot down your questions before the consultation so you will remember everything you want to ask. It’s also helpful to bring “wish” photos to the consultation. These visuals can help you communicate to the surgeon the look you desire and will spark discussion about how your new breasts will fit into your lifestyle. For example, if you are athletic, being comfortable when you exercise is an important consideration. You should also communicate if you want your final results to attract a lot of attention or if you are looking for a more modest size increase.
What About Choosing Implants?
Patients sometimes come in saying they want a specific size of implant because they liked the results of a family member or friend who had the same implants. The problem is that each person’s body is unique, and what looks great on one woman may not be the best approach for your goals. The majority of women want results that look proportional to the rest of their bodies, and the best implant size and profile can only be determined after I examine a patient and recommend what I think will match her cosmetic goals.
At the consultation, we’ll also discuss other aspects of the surgery, such as where to make the incision and whether a patient wants the implant placed above or below the pectoral muscle. These choices can also be influenced by the shape, size, and type of implant chosen.
I perform hundreds of breast augmentation procedures each year and take pride in getting results that exceed my patients’ expectations. If you’re considering getting breast implants and want more information, contact us using the online form to request a consultation or give us a call at either (925) 967-2804 (San Ramon) or (209) 834-0626 (Tracy) to schedule an appointment.