Diary of a breast augmentation
Sydney-based Make-up Artist and Hair Stylist, Jessica has been using her expertise to boost women’s confidence for over a decade. Little did I know, that she, herself, had developed low self-esteem as after breast-feeding her children she was left with a hollowed out chest. Who would have thought that this beautiful, willowy former model lacked confidence!
I suggested, that perhaps she should seek some advice in regards to a breast augmentation and recommended she have a consultation with cosmetic surgeon, Dr Anoop Rastogi who specializes in the procedure.
Here is her story (in her own words) on how she gained back her self-confidence and femininity…
I have always wanted to have boobs! I never really had much shape at all. Before I had my two beautiful boys, my cup size was a very small B.
When I fell pregnant for the first time, eight years ago, it was an amazing boost to my ego, because I got some much wanted shape to my all over frame.
Being pregnant made me feel feminine for the first time in my life.
I was lucky to have plenty of milk and chose to fully breast feed both boys, without supplementation.
I breast-fed my eldest son for 15 months and my second son for 12 months. Although I wouldn’t change a thing it definitely took a toll on my whole body, particularly my breasts.
Having gone from a full C cup whilst breast-feeding, to what I have now – a double A has made me very self-conscious about my breasts. I won’t leave the house without wearing a bra, not even to get the newspaper. Sometimes I will even wear a bra to bed, as I don’t feel comfortable.
My husband is a great support and says he doesn’t mind my breasts the way they are, but I do mind. I feel shapeless if I’m not wearing one of my many heavily padded bras.
Sometimes, I’ll try and make light of it by joking that I need bigger drawers to fit all of my bras in.
So after lots of research and sole searching I made the decision to have a breast augmentation, as I truly wanted to feel happy and confident about my body.
I also wanted my boys to see a happier, more confident mummy. I owe it to them to give them the best of myself.
1st Consultation with Dr. Anoop Rastogi
I was a little nervous going into Dr. Rastogi’s practice for the first time. However after walking in, the girls behind the desk, Becky and Virginia, warmly welcomed me and asked me to take a seat and fill out a patient information form.
I was then introduced to Helen who works alongside Dr. Rastogi, making sure his patients are in good health and understand everything that was filled out on the patient form.
I then watched a brief video of Dr. Rastogi, explaining the process of the surgery with before and after shots of his patients, which was great. Having him on the video was a clever idea, as it made me feel relaxed.
I then met Dr. Rastogi who was very engaging making me feel very positive about my decision to choose such an incredible Doctor.
After examining me and taking various measurements and looking at various implants I was undecided on which implant to choose so another appointment was scheduled.
I left feeling very confident to be in Dr Rastogi’s care.
At my second consultation Dr. Rastogi explained he wanted to ensure my muscle tissue and skin surrounding the muscle could handle the implant. He also wanted to have fresh eyes again, as I was undecided with the size of the implant.
In the end, we decided between a 230cc tear drop implant, which is a small implant and would bring me from my very small A to a middle B, or 275cc, which would make me a full B to a very small C.
We decided to order both implants and depending on how brave I was feeling on the day, we would go with either the smaller implant or the bigger one.
I left feeling very excited!
Day of Surgery
I didn’t sleep at all last night. I kept thinking about everything and the excitement and adrenalin just took over.
Upon arrival at the hospital I am taken to a bay where I have my blood pressure taken and all the boxes ticked, in terms of my overall health.
I then get to see Dr. Rastogi and meet the team behind the surgery. I am instantly at ease when I see him and he is so friendly and seems really happy and excited to be there.
Dr. Rastogi holds my hand the whole way, while talking to me, with a lovely smile until I am asleep.
The next thing I know, I am up and being walked over into a chair in recovery. I drink 3 bottles of water, as I’m so thirsty. I’m groggy from the anaesthetic, but feel normal…what just happened!
The first thing I notice is that I have absolutely no pain!!! My chest is a bit tight, like I’ve had a workout or something, but other than that…nothing. It must still be the effects of the anaesthetics that haven’t worn off, I think to myself.
Dr. Rastogi comes to see me and again holds my hand. Everything went really smoothly and he’s very happy with the result! He has a quick look and so do I…Oh my gosh…I have breasts and they are beautiful!
My husband picks me up and I literally walk out of the hospital at 12:30pm.
I’m in no pain…maybe the water was spiked with something? I can’t believe how easy and amazing that was!!!
Dr Anoop Rastogi answers some frequently asked questions in regards to breast augmentation.
Q. How does a woman prepare for this surgery, mentally and physically?
The best way for a woman to prepare for surgery physically, is to start with good nutrition. Ideally a diet full of fresh fruit, vegetables and high protein is recommended to promote healing.
It’s also important to avoid substances that can thin your blood such as Aspirin, Nurofen, Vitamin E capsules, St John’s Wort, Ginkgo Biloba, etc.
Although general fitness is important for health and well-being, gym junkies need to lay off any upper bodywork for two weeks prior to surgery so that pectoral muscles can relax.
Patients need to analyze their motivations and be in the right headspace before surgery. It’s imperative to have all the facts when making a decision about surgery so I recommend my patients do some background research so that they have a good understanding of their different options when they come for their consultations and can be confident with the decisions that we make together.
It’s a good idea for patients to attempt to gain a picture in their own mind of how they want to look, in terms of shape and size so that they can communicate this image with their Doctor.
Finally, research the Doctor. The Surgeon is the most important variable in your outcome, and each Surgeon achieves a different result aesthetically and has a different skill set.
Q. What is your preferred implant and shape? Why?
Each implant is chosen specifically to create the breast shape that the patient desires. Most commonly, I choose a tear drop implant because with the new P-ure (Polyurethane coated) implants, they allow me to create the most natural shaped breasts without fear of rotation (often the problem with older tear drop implants).
Q. There is a lot of controversy with implants. What type do you use and why?
The scientific literature overwhelmingly supports the benefits of Polyurethane implants, as do I. Capsular contracture and premature sag are the two most common complications associated with Breast Augmentation surgery and both of these complications are dramatically reduced with the use of Polyurethane implants.
Q. What is the downtime after surgery and what can’t you do?
Pain and downtime are both dramatically reduced with our rapid recovery technique. Patients are usually well enough to go out to dinner or off to the movies the following day after a procedure and usually only need a weekend to recover before returning to work.
The patient must avoid any heavy lifting and vigorous exercise for 6 weeks following surgery, to allow the implants time to fully stabilize into position.
Q. Where do you make the incision and why?
The incision is made in the infra mammary fold (i.e.) the crease underneath the breast. This allows for the greatest surgical accuracy and therefore the lowest rate of complications.
With careful suturing techniques the scar is barely visible at 12 months.
Q. Some women lose sensation in their nipples after breast surgery, what’s your experience with your patients?
Loss of sensation is a recognized complication of Breast Surgery, although with careful surgical techniques this is uncommon.
When the breast is operated on, the nerves can be stretched or injured causing a temporary concussion to the nerves (neurophraxia). This is quite common and explains the temporary numbness that patients may experience.
Q. Do you need to replace the implants over time?
It used to be thought that implants need to be replaced every 10 years; however this is no longer the case. In fact, modern studies show that the rate of complications rise the more times the breast is operated on. Therefore revision surgery should only be done if necessary.
Q. What is Capsular Contracture and what precautions do you take to reduce the risk?
When an implant is placed in the body, as a protective measure the body forms a layer of scar tissue like a plastic bag around the implant. Any stimulus irritating this plastic bag will cause it to contract and tighten around the implant creating hardness and distortion. This is called Capsular Contracture. In my practice, gentle (non traumatic) surgical technique and meticulous sterility have always ensured very low Capsular Contracture rates. The rate however has been dramatically reduced further due to the use of P-URE implants, which changes the scar tissue interaction on the surface of the implant and does not allow the typical plastic bag effect.
Q. Why did you choose that particular size, shape and placement on Jessica?
Jessica presented a series of unique challenges. She wanted breasts that were natural looking; an elegant size and more like that of a run way model than a swimsuit model.
On the other hand Jess was incredibly tall and thin, her ribs and sternum were visible through her skin making it difficult to hide an implant. Her cleavage was wide apart, her chest was broad, and her breasts were situated high on her torso.
To produce Jessica’s new breasts, the implant pocket was designed and then surgically sculpted very carefully. Her pectoral muscle was meticulously raised up along the edge of her sternum to produce a close natural cleavage.
A dual pocket was created in order to allow the implants to lie invisibly under muscle cover, in the cleavage and upper part of the breast where her tissues where thinnest. While at the same time allowing the lower part of the breast to expand free from the constraints of the muscle, so that they appeared full, relaxed and natural, like that of a real breast.
A P-ure coated teardrop implant was used to ensure a natural appearance. The dimensions were carefully chosen to cover the breadth of Jessica’s chest allowing a close cleavage and an outer curve that kissed the edge of her torso, while at the same time not sitting so high to cause an un natural bulge in her upper pole.
The P-ure implant was particularly important, firstly because it has the ability to stay in place precisely where I have positioned it and not allow the cleavage to drift apart and secondly to overcome the risk of rotation often associated with older tear drop (anatomical) implants.
For more details: www.rastogi.com.au
Dr Anoop Rastogi Fellow of the Australian College of Cosmetic Surgery. +61 2 9362 1426