At Bella Cosmetic Surgery in Maryland, breast augmentation is one of the most popular cosmetic procedures. Breast augmentation can transform your figure, giving you a new, fresh look or restoring a youthful appearance when age or pregnancy cause unwanted changes.
Dr. Michael Chiaramonte is our board-certified plastic surgeon whose goal is to provide you with quality care and individualized attention. Beginning with your consultation, Dr. Chiaramonte listens and learns about your ideal body image, so he can use his extensive experience and knowledge to achieve your unique goals.
If you’re interested in learning more about breast augmentation, contact our office today at 301-567-6767 to schedule your consultation. Bella Cosmetic Surgery serves patients in the National Harbor area of Maryland, as well as in Northern Virginia and Washington, D.C.
- Breast Augmentation Benefits
- Am I a Candidate for Breast Augmentation?
- Customizing Your Breast Augmentation
- Types of Breast Implant Incisions
- Breast Implant Placement
- Breast Augmentation Procedure
- Recovery from Breast Augmentation
- Breast Implant Revision
- Financing Your Breast Augmentation
- Contact Our Experienced Breast Augmentation Surgeon Today
A desire for better cleavage, fuller breasts, increased self-confidence, and feeling great in figure-flattering clothing are some of the reasons women choose to have their breasts augmented. If you’re unhappy with the size or shape of your breasts, Dr. Chiaramonte and our caring, committed staff will respect your choices and goals as we guide you through the process to achieve your desired results. Breast augmentation benefits patients by addressing the following concerns:
- Decrease in breast size and volume due to significant weight loss
- Age-related changes in breast size and volume
- Unflattering breast shape and size due to genetics
- Asymmetrical or abnormally developed breasts
- Feeling self-conscious due to the appearance of your breasts
- Pregnancy-related changes to the breasts including lost volume, loose skin, flattening, and asymmetry
Breast augmentation is a great procedure for many women looking to enhance or improve the shape of their breasts. A consultation with Dr. Chiaramonte is the best way to find out if you are a candidate for breast augmentation. You and Dr. Chiaramonte will discuss your goals, medical history, and lifestyle. With that information and a physical evaluation, he can help you determine if breast augmentation is right for you.
In general, age, overall physical health, and pregnancy all factor in to your candidacy for breast augmentation. To be an ideal candidate for this procedure, you must:
- Be in good physical health and near your ideal weight
- Not be pregnant or breastfeeding
- Have breasts that are fully developed
- Have enough natural breast tissue to cover the implant
- Have not been diagnosed with cancer or a pre-cancerous condition for which you have not received adequate treatment
- Have no autoimmune disorders
- Be at least 18 years old for saline implants and 22 years old for silicone implants
- Be a non-smoker or willing to cease nicotine usage before surgery and throughout your recovery
Timing is another factor to consider with a breast augmentation procedure. If you’re planning on becoming pregnant in the near future, it is advised to postpone your breast augmentation until after you’re finished having children. Undergoing breast augmentation before becoming pregnant generally doesn’t impact your ability to breastfeed and nurture your baby just like women without implants. As a result, it’s quite common for women who are years away from having children to get breast augmentation. However, the changes to your breasts that occur during pregnancy can potentially have a negative impact on your results, so you may want to consider waiting if your family plans are imminent.
If you are a good candidate, the next step is to choose the best shape, type, and size of implant for your body and lifestyle. Making these choices can be fun and overwhelming at the same time, but rest assured that Dr. Chiaramonte will address all of your questions and provide professional recommendations based on his knowledge and experience.
Breast Implant Options
Breast implant selection starts with choosing the type of implant that will give you the look and feel you want. Our board-certified plastic surgeon has decades of experience with breast augmentation and understands how to achieve a range of aesthetically pleasing results using different types of implants.
We offer three options in order to meet our patients’ goals. The three types of breast implants we offer are:
- Saline: This type of implant consists of a silicone shell that is inserted and then filled with a salt-water solution to achieve the desired volume. Saline is similar in composition to human body fluids and is non-toxic. Saline implants require a smaller incision than other implant types, but are not recommended for women with small frames or minimal natural breast tissue.
- Silicone: Silicone implants are made of a gel-like substance which closely mimics the look and feel of natural breast tissue. These implants are available in a range of sizes and are the most popular option we offer.
- Gummy Bear: This implant consists of a highly cohesive gel made from a molecularly cross-bonded adhesive silicone gel. While they do require a slightly larger incision and may feel more firm to the touch, these implants replicate natural breast contours as they have a “tear drop” shape.
At your preliminary consultation, the pros and cons of each breast implant option will be discussed with you, and you can view before & after photos of Dr. Chiaramonte’s patients, to see which type of implant provides the results you want. In addition, Dr. Chiaramonte’s experience and commitment to patient safety will guide his recommendations for you.
Sizing Your Implants
As you know from buying bras, cup sizes are somewhat arbitrary, which is why implants are measured by volume in cubic centimeters. Having an idea of your desired cup size can provide a starting place for sizing, but the real decision making will happen through trying various sizers and factoring in your chest size and skin elasticity. Dr. Chiaramonte will also ask about your lifestyle, as larger implants may not be ideal for highly athletic and active women.
Selecting a Shape
Natural breasts come in many shapes, and implants can achieve a variety of aesthetics. In terms of shape, you can choose between round and teardrop-shaped implants.
- Round – Round implants provide a spherical shape which many women like for ample cleavage. This shape of implant is slightly less prone to complications. For instance, if they rotate, there won’t be a visible change in the appearance of your breast.
- Teardrop – Teardrop-shaped implants are fuller at the bottom of the implant. They will need to be surgically repositioned if they rotate, but are quite popular for attaining a natural-looking breast contour.
Your anatomy, choice of implant material, and goals for the procedure must be considered when selecting an incision type. Dr. Chiaramonte will discuss the three incision options with you and recommend the best one for you:
- Inframammary: The inframammary incision is made in the folded crease below your breast. This type of incision provides ample access to your pectoral muscle and tissue during the procedure. It is typically used for larger implants and for silicone gel implants.
- Peri-areolar: This incision is made around your nipple, or areola. It can be an ideal option for use with both saline and silicone breast implants and for cases where nipple inversion is also an issue. This type of opening may also be used to make adjustments to existing implants or as an aid to additional procedures such as a breast lift.
- Transaxillary: This incision is made in your armpit. It allows implants to be placed endoscopically into the pocket underneath your pectoral muscle. This avoids any potential scarring on the breast itself, and the wound heals rapidly.
Choosing the right option for your breast implant placement really involves two choices: sub-glandular placement (over the chest muscle) or sub-muscular (under the chest muscle). You and Dr. Chiaramonte will determine the optimal placement of your implants based on your desired aesthetic outcome.
Sub-Glandular (over the muscle) Breast Implant Placement – With sub-glandular placement, your implant is positioned between the chest muscle and your breast tissue (beneath the glands). Implants placed over the muscle may be easier to see or feel beneath the skin.
Sub-glandular placement can have the following benefits:
- Faster recovery
- Greater lift
- More well-defined cleavage
- Greater ease of placement
Sub-Muscular (under the muscle) Breast Implant Placement – This placement positions the implant underneath the pectoralis major chest muscle. There may be a longer recovery from this placement than with sub-glandular implant placement.
Sub-muscular placement can have the following benefits:
- A more natural look
- Lower risk of capsular contracture (hardening of breast implant)
- Lower risk of rippling
- Better coverage of the implant, which is important for petite women who have very little natural breast tissue
- Easier mammographic breast imaging
The surgical process for breast augmentation is straightforward. First, you’ll be given anesthesia in the form of intravenous sedation or general anesthesia. Next, the incision is made, and the implant is placed. The final steps are to close your incisions with layered sutures in your breast tissue and to utilize an adhesive or surgical tape to close the skin.
After the procedure, your breasts will be wrapped in gauze and an elastic bandage to minimize swelling and support your breasts as they heal. Dr. Chiaramonte will go over post-surgery instructions and provide prescriptions for any medications necessary. In addition to following post-operative instructions for caring for the incision site and keeping your breasts supported, some activity restrictions apply.
Any pain you may have for the first few days is typically manageable with the prescribed medications. It may take a couple of weeks for swelling to subside, but the results of your breast augmentation will be noticeable immediately.
Dr. Chiaramonte recommends resuming light activity levels, such as walking, as soon as you feel up to it in order to facilitate blood flow and proper healing. You should be able to return to work within 1-2 weeks. Within approximately one month, you will be able to resume most normal activities, including most forms of exercise.
Over the next months, your incision lines will continue to fade. You will have follow up appointments with Dr. Chiaramonte throughout your recovery so he can monitor your healing and clear you for exercise and other activities.
Dr. Chiaramonte also performs breast augmentation revision procedures. Breast implants aren’t meant to last forever, so a revision is likely necessary after 10-15 years of having a breast augmentation.
A revision procedure allows you to choose a different breast size or shape if your taste or lifestyle has changed since your initial breast enlargement. In some cases, women choose to have a revision to refresh their appearance when age or weight fluctuations change the look of their existing implants. It is not uncommon for a woman to choose a revision along with a breast lift to regain a youthful silhouette.
A revision procedure may also be performed to correct an unwanted breast implant outcome, to upgrade existing breast implants, or to address a complication. Some common reasons for revision procedures include:
- Bottoming out
- Capsular contracture
- Removing and replacing a ruptured implant
- Aesthetically motivated change to the implant size or shape
- Changing from silicone to saline implants or vice versa
We understand that finances are a significant concern for many women considering breast augmentation. These concerns can make it tempting to choose a plastic surgeon based on cost, not credentials. However, your health and safety are too important to trust a surgeon based strictly on the advertised cost of a procedure.
We’ll work with you to find the right financing option for your needs. CareCredit and American Healthcare Lending both offer a range of options to help you afford your breast augmentation with our skilled and safety-oriented surgeon.
Breast enlargement costs vary from one surgeon or geographical location to the next. Our average breast augmentation fees typically fall within the range of $6,300 to $6,800. The final cost of your procedure may be higher or lower depending on several factors such as the type of breast implant you choose, the anesthesia used, and any additional treatments performed.
Dr. Chiaramonte is a reputable board-certified plastic surgeon who has extensive experience with all aspects of the breast augmentation procedure. As a talented surgeon with a refined ability to visualize each client’s goals for treatment, he consistently helps patients attain results they love.
If you are considering having breast augmentation surgery, please contact Bella Cosmetic Surgery today at 301-567-6767 to schedule your preliminary consultation. We proudly serve patients from Washington, D.C. and Maryland, as well as Alexandria and Fairfax, Virginia.