If you ask women who are considering breast augmentation, what their biggest fear is, they will almost all say, they don’t want to be too big. However, they want to be sure that if they’re going to get breast implants, the change will be worth the money. Basically, they want to see their “afters” before they commit to surgery. Well, with recent advances in technology, Dr. Bengtson says he can do that for patients!
“I used to think of breast augmentation as an event, but it really is a process,” says Brad Bengtson, MD, a board certified plastic surgeon in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The most important parts of the process are the assessment of the patient and breast implant selection. The Bengtson Center uses Vectra 3D imaging and it has transformed the entire assessment and consultation process!
Choices and Decisions
“Imaging allows us to show the patient their breasts in ways they have never seen them before!,” says Bengtson. The simulation is so incredibly accurate that it can show the patient how different types of implants will affect their result. Breast implants are not just round any more. There are shaped implants, like the Allergan style 410, or variations in implant technology and fill, like the new Inspira breast implant. With all these different choices, it’s important for patients to be able to visualize the difference their choices could make in their end result. Imaging makes the “after” result a reality at a critical decision making time for each patient.
The virtual reality of the after result that imaging provides is so accurate that when compared to the real “after” result one year after surgery it essentially “ghosts” the computer simulated image. This type of accuracy in imaging makes it an incredibly reliable and accurate tool for both patients and surgeons. Dr. Bengtson loves being able to tell patients, “that they can see their “afters”….. before surgery!”
Reconciling Wishes with Tissues
Visualizing outcomes is important to patients, however, it’s important to remember that surgeons must work with what the patient brings them to work with. “The biggest indication to the outcome is what the individual patient breasts look like before,” says Bengtson. In the past, looking at volumes of before and after photos never factored in the patient’s own body. Think of looking at before and afters like window shopping for your result whereas using 3D imaging allows you to design your result based on your own body.
“Life is all about expectations,” reminds Bengtson. “So the closer you can get to the actual expectation of not only size and look, but recovery and outcome, the better.” In the last 600 breast augmentation surgeries Dr. Bengtson has performed, he hasn’t done a single revision due to size exchange. Historically size exchange is the number one reason for re-operation. He attributes this reduction to the virtues of imaging and its ability to help prepare patients for their new reality. Reconciling reality with expectations is the key to fabulous results and happy patients!