Sarah Harris claims that her “Double D boob job” has ruined her life. The instance is yet another the Plastic Surgery Channel has covered where patients – especially young patients – have buyer’s remorse following breast augmentation surgery.
Board certified plastic surgeons discuss the story on the latest No Spin Live, giving advice to would-be patients on how to avoid this particular dilemma.
“Be Careful What You Wish For”
Many women who are considering breast augmentation may have certain expectations and desires when they first think on it. They may see a ravishing movie star with beautiful breasts, or just know a friend who has great breasts that they, too, would like to have. These initial thoughts will come to a head with modern surgical practices in plastic surgery offices where, hopefully, the surgeon will be heavily educating (or reeducating) the patient.
“Part of the take home message here is ‘be careful what you wish for’,” explains board certified plastic surgeon Dr. Bruce Van Natta of Indianapolis. “I think all of us here follow the idea that we really want to try and match implants to patients’ bodies. There’s a lot of pressure from people, and there’s a lot of competition. The reality is, there’s a price to be paid when you cross the line and exceed what the tissues are capable of supporting. Botched doesn’t just happen on the TV show, we see it in all of our offices on a daily basis.”
Dr. Van Natta is referring to the large amount of revision patients who are coming in to see surgeons after having either a botched breast augmentation, or one far larger than they had hoped for. In these situations, expert surgeons can only do the best that they can to revise a former procedure. Instead of playing catch-up or re-do, board certified plastic surgeons seek to educate their patients properly the first time. It’s all about a dialogue with the patient, as well as utilizing tools like 3D imaging to show potential results and explain why going bigger may ultimately come at a large price.
Patient Education is Critical
The patient education process in breast augmentation consultations is crucial to success. In fact, breast augmentation procedures are fairly straightforward for surgeons. Much of the deliberating and decision making happens during the consult, with the patient.
Modern advances have allowed for a greater than ever array of implants to choose from. These differing devices make breast augmentation even more unique to a patients body than before. Patients should not only listen to what their surgeon has to say, but take part in the conversation! This, of course, is after a patient having researched, vetted, and discovered if they fit well with a surgeon.
“She’s devastated, she’s horrified… Where was she when she was selecting her surgeon?” asks board certified plastic surgeon Dr. Caroline Glicksman of New Jersey. “Where was she when they were picking implants? It’s 2017, this shouldn’t happen anymore. Patients should be more informed, they’ve got internet access, they’ve got blogs, they’ve got RealSelf. They can make really good decisions. And, you know what? If the surgeon gives in to their whims, then the surgeon is to blame as well. It’s not just a one-side thing. It’s poor decisions made up front.”
Breast augmentation happens every day all over the world with many, many of the patients more satisfied with the results than they ever thought possible. The majority of these success cases came from in-depth and informed consultations between surgeon and patient, ironing out the details before ever setting an operation date.
The take-away? Patients should arm themselves with knowledge, find and vet an expert plastic surgeon who routinely performs breast augmentation, and listen and talk closely to the surgeon during the entire process. If these points are all met, tremendous results are waiting on the other side.