Breast Surgery

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Breast Asymmetry and Developmental Issues

What is breast asymmetry? Breast asymmetry refers to a difference in the two breasts in form, position or volume. It is very rare for women to have perfectly symmetrical breasts, and is usually acceptable if minor. Major size or shape differences between the two breasts is more problematic.

Breast “developmental” problems arise when breasts fail to develop fully during puberty. Correcting breast asymmetry and developmental problems improves the overall appearance of your breasts, increasing self esteem and confidence.

The most common breast asymmetries/developmental problems are:

Constricted/Tuberous Breasts

breast asymmetryTuberous breast deformity is a relatively common developmental breast condition where the breast doesn’t develop normally during puberty. This results in breasts developing into unusual shapes and often differently from each other. In this condition the breasts typically develop in an abnormal “tuberous”shape; it is often narrow on the chest with a long, thin, tube-like shape, with excessively large areolae, and is a common cause of “droopy” breast in young woman. The modern term for this condition is “constricted” breast.

Please see Dr. Merten’s article for more information on this:
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What is Breast Asymmetry?

Breast asymmetry is defined as a difference between the two breasts of form, position or volume, and it affects more than half of all women.  Breasts can be different in shape and size for a variety of reasons. One breast may be noticeably larger than the other, the two breasts can be different shapes,  the nipples can misaligned, there may be inconsistent breast tissue throughout the breast, or the areola are not in proportion with the rest of the breast. The range of deformity can vary from very mild to severe.

Breast asymmetry surgery requires the surgeon to have specialised skills and a wealth of experienced across the spectrum of breast enhancement and reconstruction procedures. Asymmetry is not just about enlarging or reducing. It’s the fine art of symmetry, balance and creating two breasts that are the same.

Common Causes of Breast Asymmetry

  1. Young women may develop a ‘constricted’ or ‘tuberous’ breast shape during puberty that does not self correct over time. This is called a “developmental” cause of asymmetry, as it relates to pubertal development.
  2. Following pregnancy and breast feeding breasts may change dramatically and may not settle back to an even, balanced shape.
  3. Breast cancer surgery may affect the shape and symmetry.
  4. An imbalance may occur as the result of prior cosmetic breast surgery.
  5. Scoliosis or other curvature of the spine can affect asymmetry too.

So you don’t just want implants: What are your options to bring back the balance?

The experience and expertise of Pure Aesthetics’ specialist plastic surgeons is a necessity when correcting asymmetry, as more complex personal treatment planning than for any other breast surgery is essential.

There are five general options in cosmetic breast surgery for women experiencing breast asymmetry.

  • Single breast augmentation
    When both breasts are well-shaped, the smaller can be increased in size, by augmentation, to match the larger.
  • Double breast augmentation
    Breast augmentation using two different sized implants can correct asymmetry and provide an overall breast enlargement simultaneously.
  • Single breast reduction
    When both breasts are well-shaped, the larger can be reduced to match the smaller.
  • Reduction and augmentation
    In cases of extreme asymmetry, a breast reduction for the larger and a breast augmentation for the smaller will balance appearance.
  • Breast lift – A breast lift is suitable when individual breast volumes are similar, but there are significant differences in shape or nipple position.

Understandably, with the treatment options available for breast asymmetry it is imperative that you have confidence in your surgeon understanding your overall desired breast outcome. Consultations with the team at Pure Aesthetics are confidential, discreet, professional and empathetic to the fact that discussing asymmetry and revealing your breasts can be potentially embarrassing and awkward.

breast asymmetry 2

It is important, as with any cosmetic plastic surgery, to have healthy and realistic expectation. Breast asymmetries can be corrected to achieve a less noticeable difference and requires a skilled plastic surgeon. There is no one-size fits all approach, and each treatment plan requires a custom approach. Methods used to correct breast asymmetry and developmental problems include breast reduction, breast lift, breast augmentation or a combination of these, and may be on a single breast or both.

FAQ

How can this procedure help me?

Using various techniques, breast asymmetry can be reduced and made less noticeable. Benefits include:

  • Increased self esteem
  • Improved quality of life
  • Increased confidence in appearance, intimacy and general social situations
  • Reduced asymmetry between breasts, creating a more even appearance
  • Better fitting clothing

When should I consider getting my breast asymmetry corrected?

Breast asymmetry should be considered only once breast development is complete.

The Consultation Process: What to Expect

A consultation with one of Pure Aesthetics’ specialist plastic surgeons is the first step when you are considering surgery and will take approximately 45 minutes. You should frankly discuss your goals and expectations about looking and feeling better after surgery. You should always keep in mind that the desired result is improvement, not perfection.

During the consultation, your surgeon will ask you a variety of questions covering everything from your current health situation to details about the physical outcomes you desire. Be prepared to talk about current medications, allergies and any past or current medical treatments.

Your surgeon will customise your treatment plan to meet your unique needs. Correcting breast asymmetry requires more complex treatment planning, and a variety of techniques can be employed including breast augmentation, breast lift and breast reduction or a combination of them.

Your surgeon will closely go over all your options and his recommendations in great detail and work with you to achieve your goals. It is important to have healthy and realistic expectations.

He or she will also discuss the recovery process and any potential complications that could arise. At any time, you are encouraged to ask any questions that you may have.

A second consultation is then performed closer to the date of your surgery to ensure that you are satisfied with the choices that have been made.

Will I need to be hospitalised for the procedure?

Depending on your treatment plan, you may be required to have an overnight stay in hospital. All surgeries are performed in fully accredited facilities ensuring your safety.

What is recovery like?

Naturally you may feel “woozy” as the anaesthetic wears off. You may feel some soreness, swelling or discomfort, but this is quite natural. You may also feel tired after surgery, but this and the soreness is normal and will last only a short while.

Stitches used may be dissolving and these will not have to be removed. In the event that sutures need removal, this is done between one and three weeks after surgery. Some may require a tube used to help drain blood and bodily fluid for the first few days.

Results: What and When?

The goal of your surgery is to augment your breasts to reduce the asymmetry between your breasts.

Any breast surgery, you will get a good indication of the results after 6 weeks, with swelling fully subsiding after 3 months.

When can I resume day-to-day activities?

When to return to day-to-day activities must be a approached on a case by case basis. Strenuous activity should be avoided for 4 weeks. You can then gradually increase your activity and should be back to normal in 6 weeks.

What complications can arise from the procedure?

As with any surgical procedure, there are potential risks and complications. These include:

  • Infection
  • Bruising, bleeding, heamotoma formation
  • Scarring
  • Anaesthetic problems
  • Allergy
  • Deep Vein thrombosis
  • Pain

Risks and complications specific to correcting Breast Asymmetry vary depending on what procedures are being utilised.

Will this procedure leave scars?

Although scars are the inevitable result of any surgery, we make every effort to keep them as inconspicuous as possible. The scars fade over time and are located in such a way as to become less noticeable as they fade .

What else should I consider before having this surgery?

Correcting breast asymmetry is complex. It requires realistic expectations of the results that can be achieved. To understand what is reasonable to expect from the surgery, it is a good idea to look at before and after photos. This will give you a good perspective of what results other patients have achieved through our surgeons’ work.

Emotional stability is the primary factor to be considered before any aesthetic surgery is performed. It is mostly your mental attitude that determines a successful outcome. Correcting breast assymetery can improve your appearance and renew your self-confidence however the rest is entirely up to you.

Before deciding to have this procedure, you may want to consider your planning for the healing period. Will you need help or assistance from others? Also if you do encounter complications, it is a good idea to understand how they are typically handled so that you are fully prepared.

Any more questions?

Please feel free to contact us with any additional questions that you might have about this procedure. Our team will be happy to address any concerns that you may have.

Costs

Given the range of options that can be used to correct asymmetry, it is difficult to provide a price estimate. Consider that there will be a surgical, anesthetist and assistant fee as well as hospital fee if the procedure is not covered by private health insurance. Further, you may be able to claim some of the costs back from Medicare and your private health insurance.

For an accurate price, please contact us for your consultation today.