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Breast Implants


Selecting a Breast Implant

The following is a brief general overview of the decision making process for selecting a breast implant for cosmetic breast augmentation surgery.

Breast Implant Consultation

The choice of a breast implant can, and should, be tailored to each individual patient. Before the actual exam starts, it is extremely important that Long Beach Plastic Surgeon, Dr. Josh Waltzman speaks with each patient to determine their motivation for breast enhancement surgery and what look they are hoping to accomplish with surgery. It is at this point that Dr. Waltzman can assess if the patients goals are appropriate and realistic for what Dr. Waltzman can safely provide with breast augmentation. On occasion it can be helpful for the patient to bring photos of women with breasts they consider to be attractive and unattractive. It is relatively easy to make a breast augmentation look good at 1 week or 1 month; but the real question is how will it look at 3 years or 5 years? Waltzman Plastic Surgery in Long Beach, CA is dedicated to providing long lasting natural results.

Breast Implant Physical Exam

Dr. Waltzman’s assessment starts by performing a physical exam. Dr. Watlzman looks to see if the patient has one breast that is larger or different in shape than the other breast. Dr. Waltzman also looks for any chest wall asymmetries, and he evaluates their posture to see if they stand straight or if they hold one shoulder is lower than the other. All of these things can affect the choice and size of the implant. Next Dr. Waltzman examines the quality of the breast skin and the amount of tissue between the skin and the chest muscles. It is during this point that the breast is examined for any abnormalities such as concerning masses or nipple discharge.

Breast Implant Measurements

Next come the actual measurements. One of the most important measurements is the width of each breast. This measurement will in large part determine the “largest” implant that can be safely placed. Other important measurements include: the distance from the bony notch at the base of the neck to each nipple, the distance between the nipples, and the distance from each nipple to the fold beneath each breast. It is also important to evaluate where on the chest the breast is positioned. Some women have breasts that sit relatively high on their chest, and other women have breasts that sit lower on their chest.

Saline vs Silocone Breast Implants

It is now time to decide between saline vs silicone, textured or smooth, and round or shaped. Silicone implants are only FDA approved for women 22 years and older. It is most common to use a smooth round implant when placing the implant below the chest muscle. Shaped implants can be beneficial when a very natural look is desired, or when trying to minimize fullness in the upper portion of the breast. Dr. Waltzman works with all our patients to come up with a plan that both the patient and he feels good about prior to surgery.