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Breast Surgery FAQs

Following are the common questions about Breast Surgery:

  1. What is breast surgery?
  2. What are the different types of breast surgery?
  3. What are the reasons to undergo breast surgery?
  4. How much does breast lift surgery cost?
  5. Are all types of breast surgery covered under insurance?
  6. Is breast lift and augmentation the same?
  7. Who is the right candidate for breast lift/augmentation surgery?
  8. Does breast augmentation increase the risk of breast cancer?
  9. Who is not the right candidate for breast surgery?
  10. How long does it take to recover after breast surgery?
  11. What are the complications associated with breast surgeries?
  12. Will breast lift or augmentation leave scars?

Q. What is breast surgery?

A. Breast surgery is a procedure that modifies a man’s or woman’s breasts for a variety of reasons. In some cases, breast surgery is performed for cosmetic reasons, such as for the reconstruction of breasts to give them a more youthful appearance or increase their size. In other cases, breast surgery is also done for medical reasons, such as reducing the breast size to alleviate back pain or surgery to remove cancer.

Q. What are the different types of breast surgery?

A. The various types of breast surgery include-

  • Breast reduction surgery
  • Augmentation mammoplasty
  • Mastectomy
  • Lumpectomy
  • Breast-conserving surgery
  • Mastopexy or breast lift surgery
  • Surgery for breast abscess
  • Surgical breast biopsy
  • Microdochectomy

Each type of breast surgery is performed for different reasons, either medical or cosmetic.

Q. What are the reasons to undergo breast surgery?

A. There are both medical and cosmetic reasons for people to undergo breast surgery- Medical reasons can be-

  • Either a part or all of the breast tissues have cancerous growths.
  • If there are high chances of developing breast cancer.
  • If non-cancerous lumps are present that are harmful to health.
  • In case the large size of the breast is causing back pain or spine issues.

Cosmetic reasons can be-

  • If the breast has been removed due to cancer, breast reconstruction can be done to form them again.
  • When the woman wishes to increase the size of breasts.
  • When the large size of breast bothers the woman but doesn’t cause any medical concern.

Q. How much does breast lift surgery cost?

A. Breast surgery usually costs around Rs. 80,000 to Rs. 1,20,000 approximately. The exact cost of the treatment may vary based on the factors below-

  • The technique used for breast surgery
  • Reason for performing breast surgery
  • Whether breast size needs to be increased or decreased
  • Use of breast implants (if any)
  • Doctor’s consultation and operating fee
  • Diagnostic tests
  • Hospitalization charges
  • Risks and complications
  • Post-surgery care and follow-up consultations

All these factors are considered while calculating the final cost of breast lift surgery. During the consultation after diagnostic tests have been performed, the surgeon will give you an estimate of how much the entire treatment will cost.

Q. Are all types of breast surgery covered under insurance?

A. If breast surgery is being performed for medical reasons, the entire treatment expenses are covered under the health insurance policy. For instance, if breast reduction is being performed to help the patient get rid of physical pain and posture issues, the insurance company will give you the approval to cover the expenses.

However, if breast surgery is being performed for cosmetic reasons, the treatment cost will not be covered by insurance. That is why breast lift and augmentation surgeries are usually not covered by insurance providers.

Q. Is breast lift and augmentation the same?

A. No. Breast lift and augmentation are two slightly different procedures. Breast augmentation is a procedure whose main purpose is to increase breast volume with the help of silicone or saline implants. Unlike this, a breast lift focuses on lifting and restoring the perkiness of the breast.

Normally, a breast lift will be a good option for you if you lost considerable volume due to breastfeeding or aging factors. And you will be a good candidate for breast augmentation if you wish to increase the size of your breasts or wish to correct symmetry issues.

Q. Who is the right candidate for breast lift/augmentation surgery?

A. Whether you wish to undergo breast augmentation or breast lift surgery, you should be physically healthy and have a good understanding of how the treatment will change your appearance. The ideal candidate is someone who has had the desire to increase or enhance the shape and size of the breasts. Some other conditions that you must meet to undergo the procedure include-

  • The woman must not be pregnant or expecting to get pregnant in the near future.
  • The woman must not be breastfeeding.
  • The decision must be hers and not influenced by other people or factors.

Q. Does breast augmentation increase the risk of breast cancer?

A. Most women who wish to undergo breast surgery have this concern. Studies have shown that women who get the breast augmented through implants are not at higher risk of breast cancer. Along with that, breast augmentation also doesn’t delay the detection of breast cancer. So, instead of believing the myths, it will be better if you consult an expert surgeon and discuss these doubts and concerns with them.

Q. Who is not the right candidate for breast surgery?

A. Every type of breast surgery has some prerequisites when it comes to choosing the right candidate. But these conditions usually apply when cosmetic breast surgery is being performed. The conditions state that a person won’t be eligible to under breast surgery if he/she-

  • Is under the age of 18.
  • Is breastfeeding or pregnant.
  • Has an infection that can compromise the healing process.
  • Has unrealistic expectations from the procedure.
  • Doesn’t have proper knowledge about the procedure.

The plastic surgeon will have a detailed discussion about your aspirations and expectations from the procedure and then decide whether or not you are an appropriate candidate.

Q. How long does it take to recover after breast surgery?

A. Breast surgery is a major procedure whether you undergo breast lift, augmentation, reduction, or any other type. Hence, you will need around one month or so to recover completely after the procedure. The exact recovery time will be different for each patient depending on their healing abilities and the type of surgery performed. If you follow the doctor’s advice and follow his/her instructions carefully, you will be able to get back to your regular routine sooner than expected.

Q. What are the complications associated with breast surgeries?

A. Like any other major surgical procedure, breast surgery also has potential risks and complications. These complications involve-

  • Side effects from anesthesia
  • Bleeding during the procedure and afterward from the wound
  • Infection in the wound due to poor hygiene or contact with external contaminants
  • Changes in the nipple or breast sensation due to damage to some nerves
  • Scarring due to improper healing of the wounds
  • Pain for a week or so until the body starts to heal
  • Implant leakage or rupture if used
  • Need of revision surgery (in case the results are not the same as expected)

Q. Will breast lift or augmentation leave scars?

A. Scars are unwanted consequences of surgical procedures. So, if you are getting a breast lift or breast augmentation, it is apparent that the surgery will cause major/minor scarring. The extent of scarring will be different for each patient depending on the technique used, the surgeon’s skills, and what needs to be done to achieve the desired results.

In most surgical procedures, the recovery period plays a major role in determining how serious the scarring will be. Usually, plastic surgeons use minimally invasive techniques that reduce the chances of major scarring after the procedure.