Breast augmentation is one of the most consistently popular cosmetic surgery procedures performed today, and with good reason. Breast implants can create a sexy, curvy look that’s natural, flattering and feminine. Whether you’ve always felt self-conscious about your small breast size, or seen recent changes in your figure due to weight fluctuation or following pregnancy, breast augmentation can help you feel great about your body again.
Recognized as a breast augmentation specialist and one of the top cosmetic surgeons in the Mobile-Pensacola metro area, Dr. James Koehler is a board certified cosmetic surgeon serving patients from Gulfport to Gulf Shores and beyond. Dr. Koehler offers a wide range of plastic surgery procedures for both men and women, and is known for his caring commitment to a patient-first approach.
Are You a Candidate?
The best candidates for breast enlargement are women over the age of 18 who have concerns about the appearance of their breasts, whether related to size, asymmetry or other concerns that breast implants can help improve. It’s also important to be in good overall physical and mental health, and to have realistic expectations about your results.
While breast augmentation is ideal for increasing your cup size, breast implants will only add volume to your existing breasts, not affect their position or placement. Breast implants will not lift drooping breasts. Concerns over breasts that look too low on your torso or have a droopy, deflated appearance may require combining a breast lift with your implants for the best results. During your consultation, Dr. Koehler will go over all your options to help ensure that you’re a good candidate for breast enhancement before proceeding with surgery.
About Breast Augmentation
Breast augmentation enlarges the breasts through the use of saline or silicone breast implants. Breast implants can create subtle enhancement, deliver very dramatic results or give you any range of looks in between, depending on your personal goals.
Breast augmentation can be performed as a solo surgery, in combination with other breast enhancement surgery or as part of a mommy makeover. Dr. Koehler takes a customized approach to each patient in order to ensure the ideal combination of procedures to give you the results you hope for. There are several different choices that Dr. Koehler will discuss with you during your consultation.
Saline vs. Silicone Implants
Women have a choice between saline or silicone breast implants, and Dr. Koehler will discuss the pros and cons of each implant type so you can make the decision that’s right for you. Currently, saline implants are FDA approved for women 18 years of age or older and silicone implants are FDA approved for women 22 years of age or older.
Saline implants have been termed by many as the “safest” implant. The outside surface of this implant is made of solid silicone and the inside is filled with sterile salt water at the time of surgery. If the implants were to leak, your body would absorb the water and will cause you no harm. If a saline implant is leaking, it generally goes flat over several days. The implant shell would need to be removed and another implant placed.
Silicone implants are considered to be the most natural feeling implants. These implants have significant advantages for women with thin tissues, where a saline implant might ripple or feel very unnatural. In choosing a silicone implant, Dr. Koehler offers Silicone Gel Implants (FDA approved November 2006) and Form Stable Silicone Implants also termed “Gummy Bear Implants” (FDA approved in February 2013). Although the gummy bear implants are relatively new to the United States, they have been used in Europe since 1995 and in Canada since 2000. There are a number of profiles and shapes for both saline and silicone implants.
After reviewing your anatomy, Dr. Koehler can make recommendations based on the look you want and your individual body shape. If you decided to choose silicone implants, you should be aware that the FDA recommends (but does not require) that you obtain an MRI of your breasts 3 years after placement of your implants and every 2 years thereafter. You should know that insurance does not typically cover MRI imaging of breast implants.
Dr. Koehler can place the necessary surgical incisions in different locations, depending on your preference, anatomy, the implant type and your goals for surgery. Most commonly, Dr. Koehler prefers an inframammary incision for silicone implants, which can be hidden discreetly in the natural crease underneath the breast. For saline implants Dr. Koehler prefers to place the incision either in the armpit (transaxillary endoscopic approach) or in the inframammary crease. Other incision choices are offered and can be discussed further with Dr. Koehler during your consultation.
Size, Shape and Profile
Choosing implants that are the right size, shape and profile for you can feel intimidating, but Dr. Koehler’s expert advice can guide you to beautiful, natural-looking breast enhancement results. Please visit our photo gallery to see before and after breast augmentation pictures of real patients just like you. Dr. Koehler can explain more about the specific implant dimensions he recommends after learning more about your goals for surgery and evaluating your existing breast anatomy.
Breast Augmentation Costs
The price range for breast implants from our practice averages from $4,400 to $7,000, although this amount may vary depending on your specific goals and whether additional procedures are performed at the same time. Dr. Koehler and his staff are happy to answer any questions you may have about cosmetic surgery pricing and help you fully understand the costs associated with your breast augmentation.
What to Expect
Every procedure at Eastern Shore Cosmetic Surgery begins with a comprehensive consultation and physical evaluation with Dr. Koehler, at which time you’ll decide together what your next step should be. During your consultation, you’ll discuss decisions like the type of implant you should choose and what you can expect from your surgery and recovery.
To start your breast enlargement, Dr. Koehler will make a small incision, through which he can create a surgical pocket and properly place the implant. The implant may be situated between the muscle and the existing breast tissue, or below the muscle. Once the implant is centered and positioned correctly, Dr. Koehler will close and dress your incisions and you can begin your recovery.
Dr. Koehler performs breast augmentation as an outpatient procedure and patients can return home the same day as their surgery. Most people are able to return to regular activities within a week after surgery although you should plan on taking it easy for the first few weeks after your breast augmentation. Any initial discomfort can typically be managed with oral medication. Your dressings will be removed 7 to 10 days following surgery. Vigorous activity and exercise is safe approximately 6 weeks following surgery.
Risks and Complications
Although the risks associated with breast implants are typically minimal, Dr. Koehler will review this information with you so that you make an informed decision regarding treatment. Common complications include those that are typical for any surgery, such as infection or experiencing a negative reaction to anesthesia. Less often, patients may experience permanent changes in sensation or the excess development of scar tissue around the implant (capsular contracture). Dr. Koehler will go over all the risks and benefits with you before your surgery so you’re fully informed about what to expect.
Your New Look
Although you’ll notice an immediate change in your breast size following your surgery, your final results will initially be disguised by some swelling, and it will take several weeks to a few months for your implants to fully settle. Over time, well healed incisions should hardly visible, and you can expect to enjoy your new look for many years to come.