My roommate, Kelsi, who's also my childhood best friend, came with me to Dr. Kolker's office. After a few final checks, Dr. Kolker took more pictures, then marked up my nose. He said people generally puff up under anesthesia, and things can get distorted, so this, in his words, "helps keep him honest." A nurse led me into the OR, and the last thing I remember before going under was this feeling of deep gratitude and thanking everyone there for playing a part in helping me feel better about myself.
Having a breast lift is similar to resetting the clock for sagging. Your breasts will still undergo natural changes due to the aging process, although with proper care you should not experience your previous level of sagging for many years. However, it is important to understand that certain life events, such as future pregnancy or weight fluctuations can negatively affect your results. If you are planning to have more children or you would like to lose weight, it is best to achieve these milestones before having a breast lift.
The saline breast implant—filled with saline solution (biological-concentration salt water 0.90% w/v of NaCl, ca. 300 mOsm/L.)—was first manufactured by the Laboratoires Arion company, in France, and was introduced for use as a prosthetic medical device in 1964. The contemporary models of saline breast implant are manufactured with thicker, room-temperature vulcanized (RTV) shells made of a silicone elastomer. The study In vitro Deflation of Pre-filled Saline Breast Implants (2006) reported that the rates of deflation (filler leakage) of the pre-filled saline breast implant made it a second-choice prosthesis for corrective breast surgery. Nonetheless, in the 1990s, the saline breast implant was the prosthesis most common device used for breast augmentation surgery in the United States, because of the U.S. FDA's restriction against the implantation of silicone-filled breast implants outside of clinical studies. Saline breast implants have enjoyed little popularity in the rest of the world, possessing negligible market share.
The breast augmentation patient usually is a young woman whose personality profile indicates psychological distress about her personal appearance and her bodily self image, and a history of having endured criticism (teasing) about the aesthetics of her person. The studies Body Image Concerns of Breast Augmentation Patients (2003) and Body Dysmorphic Disorder and Cosmetic Surgery (2006) reported that the woman who underwent breast augmentation surgery also had undergone psychotherapy, suffered low self-esteem, presented frequent occurrences of psychological depression, had attempted suicide, and suffered body dysmorphia, a type of mental illness.
Dr. Kolker then laid out his surgical plan for me: He'd perform an open rhinoplasty, explaining that the difference between an open and closed procedure amounts to a small incision on the underside of the columella (that skinny strip of skin between the nostrils), which can be seen only from below and fades rapidly. Both procedures require incisions inside the nose, but an open rhinoplasty adds that small columellar incision.
Does the nipple/areola sit below the crease underneath my breast? One trait cosmetic surgeons frequently look for when evaluating a breast lift candidate is the position of the nipple/areola in relation to the inframammary fold, or crease beneath the breast. Try this test: slide a plain sheet of paper underneath your breast (no bra) so it sits against the breast crease. When looking in the mirror, do your nipples sit below the top edge of the paper? If so, this is a good indication that you have enough sagging to warrant a breast lift.
When compared to the results achieved with a silicone-gel breast implant, the saline implant can yield acceptable results, of increased breast-size, smoother hemisphere-contour, and realistic texture; yet, it is likelier to cause cosmetic problems, such as the rippling and the wrinkling of the breast-envelope skin, accelerated lower breast pole stretch, and technical problems, such as the presence of the implant being noticeable to the eye and to the touch. The occurrence of such cosmetic problems is likelier in the case of the woman with very little breast tissue, and in the case of the woman who requires post-mastectomy breast reconstruction; thus, the silicone-gel implant is the technically superior prosthetic device for breast augmentation, and for breast reconstruction. In the case of the woman with much breast tissue, for whom sub-muscular emplacement is the recommended surgical approach, saline breast implants can produce an aesthetic result much like that afforded by silicone breast implants, albeit with greater implant palpability.
Dr. Mess typically harvests fat from the abdomen through a tiny incision in the belly button using state-of-the-art cannulas specifically designed to create small particle size for greater accuracy and for maximal fat cell viability. If the patient does not have adequate abdominal fat she may harvest from the thighs, love handles or other sites. The fat will be placed in a centrifuge where the fat will be separated from fluids and non-essential elements. The fat will then be transferred to the recipient site using precisely placed injections on multiple plains to achieve the structure and look you desire. On the day of the procedure, donor and graft sites will be laid out and marked following the plan designed during your consultation. Dr. Mess uses markers to map the surgery and distinguish between donor and recipient sites.