Breast Blog

Breast Implants, Week 1: Is This Normal?

Posted by on Feb 20, 2019 in breast-augmentation | 0 comments

When I call my breast augmentation patients the day after surgery or examine them at their first post-op visit, they want to know one thing: Is this normal?

They phrase that question in many different ways:

Is it normal for my implants to be so high?
Will my implants soften up and squish together?
Is it okay that one of my breasts is up higher than the other?
Is it too soon to be judging my final shape and size?
Did you give me the implant size I asked for? 

My answer to all of the above: Yes!

It’s way too soon to be evaluating breast implant size and position. When breast implants are placed beneath the pectoral muscle, the muscle presses the implant flat (like your hand could compress a sponge ball or a balloon) and the implant needs a place to go.

The implant’s space is limited on three sides – by the breastbone, the outside edges and the bottom of the breast – so it moves toward the area of least resistance: the collarbone and the armpit. That’s why your breasts are up “so high.”

One breast often heals at a different rate from the other, and one side might feel harder and be pressed up higher than the other.

Breast implants need time to “drop and fluff.” The term refers to what happens to your implants as your skin stretches and your muscles relax. The implants move downward and outward sloooowly – about 1 percent a day. Watching their progress is like watching your hair grow. You don’t see a difference in your hair growth daily, but all of a sudden you need a haircut. Watch our “drop and fluff” video.

It’ll be about six weeks before your breast implants even begin to settle down and take on a more natural shape. Your breasts will be close to 80 percent settled and softened at three months.

It’s best to wait at least eight weeks before making a major investment in new bras. It takes that long for your augmented breasts to begin to settle into their new size and shape. At that time, you will be able to more accurately determine your postoperative size and get a truer fit.

Read our blog: “What to Expect the First Week After Cosmetic Breast Surgery.”

Be patient after surgery. Think of it like those road signs you sometimes see: “Temporary inconvenience; permanent improvement.” Give yourself a few months to see the final result. The permanent improvement will be worth the wait! Till then, here are some comments from breast augmentation patients who have completed the journey:

  • “I used to hate lingerie and bathing suit shopping. Now I love it. In fact, all my old bathing suits looked brand new this summer.”
  • “I love my new figure. It is so nice to not have to worry about padding my bra anymore.”
  • “Now I can wear anything I want and feel comfortable, sexy and once again confident.”
  • “I look as good underneath my clothes as I do in them.”
  • “Friends know something is different about me but they can’t pinpoint what it is. They say things like, ‘You look great. Are you just back from vacation?’ or ‘That’s a cute outfit. Is it new?’ I like to keep them guessing.”

Breast Implants – By the Numbers

Posted by on Jun 19, 2018 in breast-augmentation | 0 comments

1. In 2015, about 1.4 million women around the world got saline or silicone breast implants. Some 300,000 of them lived in the United States, according to the International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery. Read about breast augmentation consultation, surgery and recovery here.

2. Breast implants are measured in cubic centimeters (ccs) rather than cup size. To figure out how many ounces the implants are, divide the number of cubic centimeters in each of them by 30.

3. On a woman who is completely flat-chested and has a medium-sized frame, a 450 cc implant would be equivalent to the average C-cup bra. 450 ccs equals about 15 ounces, like this water bottle. See our Before & After Breast Augmentation photos.

4. Don’t fret over a few cc difference in implant size: The difference between a 375 cc and a 400 cc implant is less than 2 tablespoons – the amount of oil you would add to boxed pancake mix. [WATCH OUR VIDEO: Here’s how you’ll know what size implants to get.]

5. The largest standard saline implant is 775 ccs, while a silicone gel implant is 800 ccs. That’s equivalent to about 27 ounces, like this can of salsa.

6. It’s rare for a surgeon to charge more for a breast augmentation with larger-sized implants. Manufacturers don’t charge by the cubic centimeter either: They charge one set price for all off-the-shelf saline breast implants, whether they are 200 ccs or 600 ccs, and another set price (about $1,000 higher) for silicone gel implants.

7. If you get a pair of 350 cc saline implants, they’ll weigh about 1.5 pounds. If you get a silicone gel set, they’ll be closer to 1.7 pounds. To calculate how much your implants weigh, see below:

 

8. Outside of the body, a saline implant would freeze at about 28 degrees Fahrenheit, while a silicone gel implant would ice up at around 170 degrees below zero. Because your breast implants are close to your body, your natural body heat will keep them warm.

If you have some time on your hands, check out The Measure of Things, where you’ll learn lots of “useful” facts including that 450 ccs is about 20 times as big as a marshmallow!

9. An implant’s silicone shell would melt at temperatures greater than 392 degrees Fahrenheit. A conventional sauna is typically between 150 and 190 degrees. If you were in an environment where your breast implants would melt, you’d melt, too.

10. Breast implants are designed to be sturdy, and each manufacturer has its own testing protocol. Allergan tests its implants by exerting nearly 55 pounds of force on them repeatedly, up to 6.5 million times. By contrast, a routine mammogram exerts about 40 pounds of force when it compresses the breast, and if a woman had 50 mammograms in her lifetime, it would be a lot. [WATCH OUR VIDEO: Can a Mammogram Break a Breast Implant?]

Bonus Fact. The TSA says that liquids and gels are safe to bring aboard an aircraft in limited amounts – 3.4 ounces or less. Thank goodness breast implants are “packed in your luggage,” so to speak, because one 425 cc implant is equal to about 14 ounces. It would be hard to squeeze it into one of those quart-sized plastic bags.

Wouldn’t math class have been a lot more fun if you had problems like these to solve?

Why I Had a Breast Augmentation:13 Women Tell All

Posted by on May 14, 2018 in breast-augmentation | 0 comments

Before and after photos show how a breast augmentation, breast lift or breast reduction changes a woman, but it’s her words that fill out the picture. More than 100 of my patients have shared their thoughts about their experience in reviews on RealSelf.com, a plastic surgery website. Here are a dozen excerpts that give you a peek into why they had surgery and how they feel about it afterward. Note: Before comments are preceded by a (B), after thoughts by an (A).

(B) I have always dreamt of the day I would have the courage and ability to get a boob job. After years of hard work and two kids, this past September my dream finally came true. (A) On the morning of my breast augmentation surgery I was giddy like a child on Christmas morning. I wake up everyday now so happy that I finally have the chest and confidence I always wanted! 

(B) I had wanted breast augmentation for almost 15 years. I knew I was going to have kids, and I figured I would just wait until I was finished having them. I looked at myself almost a year and half after my 3rd child, turned to my husband and said, “It’s time. I want my pre-baby breasts back.”(A) I am so pleased that I finally did it. Something for myself – and esteem. I feel like a new woman.

(B) I came all the way from India to Dr. Ted for asymmetric breasts. I was always bothered by the shape and asymmetry of my breasts, always thinking what I could wear to hide them. (A) Well, I just love my breasts now! Being self-conscious is a thing of the past. I am full of zeal and confidence now and loving the results. 

Read the blog: “Lessons Learned from 56,000 Breasts.”

(B) I was very insecure about how my breasts and nipples looked. My older sister had this procedure done by Dr. Eisenberg and I was amazed by his work. I knew this was definitely something I wanted to do. (A) I couldn’t be happier with the results. I feel as though I can finally be comfortable with myself. I’d do it again in a heartbeat.

(B) I have always felt I had a disproportionate and oddly shaped upper body. When we decided we were done having children I instantly decided I wanted breast implants(A) I am just shy of 2 weeks post surgery and I couldn’t be happier with my decision.

 

(B) I’ve always looked into the mirror and what stood out to me was my chest, or lack of chest. I just wanted to be a girl in my own eyes. People would always say you don’t need breast augmentation; you’re beautiful the way you are. Most of the people who told me this were lucky enough to have breasts. When I decided to have the surgery, I didn’t want anything drastic but just “something.”(A) Going from a light A cup to a C was the best decision of my life. I am only a couple weeks out and the final product isn’t here but I am already so excited and happy! [WATCH OUR VIDEO: Can You Make Me a Full C Cup?]

(B) Life begins at 65: This year, emboldened by my old age and a desire for physical comfort in my remaining years, I finally decided to put myself first and scheduled an appointment for a breast reduction. (A) My chronic back pain immediately vanished. While aesthetics weren’t my main priority, I must say it’s nice to have a more youthful-looking bust line. I actually keep (privately, of course) feeling myself, hardly believing that these are the same two “girls” that tortured me for 50 years. Why, oh why didn’t I do this sooner! 

(B) It took me two years to finally decide to get a breast augmentation. (A) This was the best decision I have ever made. 

(B) I’ve always wanted a breast augmentation. I never felt comfortable in bathing suits or in general. (A) The surgery was a great experience. Dr. Eisenberg and his team are super professional and friendly. I’m glad I chose them!

(B) I used to wish that cake went straight to my boobs. (A) Now they are the cherry on the cake. A perfect design in my eyes. I’m staring in the mirror every day and smiling – with not one bit of regret. My husband even loves them now and he was initially against the whole thing. 

(B) I started off at barely an A cup and didn’t want anything extreme. I just wanted to feel feminine. I told Dr. Eisenberg that I wanted a normal size for my body (5’1″ and 98 lbs). (A) I’m very satisfied with my results. My breasts are very symmetrical and natural looking.

(B) I was tired of the way my clothes hung on me so I came to Dr. Eisenberg for breast implants. (A) Everything happened exactly as he described, from the second we arrived at the hospital, to the stages of healing. I am beyond satisfied. If you want nice boobs, he’s your doctor!!

The Absolute Breast Thing I’ve Ever Done for Myself

(B) As a 40-year-old mother of three, my breasts had lost their shape and were sagging. I was tired of not being able to wear certain bathing suits, bras and tops and even more important tired of feeling self-conscious in front of my own husband.

Last spring I scheduled a dermatologist appointment to do a full body scan because I have a family history of skin cancer. I was so horrified that I had to be fully undressed that I struggled with the thought that I’d rather cancel the appointment and take my chances.

(A) My results are better than I could have ever dreamed! I am forever grateful to Dr. Eisenberg and his staff. They made me feel confident and comfortable again! For me this surgery was life changing and maybe even life saving because now I will never put off things like mammograms and skin scans. 

• • •

Although all of these kind words about myself, my staff and the hospital make me feel good, the point of these comments is that women consistently report that they feel good – physically and emotionally – after their surgery. Understandably cosmetic breast surgery is not for everyone, but for those who desire it, it can make a huge, life-changing difference. (Stayed tuned to our next blog to read about these life changes!)

 

Redditors Asked Me Anything: Breast Implants, Cadavers, Rockin’ Hooters & More

Posted by on Jan 1, 2018 in breast-augmentation | 0 comments

I’ve answered hundreds of questions about breast implants in my office and in my book, The Scoop On Breasts: A Plastic Surgeon Busts the Myths, but answering questions on Reddit? That’s another story!

On Dec. 13 at 4 p.m., I hosted a Reddit AMA (Ask Me Anything!) session. I was introduced like this:

IamA Guinness World Record Holding Breast Surgeon. I’ve examined at least 56,000 breasts during my 25-plus-year career as a plastic surgeon. I’m an expert knife and tomahawk thrower. AMA!

I might not have gotten as many questions as Barack Obama, Jerry Seinfeld or Arnold Schwarzenegger did when they were on Reddit, but I probably had as much fun. Here are a handful of the questions I was asked and my responses.

♦ Tinkletwit: Did you train on cadavers? If so, was the former person aware that they’d be getting implants in the afterlife?

Drted: Two years ago, I trained other surgeons on a cadaver in a workshop at Louisiana State University. They wanted to learn my approach to simultaneous breast augmentation and lift. About the afterlife? I didn’t know so I googled it and found this on HuffPost: “Most programs won’t allow you to donate your body for a specific purpose. You give them the body and they decide how to use it.” So I guess the person didn’t know she would be getting new, perky breasts.

♦ Nine­­_2_nine: I’ve nursed three babies in four years for 12 months each, so my boobs are pretty much shot. I’m considering fixing them sometime in the next 7 years or so. How would my boobs age as I age? Would they eventually sag? Would I be an old lady with rockin hooters?

Drted: As you age, you lose skin elasticity. Everything begins to droop a bit and go south. If you have breast implants, they won’t stay up high. They’ll move south, too, along with your breasts. You’ll be a rockin’ old lady with normal hooters!

♦ DrPolitick: What’s the farthest someone has traveled to get boobs from you?

Drted: India first, and then Ireland. (My office is in Philadelphia.) A woman from Oregon rented an RV and took a family road trip to Philly so I could do her surgery. I’ve had patients from many places in between, but these are pretty much the farthest.

Jerry Seinfeld didn’t talk about breasts during his Reddit session, but he did on Episode 56 – The Shoes – of Seinfeld. Watch it here.

Drted: There have been times when I thougt a woman’s breasts looked good as they were, but she wanted enhancement and I felt I could accomplish her goals. My experience is that women know what they want, and my job is just to listen.

♦ ChamberofSarcasm: How often do techniques change? In the 80s we had silicone and big scars on the underside of breasts. Then they went in the nipple, then the armpit. Do you think there’s a best method? Is there still a challenge or complication to be addressed or solved?

Drted: Techniques change maybe once a decade. For example, the silicone implants of the 1980s were more liquidy. Now they are more cohesive – like the gummy bear candy that doesn’t leak. Breast implants are always being studied and researched for safety. I feel that the best incision is in the crease under the breast because I don’t have to go through any breast structures to place the implants.

“I love Thanksgiving turkey . . . it’s the only time in Los Angeles that you see natural breasts.”
– Arnold Schwarzenegger, former governor of California.

♦ ChamberofSarcasm: Do you feel a sense of competition with other surgeons? Like a brain surgeon or ortho?

Drted: With other surgeons I feel more camaraderie than competition because they understand what’s involved in the responsibility of cutting into a person.

♦ 2009_G8GXP_for_sale: What’s the youngest and the oldest age of patients you’ve done the procedure on?

 Drted: The youngest was 18, which is what the FDA recommends, and the oldest was 72. She wanted to feel as good on the outside as she did on the inside.

♦ Solutionsfirst: What’s the #1 thing that would significantly make the overall process of surgery or surgery in your field significantly better?

Drted: Although it’s important to keep improving surgical equipment and techniques, what’s most important, I think, is improving doctor/doctor and doctor/patient communication. For example, some doctors think that patients might be discouraged by hearing about the risks and be prepared for them. We’re all grownups, and we want to know all that can happen so we can make an informed decision and know what to expect.

To read Dr. Ted Eisenberg’s entire Reddit, conversation, click here

 

The Breast Augmentation Patient Cluster Phenomenon

Posted by on Nov 7, 2017 in breast-augmentation | 0 comments

Redheads come in clusters, according to Austrian biologist Paul Kammerer, who studied coincidences when he wasn’t studying salamanders. In the early 1900s, he spent hours on the streets of Vienna recording the height, hair color and type of hat worn by passersby. He observed that men with red hair tended to pass by in clusters – often in threes – proof of his “law of series.”

The Redhead Cluster Phenomenon makes sense to me because over the last 10 years, I’ve made a similar observation, which I call the “Breast Augmentation Patient Cluster Phenomenon”!

When I review the charts in the operating room before I begin surgery, I notice similarities: “Everyone’s Asian today, ” or “Everyone has a tattoo or piercing,” or “All of the patients are named Jamie – and so is one of the nurses!”

Is it a cosmic biorhythm or an unexplainable phenomenon? What are the odds?

According to the “law of truly large numbers,’ credited to mathematicians Persi Diaconis and Frederick Mosteller, “with a large enough sample, any outrageous thing is likely to happen.” I’ve performed a truly large number of breast augmentations and breast lifts – more than 7,000 – so perhaps I have a large enough sample. Read more about breast augmentations and breast lifts.

I don’t know if these patient groupings are statistically inevitable or proof of Kammerer’s law, but I do know that my staff does not arrange the surgical schedule this way. Women choose their surgery date according to their convenience; we don’t choose it for them.

Some of the coincidences can be related to the seasons. We see large numbers of teachers and students who have the same school breaks. But most groupings are not seasonally related.

Even though my patients range in age from 18 to 67, on some days everyone is in their early 20s; on another day they’re in their 30s, on another in their 50s.

One day everybody might have children; on another day nobody has kids. One day all the women live close to my Philadelphia office, while on another day everyone comes from out of town. Some days all the women come in to the hospital with a bunch of family members; other days they are just dropped off.

I’ve also had days where all the patients were Hispanic, and others where they were all Italian, Indian or Russian.

I’ve had days where everybody was a nurse and others where all were a stay-at-home mom. And yes, I do have groupings of redheads, brunettes and blondes.

Sometimes, the women’s choice of breast implant size is the common denominator: Everyone seems to be choosing bigger implants one day, while others are “smaller size day” and “average size day.” This might correlate with the stature of the patients, which is another common denominator. They might all be tall and have big frames or all may be more petite. See Before & After photos here.

I’ve also had days where all the patients were perkier and other days where all were droopier. And even though breasts are sisters, not twins, some days all the women are fairly symmetrical and on another day they are more noticeably uneven and are getting breast implants of different sizes. [WATCH OUR VIDEO: Correcting Breast Asymmetry: They’re Sisters, Not Twins]

Do other people notice this phenomenon? Does this phenomenon occur in other settings? Does a hairstylist notice that one day all her clients are redheads and on another day everyone says, “Just cut it a little bit”? At Dunkin’ Donuts, is one day all about glazed jelly donuts? Do the chocolate frosted donuts sell out on another day?

Maybe I’m observing these similarities because I’m solely performing cosmetic breast surgery, and that’s making the coincidences more statistically possible. But on a recent surgery day, when I was chatting with the OR staff and I asked them their favorite ice cream flavor, they all said mint chocolate chip.

There might just be something to cluster phenomena after all!