What is Cosmetic breast surgery?

The breasts can be enlarged (augmentation), reduced, lifted and/or made more symmetrical to improve cosmetic appearance and confidence. This can be achieved with or without the use of breast implants or a person’s own fat (contour defect correction). If the volume of the breast when in a brassiere is satisfactory, often an implant is not necessary. Occasionally, men have abnormal breast tissue (gynaecomastia) which can be removed by liposuction or direct surgical removal.

What are the non-surgical and surgical options available?

Non-surgical options are often useful for tattooing pigmented areas, treating poor scar from previous surgery or filling small contour defects. Surgery always places scars on the breast. The aim is to minimise scarring, but which scars are necessary will be decided on a case by case basis. Incisions are placed around the areola and down to the inframammary fold, with or without extension underneath the breast, depending on the type of breast surgery. By comparison, liposuction or fat transfer can be done through small incisions which form very small scars.

How long do the results last for?

The results are often life long, although these can be impacted by significant weight change and ageing.

What are the risks?

Removing or moving breast tissue is usually safe. Occasionally poor scarring affects the cosmetic outcome and the breasts may feel lumpy. Nipple sensation is often altered but usually recovers fully. The ability to breast feed is affected in a small percentage of women, but some of these women do not know whether they could have breast fed before surgery, if they have nor started their family. Bleeding and infection are also risks, like in any surgery.

What are the success rates?

Breast reduction surgery has the highest satisfaction rate of any group of cosmetic procedures and breast augmentation is also very effective. Liposuction and fat transfer are quick, effective and safe surgeries, but the latter commonly needs several staged interventions to achieve the right result.

How much does the surgery cost?

The indicative prices below include the surgical fee, any anaesthetic used and the associated fees from the consultant administering this, in addition to the hospital fee and all tests and follow up. An accurate breakdown and a detailed quote will be given following the initial consultation.

From £5,000 under general anaesthetic

What general advice is there?

A good supportive brassiere or compression garment is advised for 3 months after surgery. This holds the shape and form of the breast whilst the scar tissue is consolidating.