A cosmetic surgeon can perform both breast augmentation and breast reconstructive surgery, but aside from both procedures involving the breast, they are two completely different surgeries in both their operation and goals.
Breast augmentation is one of the most popular cosmetic surgery procedures. Women undergo enlargement surgery to improve the appearance of their figures, and they have numerous implant choices available to help them customize the results to their body types and cosmetic desires. Implants come in various sizes, shapes and profiles.
Like augmentation surgery, breast reconstruction is also a cosmetic procedure, but with many differences in how it is performed and what is used inside the breast.
The goal of breast reconstruction is to replace the breast tissue that was removed. Women have the options of using either breast implants, breast expanders or relocating back or abdominal tissue to the chest to create a breast and create as much symmetry to the breasts as possible.
The main difference between the two is with breast reconstruction, there is no tissue, so it’s all new. With breast augmentation, the tissue is there, you’re just adding to it.
As with all surgeries, both breast augmentation and breast reconstruction have risks and possible complications associated with them, and your plastic surgeon will be able to work with you, discuss the risks with you and create the best procedure for your individual needs.
Dr. Andrew Freel is a plastic surgeon with Associates in Plastic Surgery working with Woman’s Hospital.