Breast Augmentation Recovery – What You Need To Know
Breast Augmentation Dubai | 4 April 2020
Once your surgery is completed, you must follow all the instructions given to you in order to heal properly and have a good outcome.
The following instructions are your obligation. Use this as a checklist of progress as you heal. Included are normal post-surgical experiences and key health considerations that may be a cause of concern.
TYPICAL POST-OPERATIVE SYMPTOMS
Typical symptoms of breast augmentation and signs to watch for following surgery with silicone breast implants include the following:
Tightness in the chest region and stiffness
Tingling, burning or intermittent shooting pain. These are normal experiences as the skin, muscles and tissue stretch to accommodate your breast implants, and as sensory nerves heal. Pain medication and muscle relaxants will help you cope with any discomfort. If you have drains, you may experience additional localised discomfort. Consistent sharp pain should be reported to our office immediately.
Hypersensitivity of nipples or lack of sensitivity
This is normal and will gradually resolve over time. You may also experience a small amount of fluid or milk seeping through the nipples. If this becomes painful or excessive notify my office immediately.
A feeling of heaviness
It is normal for your chest to feel heavy as you adjust to your implants. This will subside within 2-4 weeks following surgery.
Shiny skin or any itchy feeling
Swelling can cause the breast’s skin to appear shiny. As the healing process advances, you may also find a mild to severe itchy feeling of the breasts. If the skin becomes red and hot to the touch, contact our office immediately.
Asymmetry, the breasts look different, or heal differently
Breasts may look or feel quite different from one another in the days following surgery. This is normal. Although no two breasts in nature or following surgery are perfectly symmetrical, breast massage and time will produce breasts that are similar in shape, position and size.
A sloshing sound or sensation
This is not the result of your implant, but rather of air that is trapped in the implant pocket and fluid that may naturally accumulate. This is perfectly normal and will resolve within 2-4 weeks.
AFTER SURGERY CARE
Your greatest discomfort usually occurs the first 24-48 hours after surgery. During this time, take all medications prescribed by me as directed. It is helpful to take pain medication with bland food to avoid nausea, which may occur if taken on an empty stomach.
Wear garments as directed after surgery. An additional garment may be picked up at the office. Contact the office before taking any Aspirin, ibuprofen (Motrin/Advil) or Aspirin-like medications. You may take Tylenol, if you are not taking a pain medicine that already contains Tylenol (acetaminophen), such as Percocet (oxycodone) or Norco (hydrocodone).
Eat easily digestible foods. These are tolerated well the first 24 hours after surgery. If you are not experiencing nausea, you may resume a normal diet. Drink plenty of non-caffeinated beverages and eat fruit and food high in fiber to avoid constipation. Should constipation occur, discontinue pain medication (if tolerated). For relief, you may try magnesium citrate (purchased at your local pharmacy) or prune juice. It may take up to 24 hours to produce a bowel movement. These treatments may be repeated as needed.
AFTER SURGERY ACTIVITY AND HYGIENE INSTRUCTIONS
No lifting over 10-15lb. until cleared by myself. When at home, take frequent rest periods – you may walk for short distances, as walking is important to prevent clots from forming in your legs. As you increase your activity, let comfort be your guide. If it hurts, don’t do it.
Do not resume jogging, aerobics, sexual or vigorous activity until cleared by myself. No heavy household chores (laundry, vacuuming, sweeping/mopping, etc.) until cleared. You may shower 24 hours after surgery. Do not submerge incisions or drains (if present) under water such as in bath, lake, river, pool or hot tub. If present, leave steri-strips (flesh colored bandages) in place. All other dressings may be removed to shower.
Continue to wear the garment, placed on you at the time of surgery, 24/7 except to shower or to launder the garment. Two weeks after surgery, you may discontinue sleeping in the garment and only wear it during the day. While taking pain medicine, have someone assist you with daily activities, particularly personal hygiene.
Limit arm usage to routine daily functions such as brushing your teeth, eating, washing and combing your hair. Avoid vigorous arm motion that requires pushing, pulling and/or lifting heavy objects.
As you heal and soreness subsides, let pain be your guide for your activity level. If it hurts, don’t do it. Check with me before returning to work, particularly if your job requires heavy lifting or vigorous activity.
Avoid sleeping on your abdomen until all soreness has subsided. You may find sleeping propped on 2-3 pillows more comfortable. Avoid sunbathing for 4-6 weeks or until cleared by myself.
Do not wear an underwire bra for 6 weeks. At that point, you may wear a bra of your choice. However you will need to wear a good supportive bra for exercise or vigorous activity. Preferably a sports-type bra that has cups versus one that just compresses the breasts.
Do not smoke for 6 weeks as smoking delays the healing process.
You may have several layers of dressings. After 24 hours, you may remove all dressings except the flesh-colored bandages (steri-strips) or clear “tape” (Prineo). Leave either of these dressings in place until your follow up with your surgeon. If either of these dressings comes off, please contact my office for further instructions.
Do not put anything on your incisions except soap and water unless instructed.
Please notify me if:
– You have a fever greater than 101 that lasts more than 24 hours.
– You develop excessive swelling, redness or warmth of incisions.
– You experience severe pain not responding to pain medication.
– You develop thick, odorous drainage or bleeding that does not subside. – You experience shortness of breath.
– One breast appears twice the size or more than the other.
AFTERCARE: BREAST AUGMENTATION SUMMARY
On day two from surgery remove all gauze in the bra and throw it away. Shower, and then pat the incisions (steri-strips or skin glue) with a clean cloth. Replace soft bra. You will not need gauze unless you have some slight drainage from the incision sites and want to keep this from getting on your clothes.
You may shower two days after surgery (48 hours after surgery). Do not bathe, swim, hot tub, lake swim, or use a whirlpool until incisions are fully closed. I will determine when you are cleared for these activities based on your physical exam. You may feel lightheaded on your first or second shower, therefore a shower assistant is mandatory. Sitting on a chair in the shower is also helpful if you feel more comfortable.
Complete your course of antibiotics. Arnica may reduce bruising and you should take a complete course. Take prescribed pain medication only as directed and consider Extra Strength Tylenol in place of narcotics. Take medications with food to reduce nausea. Resume pre-operative medications unless otherwise directed by your operating physician or personal physician.
Initially, there will be quite a bit of swelling. This swelling over the first couple of days. You will notice that your implants/breasts seem high on your chest. This is often very normal. On day 5 you will start massaging your breasts. This will assist with the implants settling and the capsule to form flexibly. Do not apply heat or ice to any treatment areas. Your ability to sense if your skin is getting too cold or hot is not normal and you may burn yourself.
Start gentle massage of the breasts at day 5. I or my office staff will demonstrate this technique for you at your post-operative visit. Lymphatic massage has also been shown to help people with fluid retention following surgery. Do not lie on your stomach.
Start with a bland soft diet and increase this slowly. Slowly resume a balanced healthy diet. This is often difficult following surgery as you are not feeling at your best and are limited in the amount of physical activity you can do. Limit the amount of salt to take in as this will affect your swelling. Drink plenty of fluids. Avoid alcohol.
Avoid tight fitting bras that dig into your skin or incision. Wear a soft bra that gives moderate support and opens from the front. This makes it easier to take it on and off.
It is well known that nicotine impairs healing and increases your risk of infection. Your scars and final outcome are negatively affected by smoking/nicotine as well.
Do not drive or operate any heavy machinery for 24 hours following surgery and/or until you are not taking pain pills. You will need someone with you mandatorily for 24 hours following surgery.