8 Questions to Ask When Considering Breast Augmentation

  • Senior doctor checking patient's test result
    Ask the right questions so you’ll know what to expect.
    Your consultation appointment with a plastic surgeon or cosmetic surgeon is the time to ask key questions. These will help you make an informed decision. The answers should leave you feeling confident about the surgeon, the merits of the surgery, and whether it's right for you. Bring paper and pen along with this list of questions. Take notes you can review later on.

  • All her hard work will pay off in the end
    1. How often do you perform this surgery?
    The answer to this question will tell you something about the surgeon's experience with the procedure you want. The person you choose should be board certified. Certification by the American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS) means the surgeon has special training in general and plastic surgery, which includes cosmetic surgery. The American Board of Cosmetic Surgery (ABCS) certifies doctors who complete the training requirements of cosmetic surgery, but the ABCS is distinct from the ABPS. In either case, you want a surgeon with significant experience performing breast augmentation. Is it the surgeon's main area of expertise? How comfortable you are with the actual number of operations he or she does in a year is a personal decision. But, you should know upfront how familiar the surgeon is with this specific procedure.

  • woman talking to male doctor
    2. Am I a good candidate for breast augmentation?
    A good candidate is in good health and has reasonable expectations about what breast augmentation can accomplish. A good surgeon will be honest about whether the surgery can accomplish what you want. This is based in part on an examination of your breasts. Their overall shape and size, the location of the nipples and areolas, and skin quality are among the factors the surgeon will consider.

  • Woman choosing breast implants
    3. What kind of augmentation is right for me?
    The size and type of breast augmentation can vary widely. Your surgeon should give you a clear picture of what he or she sees as the best option for you and your body type. An experienced surgeon will be able to augment your breasts in the right proportion to your body. He or she should also give you a specific idea of what the size of your new breasts will be. You should also get other details about the procedure and about your recovery.

  • doctor talking to female patient
    4. Do you have before-and-after photographs you can show me?
    One of the best ways to see what breast augmentation can do is through photos. A surgeon should have many photographs to show you of breast augmentations that would work well for your body type and proportions. This can give you a better sense of what to expect. In turn, it can help in your decision-making process as well. 

  • Surgeon holding breast implant above patient in operating room
    5. What happens during the procedure?
    Breast augmentation is often done on an outpatient basis. However, it is still a major medical procedure. Your surgeon should fully brief you on how to prepare for the surgery. The surgeon should explain what techniques he or she will use. The surgeon should also explain what you should do ahead of time to prepare for after the procedure. For instance, you'll need someone to drive you to and from the surgery.

  • Doctor examining bandaged woman
    6. What is the recovery process like?
    It's also important to know what to expect after the procedure and steps you'll need to take to recover safely at home. When can you go back to work? What about exercise? During your recovery, you also may need help with everyday chores and have to abstain from activities, such as showering or sex.

  • woman holding chest
    7. What are the possible complications of the procedure?
    All surgeries have basic risks. But, breast augmentation poses some unique risks. These include the chance of pain, scarring, or fluid accumulating in your breasts. You could lose some sensation in your breasts. Ask your surgeon how common these complications are. Ask how to recognize them and what to do if they occur. 

  • Doctor Showing Silicone Breast Implant to Patient
    8. What can I expect in the months and years ahead?
    Your body will change over time. This can include how your breasts look after augmentation. It’s important to understand how your breasts will look not only in the short term, but in the long term as well. Your surgeon should be frank and upfront about this. It’s also reasonable to ask for photos showing what implants could look like as the years pass.

8 Questions to Ask When Considering Breast Augmentation
Breast Augmentation

About The Author

  1. Questions to Ask Your Breast Augmentation Surgeon. American Society of Plastic Surgeons, 2015. http://www.plasticsurgery.org/cosmetic-procedures/breast-augmentation.html?sub=Questions+to+ask+your...
  2. Consult and Pre-Op Questions to Ask Your Surgeon. Breast Health Online, 2014. http://www.breasthealthonline.org/answers/reduction/item/consult-and-pre-op-questions-to-ask-your-su...
  3. Your Breast Augmentation Consultation. American Society of Plastic Surgeons, 2015. http://www.plasticsurgery.org/cosmetic-procedures/breast-augmentation.html?sub=Your+breast+augmentat... 
  4. Breast Implant Information. National Center for Health Research, 2015. http://www.breastimplantinfo.org/what-you-need-to-know/what-to-ask-your-friends-relatives-and-plasti... 
  5. Preparing for Breast Augmentation Surgery. American Society of Plastic Surgeons, 2015. http://www.plasticsurgery.org/cosmetic-procedures/breast-augmentation.html?sub=Preparing+for+breast+... 
  6. Breast Augmentation Risks and Safety. American Society of Plastic Surgeons, 2015. http://www.plasticsurgery.org/cosmetic-procedures/breast-augmentation.html?sub=Breast+augmentation+r...
  7. Cosmetic Surgery vs. Plastic Surgery. American Board of Cosmetic Surgery. http://www.americanboardcosmeticsurgery.org/patient-resources/cosmetic-surgery-vs-plastic-surgery/
Was this helpful?
Medical Reviewer: William C. Lloyd III, MD, FACS
Last Review Date: 2019 Jul 31
THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for informational purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.