There are probably as many post-op protocols after breast augmentation as there are plastic surgeons. You probably wonder why some of your friends after breast augmentation had to wear a special bra while others did not. Some were asked to massage implants and others were not. Some friends had drains tubes while others had none.
You may wonder why so many post-op management methods exist and whether one protocol is better than another.
In my opinion, the protocol a surgeon follows is largely a function of his/her training and experience. What is important is that the surgeon gets the desired results consistently. Having said that, here is the protocol which has worked well for my patients.
- Activity levels: I generally advise my patients against lifting more than 5 pounds and lifting their arms above shoulder height in the first 5 days. The lifting limit is increased to 15 pounds after the 5 days and they are able to get the arms up. One more week later they may start to do upper body exercises.
- Massaging: I feel very strongly about massaging about 5 days after surgery. It helps bring the implants down to the correct position and it also stretches the implant pockets to soften the breasts. In the long run, I believe massaging helps to reduce the chance of implants contracture.
- Bras: I do not use post-op bras or binders. I also do not recommend wearing bras for the first month as much as possible to allow better implant settling.
- Drains: I do not use drains. Some surgeons use drains to decrease the chance of hematoma. I however prefer not to use drains to decrease the chance of infections. I use extreme cares during surgery to minimize the bleeding possibilities.
These post-op protocols after breast augmentation are easy to follow and have worked well for my patients. Hopefully by following these steps, we can achieve the best outcome after breast augmentation.