Greensboro, NC

Breast Augmentation

Breast augmentation is a surgical procedure that enhances the size of a woman’s natural breasts. Saline or silicone gel implants can be used to create fuller breasts that improve appearance and self-esteem. Breast augmentation is a procedure frequently performed by Dr. David Bowers.

Dr. Bowers will discuss various elements of the procedure during an initial consultation. Together, he and the patient evaluate the options and arrive at an individualized plan that best serves her needs. These options include:

  • Type of breast implant (saline or silicone gel)
  • The size and profile of the implant
  • The location of the incision to place the implant
  • The texture of the outer shell of the implant
  • Anatomical location of implant placement (above or under chest muscles)

As a highly skilled and reputable plastic surgeon, Dr. Bowers will make every effort to achieve a natural look with this procedure.

Ideal Candidate

Breast augmentation may be a good choice for a patient with the following circumstances:

  • Good physical and psychological health
  • Realistic expectations
  • Physical maturation (breast development is complete)
  • Dissatisfaction with the appearance of the developed breasts

Additional circumstances for which breast augmentation may prove beneficial are:

  • Asymmetrical breasts
  • Breasts that have lost shape and volume due to pregnancy, weight loss, and aging

Types of Implants: Saline and Silicone Gel


Saline implants are empty prior to placement. They are filled with sterile saline solution (sterile saltwater) once placed in position at surgery. These implants can be placed through a smaller incision because they are filled after they are positioned inside the patient. Saline implants are FDA approved for augmentation in women 18 years of age and older. The saline inside is a natural substance. It will be absorbed by the body and expelled by natural means if a leakage were to occur. These implants are less expensive than those filled with silicone gel.

Silicone Gel

Silicone gel is an elastic gel that feels similar to natural breast tissue. Some people think that silicone gel implants have a more natural appearance than that of saline implants, but this seems to be more opinion than established fact. This type of implant is prefilled and requires a longer incision for placement. The FDA recommends that patients with these implants have an MRI every two years to evaluate the implants for leakage because it is more difficult to detect. The failure rate for these implants is the same as that of the saline type, about 1 to 2% per year. Silicone gel implants are FDA approved for breast augmentation in women 22 years of age and older.


Implant Size and Shape


Choosing the suitable size of breast implant for a given patient is an extremely important step when planning a breast augmentation. Dr. Bowers will help you with this process by carefully combining your goals with your physical characteristics. An implant that is too large for a woman’s breast can create a very different shape that may be unnatural and displeasing.


Implants are either round or anatomical (tear-drop shape). Round implants are used most often for breast augmentation because there is minimal chance of distortion if they rotate slightly. Anatomical implants must maintain a precise vertical orientation in order to avoid a distorted appearance.



Location of the Incision

A variety of incisions are available for insertion of saline implants because they are filled after they are in position. These incisions include the breast crease (inframammary), the edge of the areola surrounding the nipple (periareolar), the armpit (transaxillary), and the belly button (transumbilical). Silicone gel implants are usually placed through an inframammary approach because they are prefilled and this site allows a longer incision. Dr. Bowers usually prefers the inframammary incision for his patients. It is well hidden under the breast and provides direct visual access to the space where the implant will be placed. It also avoids an incision in the sensitive nipple/areolar area.

Location of Implant Placement

Implants can be positioned on top of the pectoralis chest muscle (subglandular) or under the muscle (submuscular). There are advantages to either site and Dr. Bowers will help you determine the best choice in your particular situation. In most cases, he prefers to place the implants under the muscle because there is more tissue to cover the implant and there is a lower incidence of capsular contracture (excessive internal scarring).

Potential Complications

All surgeries have potential complications and breast augmentation is no different. Fortunately, the incidence of complications is low when the procedure is performed by a qualified, board-certified plastic surgeon such as Dr. Bowers. Some of the potential complications are bleeding, infection, healing problems, scarring problems, leakage of the implant, capsular contracture, loss of sensation, and anesthesia-related complications. Dr. Bowers will discuss these with you and answer any questions you may have.


Recovery from breast augmentation is a gradual process over a 4 to 6 week period. The typical patient experiences some pain that requires pain medication for 2 to 4 days following surgery. Most patients return to work within a week, depending upon the occupation. Exercise is gradually resumed at 4 to 6 weeks.


It is normal to experience swelling for the first week or two following the procedure. It is also normal for the implants to appear to be high, i.e. a little above the breast mound. After several weeks, the swelling decreases, the tissues relax, and the implants “drop” into a more natural position. Dr. Bowers will explain the use of compression and implant massage that will be helpful during this process.

Dr. Bowers and his staff are committed to the care of his patients. It is a privilege and a pleasure to help each patient through this process. He and his staff look forward to meeting you and discussing your options. You can get started by calling 336-907-7980 or Contact Us.

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1002 North Church Street, Suite 203

Greensboro, NC 27401

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