I first started looking into getting breast implants in about 2010 as I was not happy with my size at that time. I realised though that I was actually trying to increase my breast size to balance out the size of my bum at the time which was starting to become a little large… So when I came to this realisation I shelved the idea. A few years ago, after being unhappy with my increased weight I committed to a diet and exercise plan and lost 25kgs, gaining the muscles I had in my 20’s but certainly resulting in boobs which did not resemble those from my 20’s. So I decided last year I would start to research implants to give me the size I liked (when I had the weight) without the fat filling them out. Whilst I loved the fact that I had lost the weight, I really didn’t feel confident naked with saggy breasts so wanted to fix them if I could.
Q: What plastic surgery procedures did you have?
I had a breast augmentation – under the muscle, round 425cc Motiva high profile implants, incision site under the breast.
Q: Did they all run smoothly, and was there any unexpected trials along the way?
It went beautifully. No issues at all.
Q: Talk us through the day of your procedure – how did you feel on the day, what preparation did you have to do, how did you feel when you woke up? How was your time in the hospital? How many days were you in there? How did you feel on the same day/day after/one week after, etc. Do you remember any particular milestones?
On the day of the procedure I had a mix of emotions – scared, excited, motivated, hoping. My prep was simple. Got up early to have a light meal from memory as I couldn’t eat from a certain time. Shower and use the special soap and then put on comfy clothes. I had my surgery at the Chermside Day Hospital here in Brisbane and I actually caught an Uber to the hospital. I know I could have asked friends/ family but I was actually feeling really good about going so an Uber made sense to me. Everyone at the hospital was so friendly and kind. I came out of recovery into a comfy chair where I ate a meal and had a cup of tea and waited for my friend to pick me up. From start to finish was about 5 hours.
As the anestethic wore off naturally things started to hurt a little more but to be honest I was relatively pain free for the first 48 hours. I used lots of ice packs to help with the swelling and took panadol but otherwise I was fine. I was a bit nervous by about day 3 as the bruising was really coming out at the incision site. I called Dr Richardson on his mobile to ask about the bruising and he was very reassuring. I was either not listening or didn’t hear discussions about bruising (naively) so it did scare me a bit but once I spoke with him I was happy. I continued with panadol for a couple of days but it was really the incision site that stung rather than anything else hurting.
In that first week the implants sat very high but I was reassured that eventually they would settle. I didn’t care. They looked incredible even sitting high so surely it just had to get even better.
I am really glad I took 2 weeks off work to just rest. It was dead boring I must admit as I couldn’t really walk to far – felt like there was too much bounce, but the rest was good. I slept propped up on pillows for just over 2 weeks to help with the swelling and that was pretty annoying but I just didnt feel I could lie flat without it hurting. Just seemed to pull here, there, and everywhere and the pain around the incision site was a bit uncomfortable. I think though that in the end I told myself to stop being a sook and lay on my back. Slept like a dream…
Q: Looking back at your journey, is there anything you would have done differently, or any advice that you have for anyone looking at having similar surgeries?
I am happy that I did a lot of research. Hey, even watching Botched helped me understand what I wanted and the things that could go wrong so I felt that when I went in to my appointments I was not a complete numpty. Funnily enough I watched an episode of Botched on the morning of surgery.
I am also very glad that I had multiple consults with a few doctors until I found the right one. Each doctor told me something different which was a bit stressful and confusion. Doctor 1 – over the muscle, no lift. Doctor 2 – under the muscle with a lift. Doctor 3 – Dr Richardson – under the muscle no lift. The one thing that I recommend is asking a lot of questions. I questioned Dr Richardson as to why he would not do a lift when Doctor 2 said I needed it. He gave me a really clear explanation which was just perfect for me.
I probably wouldn’t have rung Dr Richardson when I was worried. I could have asked the question on the facebook group and everyone could have helped me or I could have rung the nurses the next day. Nevermind. He was very kind in any event.
Q: Is there anything you wish you knew before the surgery, about researching surgeons or the actual surgery itself?
No I really had done my homework, asked friends and my GP about various doctors, did a lot of research about the doctors and their surgeries too before embarking.
Q: What surgeon/s did you have, and did you feel they did everything they should along the way? How was the clinic and it’s staff?
Dr Phil Richardson was excellent. I can’t recall the name of the anethetist right now but she was excellent as well. I really like Dr Richardson’s demeanour. A few people told me that he was ‘flashy’ and ‘arrogant’ but I found the complete opposite. He was kind, measured, and very helpful when I asked questions. I felt very comfortable with him and also with everyone who worked for him.
Q: How was your recovery and is there anything you would pass on to other patients having similar surgery? Did you wear compression garments, have drains, special bras, clothes, etc. Did you need any extra help? How long until you could drive, go to the gym, return to your normal routine etc.
Surgery was easy. I wasn’t stressed going in to it. Just excited so I think that helped. And I felt safe and in good hands. My advice? Trust Dr Richardson. Everything he told me was correct and it just felt right.
After surgery they give you a soft bra to wear and after the first check up you get a lovely post surgery number. Not the most flattering but who cares. Wearing it made things so much more comfortable as they felt more secure. I then went out and purchased some zip up crop tops from Kmart and these have been great too. I actually still wear these every night to bed as it helps with the weight.
I did need help at home but only on the first night. This is necessary anyway to make sure you are ok post op. I also made sure that I had meals prepared before hand as you are kind of like a T-rex with little arms for a while – you cant reach up to high cupboards so taking it easy was essential. My daughter came over for a couple of days to help me shower etc. And I was able to drive after one week. At that time I did pull my seat closer to the steering wheel so I was not reaching and I didnt drive very far to just make sure I took care of myself.
After two weeks I started to go back to the gym but only doing light walking and low impact lower body exercises till week 6 when I got my clearance from the Nurse. By this time I was going a little stir crazy from not being in the gym so it was great to get back into the swing of things at that time. I would say it took me 3 months before I was 100% and I am now lifting heavier weights than before I had surgery and I just passed my 5 month mark.
Q: How do you feel now in comparison to how you felt before your surgery?
A – MA – ZING. Love them. So glad I took the plunge. I could not be happier. I am still waiting for some of the numbness to subside but I know this can take quite a long time. The sensitivity is returning little by little.
Q: How did your family and friends react to your surgery?
My family and friends and have been very supportive and they think I look great. I think to them it is more about the confidence I now have more than anything else.
Q: Any other notes/advice/parts of your journey you’d wish to share?
Just do your homework, dont rush into it, be sure with what you want and go for it. When I had my consult with Dr Richardson, although I knew everyone’s breasts were different, I took with me pictures of what I would like to look like. I had a fair idea seeing I had come from having large breasts when I had my weight on so I felt the photos were realistic but I think it helped me explain exactly what I wanted. Dr Richardson told me it gave him a good indication and the photos were realistic for me is I recommend others do this too. You just have to be really honest with what you look like and what you realistically hope to achieve.
Dr Phil Richardson is a highly respected and fully qualified plastic surgeon based at Brisbane Plastic Surgery. To learn more about him check out his website or to arrange a consultation you can phone (07) 3268 3774.