Welcome to our glossary of cosmetic surgery terms. This sections is designed to help you understand the lingo of the cosmetic surgery world.

Anatomical implants – These breast implants have a teardrop shape to follow the body’s natural lines. These breast implants are appropriate for women with very little breast volume, or with a particular chest anatomy. An occasional problem with the anatomical breast implant shape is that any rotation of the implant within its pocket will cause the breast to look lopsided.

BASO – British Association of Surgical Oncology

BAAPS – British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons. BAAPS membership is recognised as the single most reliable measure of professional standards in plastic and cosmetic breast surgery in the UK. All MyBreast surgeons are members of BAAPS.

BAPRAS – British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons. It is an association set up by British Plastic Surgeons to advance education in all aspects of Plastic Surgery.

Boob jobs – The common expression for breast augmentation, or breast enlargement.

Breast augmentation – This is the technical term for breast enlargement, or “boob job”, as it is commonly known. It is a surgical procedure that uses implants to enhance the size and shape of a woman’s breasts.

Breast enhancement – This is a surgical procedure designed to improve the shape, size or appearance of a breast. It may involve augmentation, surgical lift, alteration or reduction.

Breast enlargement – This is a surgical procedure that uses breast implants to enhance the size and shape of a woman’s breasts.

Breast reduction – Very large breasts can be a great source of discomfort, causing problems such as poor posture, neck ache, back ache, bra strap pain, skin irritation and difficulty finding clothes. Breast reduction is an effective way to address these issues and involves removing excess skin and breast tissue to achieve a new and improved size and shape.

Capsular contracture – This is part of the body’s natural response to form a layer of scar tissue around a breast implant as it heals. This scar tissue is referred to as the capsule. When the capsule begins to tighten (or contract) around the implant, it can cause pain, hardening of the breast, and distortion of the breast shape. There is some evidence to suggest that capsular contracture can be avoided by placing the breast implant beneath the chest muscle rather than on top of it. Also, MyBreast uses SOFT TOUCH™ implants, which are specifically designed to minimise the effect of capsular contracture.

CCST – Certificate of Completion of Specialist Training in Plastic Surgery

Cosmetic surgery – Refers to surgery that is designed to improve the aesthetic appearance of a person’s body and can take many forms. Breast surgery is one type of cosmetic surgery.

FRCS – Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons

FRCS (Plast) – Plastic Surgery Specialist Fellowship

GMC – General Medical Council

Implant exchange –.There is no hard and fast rule for when implants should be changed. The life expectancy of modern, high-grade breast implants like the ones used at MyBreast is yet to be known, but is now very likely to exceed the 10 years previously expected. If an implant has been used for a long time, they could harden and become uncomfortable, or rupture, although neither is necessarily a health risk.

Implant leakage – Silicone no longer leaks. The new generations of implants are made from cohesive gel of silicone which remains inside the implant shell even when the shell is cut and pressure is applied. Please see the implant safety features video for more description.

Implant rippling – Occurs if the filling material inside a breast implant shifts around and allows a wrinkle or fold to appear in the outer shell. The result is a bump, ridge, or valley that can be felt and sometimes seen on the surface of the breast. Rippling is less common in certain types of breast implants, including smooth-surfaced breast implants such as Inspira™ SOFT TOUCH™ implants.

Implant rupture – A rupture involves a hole or split forming in the shell of a breast implant. Modern implants used by MyBreast are made with stronger shell and the cohesive silicon gel is designed to eliminate spread in the event of a rupture.

Infra-mammary fold – This is the part of the chest which is the natural boundary between the breast from below and the chest. It is often referred to as the inframammary crease or inframammary line and is often where the incision is made to insert the breast implants in cosmetic breast surgery.

Inverted nipples – There are varying degrees of nipple inversion, from nipples which retract or go in occasionally, to those that are permanently in all the time. The solutions will be dependent on the degree of inversion and options should be discussed with your MyBreast surgeon.

Mastopexy – Often referred to as breast lift surgery, this term is used to describe surgical operation designed to improve the appearance of the breast. Aging, weight loss, and childbirth can lead to a loss of volume and tone of the breast causing sagging or drooping. Sometimes a lift is sufficient to restore shape, however in cases where the breast has lost volume, an implant may be desirable.

MBBS – The commonly used acronym used to describe the Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery in the UK. This qualification or equivalent is needed to practice medicine in the UK.

MS – Master of Surgery degree

Nipple realignment – Sometimes nipples are positioned low or unevenly on the breast. Breast enlargement surgery may help to lift them. If they are very low, however, this operation alone may not be the solution, as it might add too much volume in the upper pole of the breast. In such a case, you may also need a specific type of surgery, called a mastopexy, to lift your nipples.

Nipple sensation – Nipple and breast sensation may change after breast augmentation, causing an increase or decrease in sensitivity in the breast area. Changes can vary from extreme sensitivity to no sensation at all. These nipple and breast sensation changes are usually temporary and very rarely permanent after breast augmentation surgery.

Plastic surgery – Is a medical specialty that uses a number of surgical techniques to change the appearance and function of a person’s body. Plastic surgery encompasses both cosmetic enhancements and functionally reconstructive operations.

Round implants – At present, the round breast implant shape is the most popular breast implant shape in the UK. It gives the breast a more pronounced, augmented look. It has been tried and tested more than any other breast implant, and has been the source of excellent breast augmentation results in thousands of women worldwide. The round breast implant shape is generally suitable for the vast majority of patients.

Saline implants – Saline breast implants were initially developed because they could be inserted through a smaller incision. They are seen as having a slightly lower tendency to develop capsular contracture (hardening) around the breast implant. However, there are problems with shape control, loss of volume over time, and rippling (visible wrinkles on the breast), which have meant that they are now used in a minority of cases in the UK.

Silicone implants – Silicone (in gel form) was first used and approved for medical use as it causes very little reaction in human tissue. It is widely used in the food and pharmaceutical industries, and in many medical devices such as pacemakers, heart valves, and coatings for hypodermic needles. Silicone breast implants are preferred by surgeons and patients worldwide because of their shape, texture and longevity. Silicone implants have less risk of ridges, and are designed to give a more natural, anatomical form to the breast than other breast implants.

Uneven breasts – When one breast is noticeably larger than the other, women may choose a surgical solution. Corrective surgery might entail making the smaller breast larger to match the bigger one, or sometimes the larger one is made smaller to match the smaller of the two, depending on the preferred size and shape.

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