Breast Implant Pre-operative Appointment: The steps

You’ve done your research, found our office, and now you decided to move ahead with surgery. It is an exciting time! The next step is to get prepared, starting with your preoperative appointment. This appointment is typically scheduled 2-4 weeks before your procedure and it helps you plan for all aspects of your upcoming surgery and recovery.  

Here’s what you need to know

The preoperative appointment is a planning and information-gathering visit. The key elements of this appointment include:

  • Reviewing your goals, medical history, and selecting implants 
  • Reviewing and signing the informed consent form  
  • Taking preoperative photographs
  • Going over pre- and post-op instructions
  • Receiving prescriptions and orders for medical clearances 
  • Confirming surgery arrival time and start time
  • Making final payment for surgery
  • Scheduling initial postoperative follow-up visits

The Steps

Crucial conversation: We start with an in-depth conversation discussing what we hope to achieve. Come prepared to work through:

  • Your goals for your breasts: size, shape, and projection
  • Your lifestyle, athletic activities, and other considerations that may impact decisions
  • Your medical history including any previous surgeries or health conditions
  • Options for implant type (saline or silicone), sizing, placement, and incision location

This discussion is essential for developing a customized surgical plan that takes into account your body and goals. Bring any questions or photos of results that speak to you. The more we work through your preferences the better. 

Preoperative photos: Next, we will take photographs of your breasts. Preoperative photos are an important part of your medical record. Standard preoperative photos taken include:

  • Full front chest 
  • Oblique angles focusing on your breasts
  • Side profiles showing your breast silhouette 

Although it may feel uncomfortable to have your photos taken they serve a vital purpose and established a photographic record of what your breasts look like before surgery. This is important for you and our office. Taking your photographs before and after surgery, allows for side-by-side comparisons of your results. It is a lot of fun to compare these photos post-operatively.  We also use them to make your operative plan and to document asymmetries. These images are part of your medical history and strictly confidential. Pictures will never shared publicly without your written consent. 

Your exam: We will perform an exam and also take measurements of your breasts.  This will help us to select your implant. We will also use various implant sizers placed into your bra to demo potential outcomes. You’ll have the opportunity to “try on” different sizes, and profiles. This will include:

  • A discussion of what looks good to you
  • Education on the implant options 
  • Review other results from patients who have your body type

Informed Consent: The informed consent process outlines the risks, benefits, and alternatives to breast augmentation so that you can make an educated decision about surgery. This documentation will include:

  • Step-by-step specifics of how the procedure will be performed 
  • Potential complications like bleeding, infection, and capsular contracture 
  • Options if revision surgery is necessary in the future

We will answer any of your questions at this time. Informed consent is critical for understanding the surgical plan and what we do when unexpected outcomes happen.

Surgical planning: Surgical preparation and recovery information will be provided at the preoperative visit as well.  This will include these pre-operative instructions:

  • When to stop certain supplements or medications that increase bleeding risk 
  • Getting medical clearance from your PCP if you have health conditions
  • Guidelines for eating, drinking, and bathing, leading up to the procedure
  • What to bring/not bring to the surgery center or hospital
  • Reminders about arrival time, arranging transportation, and having a caregiver for at least the first 24 hours post-surgery

You will also receive your post-operative instructions laying out how you can heal comfortably and effectively after the procedure.  This will include:

  • Guidelines for resuming activity, week-by-week 
  • Incision care instructions 
  • Medications for pain management
  • Instructions for wearing a surgical bra or garment
  • Warning signs of potential complications needing urgent follow-up 
  • Scheduling your follow-up appointments

Come prepared with questions, especially regarding when you can return to work, exercise, travel, and other routine activities. 

The medical checklist: At the preoperative visit, you’ll receive e-prescriptions for:

  • Antibiotics to prevent infection
  • Pain medications for post-surgical discomfort  
  • Muscle relaxers or anti-nausea medicines if needed 

It is important to pick these up before surgery. You may also receive orders for pre-admission or pre-surgical testing.  Diagnostic tests may include:

  • Bloodwork
  • Urinalysis
  • Chest x-ray
  • Mammogram
  • Electrocardiogram (EKG)

All testing is completed close to the surgery date to ensure that we are looking at your current health status. Results should be sent directly to us.  For some patients, we will advise them to get these tests completed with their primary doctor or specialists.  That is on a case-by-case basis.

Final Payment: After your preoperative education is complete and your informed surgical consent has been given, the final invoice for your surgery is due. This will include:

  • The surgeon’s fee
  • Anesthesia and other providers’ costs
  • Implant fees 
  • Hospital or surgical facility charges 
  • Post-surgical garments/medications

We give you these cost details in writing so there are no surprises on the day of surgery.

Now you are ready!

A thoughtful and inclusive preoperative appointment is the best way to ease your anxiety about surgery and get you excited about what is to come. We want you to leave this appointment feeling empowered, educated, and confident, especially with our surgical plan. So don’t hesitate to ask us questions.  This is the ideal time to work through your concerns and make sure that you are prepared for your surgery and recovery.  Your amazing transformation is just around the corner!