One of the most common topics of discussion during the initial consultation for breast cosmetic surgery is current and desired bra size.
It is interesting to note that bra sizing was developed by the clothing industry and there is no clearly defined or widely accepted protocol or method of measurement of breast size in the Plastic Surgery literature.
It is well known that very significant variations of bra measurements exist among bra manufactures and in reality, bra sizes vary not only among different brands but also depend on market trends and customer preferences. Individual women’s body habitus, breast asymmetries and degree of breast ptosis (how low the breast tissue sits on the chest) can also affect the measurements.
So, what would be a meaningful discussion about desired bra size during an initial consultation?
I believe that no breast cosmetic surgery can really change an individual chest or “under-bust” measurement. This is because this measurement is determined mainly by the structure of your rib cage.
In terms of breast size itself, the breast has a certain base (or width) which is determined by where the breast mount starts at the cleavage area and where it finishes at the side of the chest (near the armpit).
The breast base can only change to a very small degree with breast reduction or uplift surgery; and can potentially change a little more with breast augmentation surgery depending on the width of the implant chosen by the Plastic Surgeon.
What can change significantly with breast reduction or uplift or augmentation surgery is the breast projection; that is the distance the central most prominent part of the breast (or the nipple area) protrudes forward from the chest.
Therefore, in my opinion a bra cup size cannot be guaranteed after cosmetic breast surgery and I always explain this to my patients during their consultation with me.
What I can promise is that I will take into account your wishes for your final breast size, your overall frame and proportions and aim to give you a result that is aesthetically suitable and satisfying for you.