Dr. Vincent Lepore explains that, despite the increasing popularity of imaging software, he prefers alternative methods to help patients visualize outcomes, such as allowing them to “try implants on for size.”
San Jose, California (April 2010) – Computer-imaging software is popular with many cosmetic surgeons at the moment, but board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Vincent Lepore says that this is one technology may not give patients the whole picture. Dr. Lepore instead strongly advocates that his patients considering breast augmentation in San Jose test out implant samples at his office, a method that can offer significant advantages over computer-generated surgical “previews.”
“I’m not against computer modeling in general, but I think it’s important to recognize its limitations,” explains Dr. Lepore, a plastic surgeon in San Jose. “Trying on breast implant samples gives patients a much more concrete way to evaluate their options, and since everything stems from the goals you set in consultation, I believe it’s extremely important to give patients a way to preview their results beyond the computer screen.”
Breast enlargement imaging systems work by scanning the patient’s body with cameras, then using those photos to generate a “3D” image that the doctor can manipulate to mimic the effects of surgery. However, while these systems can illustrate on-screen how different implant types would look, Dr. Lepore says that they may actually narrow patients’ understanding of their options since the real-world feel and movement of the implants is not replicated.
“Computer imaging can provide a good approximation of the look of a breast enlargement. But San Jose women need to pay attention both to what looks right and what feels right,” he explains. “The visual balance is extremely important, but a woman will be living with her new breasts for years, and I do think she should have some idea of how they will weigh and move.”
In his breast augmentation consultations, Dr. Lepore has his patients place different implant “sizers” in a bra that is the size they want to fill, then “try out” the various implant sizes. This process helps women see how their breasts will look and feel during everyday activities, and gives them a more practical awareness of the weight of the implants as well as the difference in feel between silicone and saline.
“Some breast implant companies are even offering at-home implant ‘kits’ that cost about $50, and allow a patient to try out implants in the comfort of her own home,” adds Dr. Lepore. However, he notes that trying implants at home can provide a less reliable preview when the wrong type or design of bra is used. “In my opinion, the best way to get an accurate idea of your breast augmentation outcome is to try on implants in person, with the guidance of a qualified surgeon.”
Finding your ideal breast volume is just the first step toward a more flattering breast shape. Request a free cosmetic consultation with Dr. Lepore online to learn more, or call his office at (408) 356-4241 to schedule your appointment.