Breast Implants (Augmentation Mammaplasty, Saline/Silicone Implants, Fat Transfer) - San Diego, CA*

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If you are dissatisfied with the size of your breasts it can be difficult to feel attractive and feminine. You might wish nature had given you more, and often, pregnancy or weight loss can leave your breasts smaller than before. Breast augmentation by triple board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Richard Chaffoo has given many San Diego and La Jolla, CA women the natural-looking curves and fullness they desire to help them enjoy life with self-assured confidence. Choosing to undergo cosmetic surgery is an exciting, but serious decision. It's important to feel comfortable and confident about your choice of plastic surgeon. Many women choose Dr. Richard Chaffoo at La Jolla Plastic Surgery because he focuses on their goals and strives to exceed their expectations with natural looking improvements. San Diego Breast Augmentation Specialist, Dr. Richard Chaffoo, is a highly qualified and experienced plastic surgeon, who specializes in breast enhancement surgery. He takes the time up front to reassure his patients and answer all their questions so they feel comfortable and confident that their breast augmentation procedure will give them the enhancements they envision for themselves.

Breast Implant Options

If you are considering breast augmentation, you have many options when it comes to breast implants. San Diego and La Jolla women can trust plastic surgeon Dr. Richard Chaffoo to share his experience and honest advice when they are choosing the right implants for their goals. Dr. Chaffoo will support, inform, and guide you all the way, helping you make the right choice for your cosmetic goals, lifestyle, and body type.

Implant Material

The patients who visit Dr. Chaffoo for breast augmentation from San Diego and La Jolla can choose saline or silicone breast implants. Both types are FDA-approved and each has its own benefits. Dr. Chaffoo can also perform fat transfer breast augmentation for patients, who want a small size change.

  • Saline implants are filled after they are inserted and therefore require very small incisions. The volume can be adjusted after the implants are placed, making them a flexible option. However, this type of implant is more likely to show wrinkling and rippling.
  • Silicone implants provide a soft, doughy texture that most patients say feels more like natural breast tissue. Dr. Chaffoo is proud to offer Natrelle® cohesive gel (gummy bear) implants, the only 5th generation silicone gel implant approved by the FDA (Food and Drug Administration). This line provides an expanded selection of sizes and shapes, and studies have indicated that these implants may provide a superior level of safety and lower incidence of complications.
  • Fat transfer breast augmentation is best if you want a small increase in breast size and you have excess fat in other areas of your body. Dr. Chaffoo can use liposuction to remove fat from your body (typically the stomach, hips, or thighs) and carefully re-inject the purified fat into the breasts for a natural-looking result.

Other Options

To be satisfied with your breast augmentation results, there are other aspects of your breast implants that you will need to choose, including:

  • Shape — implants can either be round or contoured (also called teardrop or gummy bear). Round implants tend to improve upper fullness of the breasts and enhance cleavage.
  • Texture — describes the outer surface of the implant, which can be either smooth or textured.
  • Profile — specifies the amount the implant projects from the chest wall. Available options are low, moderate, and high profile.
  • Diameter — can be selected to fit the width of the patient's chest to ensure the breasts don't extend too far out into the armpits.
  • Size — is a personal decision. To give you the breast size you want, Dr. Chaffoo will account for your existing breast tissue when determining implant size or fill volume (cc). Because bra cup size is not fully standardized, it's not a reliable measure of breast size.

Dr. Chaffoo will take the time to explain each of these options to you and recommend the combination that will consider your specific goals, as well as your anatomy and lifestyle.

Before Surgery

Your initial complimentary consultation with Dr. Chaffoo is a time to share your goals, ask questions, and have your concerns addressed. During this visit, he will:

  • Obtain a complete medical history and perform a physical exam
  • Review breast implant options
  • Discuss risks and recovery
  • Determine whether you would benefit from a breast lift instead of, or in addition to, breast augmentation

During your physical examination, Dr. Chaffoo will evaluate your breasts and chest wall to ensure you are a candidate for breast augmentation. Remember that it is normal for the breasts to have some asymmetry. This may involve a difference in the size, shape, or width of either breast, position of the nipple, and differences in breast volume. Furthermore, there may be differences within the chest wall including mild scoliosis or curvature of the spine and variations in the shape of the sternum or breastbone, called pectus carinatum and pectus excavatum. Dr. Chaffoo will point these factors out to you during the initial complimentary consultation so you can make your best implant decisions. Careful measurements will be made of the nipple position, nipple diameter, and position of the breast fold as there is considerable variation from one breast to another and from one patient to another.

It is important to carefully note your existing breast anatomy so that you can have realistic expectations about the outcome of your surgery. While some asymmetries such as nipple position can be corrected during surgery, many of the other asymmetries will remain after breast augmentation and would not have been noticed by the patient prior to surgery.

The amount of cleavage is determined in large part by the position of the breast on the chest wall. In other words, if the breasts sit relatively close together, then cleavage can be easily created. However, if the breasts sit relatively farther apart on the chest wall with a relatively large sternum or breast bone, then the amount of cleavage will be less. Breast augmentation will make the breasts larger, but not move their position on the chest wall.

To help his San Diego and La Jolla patients choose the breast implants that will provide the results they want, Dr. Chaffoo provides implant "sizers." You will be given the opportunity to see how you look by placing various sizes of these saline and silicone implants in your bra. We recommend that you wear or bring along a form fitting shirt to this appointment to get the best visual representation of your results.

Regardless of which implants you choose, you can be assured that Dr. Chaffoo has the training and experience to help you safely achieve the natural and lasting results that you desire. Dr. Chaffoo carefully chooses the implants he offers, selecting only products with superior warranties, longevity, and outstanding safety records. With all the knowledge gained during your breast augmentation consultation, you will understand your options and be in the position to make an informed decision.

Surgical Technique

Dr. Chaffoo performs breast augmentation as an outpatient procedure that takes approximately 1 – 2 hours to complete. He typically places the incisions along the breast crease or around the nipples and then creates a pocket for each breast implant. Often the most natural looking results are achieved by placing the implants under the chest muscles; however, in certain cases the implants are placed between the breast tissue and the chest muscles.

As a skilled plastic surgeon, Dr. Chaffoo takes many steps during surgery to help a patient achieve a more flattering breast size and contour, while also adhering to the objectives discussed during the complimentary consultation. At the time of surgery, Dr. Chaffoo places sterile surgical sizers intra-operatively and the operating table is placed in various positions, both flat and at an incline. The breasts are then examined from several angles to determine the optimum implant size. Once the optimal size is determined, the sterile surgical sizers are removed and replaced with the permanent implant. The sizers help Dr. Chaffoo confirm that the desired breast implant size will achieve the patient's objectives.

Dr. Chaffoo believes that taking these steps for his breast augmentation patients gives them the most accurate breast volume and shape. In addition, he has an extensive gallery of breast enlargement photos that show real patient results. He encourages you to review the cases in his photo gallery and even bring pictures from the Internet or magazines with you during the complimentary consultation to help communicate your desired breast size and shape. The extra effort that goes into the planning of your breast augmentation is part of the process that allows you to achieve your aesthetic goals.


You can go a long way toward preventing complications by following Dr. Chaffoo's recovery instructions, which may include:

  • Give yourself ample time to recover. Enjoy the opportunity to rest, sleep, and relax as much as you need.
  • Don't drink alcohol or smoke (for at least 2 weeks).
  • Don't drive (for about the first week).
  • Take antibiotics if they are prescribed.
  • Sleep on your back (for the first week).
  • Avoid heavy lifting, raising your arms above your head, or strenuous exercise for about 3 weeks.
  • Wear a support bra if one is given to you (for about a month).

In addition to these guidelines, be sure to follow all of Dr. Chaffoo's post-surgical instructions very carefully. By being a good patient, you are actively participating in the success of your breast augmentation.


The final results of breast augmentation typically become visible 2 – 9 months after surgery when the swelling has subsided and the implants have settled into their final position. You should continue to schedule check-ups with Dr. Chaffoo every 2 – 3 years so he can evaluate the status of your implants and help you determine when it is time to exchange or remove your implants. Patients may notice some changes in their breasts due to pregnancy, breast feeding, significant weight changes, hormonal changes, and natural aging.

Expected Costs

During the initial consultation, Dr. Chaffoo will be able to provide a better cost estimate based on your goals and options, but most breast augmentation surgeries cost about $6,500 - $7,500. Since breast implants are a cosmetic procedure, it is usually not covered by health insurance, but Dr. Chaffoo can help patients learn more about medical financing options.

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Average Cost  
$6,500 - $7,500
Recovery Time  
2 - 4 Weeks
Average Procedure Time  
1 - 2 Hours
Post-op Follow-up  
Procedure Recovery Location  
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Breast Augmentation FAQs

Conditions Treated?

The women who visit Dr. Chaffoo in La Jolla (San Diego, CA) for breast augmentation have a variety of personal reasons for considering the procedure. Reasons for choosing this procedure often include one or more of the following:

  • Increasing the size of naturally small or underdeveloped breasts
  • Replacing breast volume lost due to pregnancy, breast feeding, or weight loss
  • Achieving symmetry between uneven breasts
  • Attaining a more balanced figure

Combining Treatment?

While it can be challenging to take time out for surgery and recovery, having a single recovery period can help you make the most of your downtime. Dr. Chaffoo can combine breast augmentation with other procedures such as liposuction to sculpt areas of stubborn fat. Another popular option for women who have lost weight or had children is a tummy tuck to remove excess fat and skin and tighten stretched abdominal muscles. At your private complimentary consultation, Dr. Chaffoo will review all the options that can help you feel more feminine and confident.

Potential Risks?

For the most in-depth information about complications and an assessment of your specific risk profile with breast augmentation, be sure to ask Dr. Chaffoo plenty of questions during your complimentary consultation. La Jolla and San Diego, CA breast augmentation patients should be aware of the following possible complications:

  • Infection is uncommon and can be treated with antibiotics.
  • Loss of sensation is usually temporary and restricted to the nipple and skin.
  • Scarring can be concealed and minimized by a skilled surgeon, but the result will depend on many factors, such as incision method and the individual patient's skin type.

There are other, more general risks that can be associated with surgery of any kind. Dr. Chaffoo will discuss these with you fully during your initial complimentary consultation.

Future Implant Concerns?

  • Capsular contracture is one of the more common complications of breast augmentation. When capsular contracture occurs, excessive scar tissue will develop and squeeze the implant, causing the breasts to become hard, visibly unbalanced, and/or physically uncomfortable.
  • Wrinkling is more common with saline implants. The implant may appear to have a wrinkled texture on the upper portion of the breast when viewed from certain angles.
  • Asymmetry is usually not obvious as the human body is not perfectly symmetrical. As the implants settle into place following surgery, one may rest slightly higher or lower than the other.
  • Calcium deposits can develop several years and may make mammograms more difficult to perform.

Each breast implant type has its own safety profile with unique physical characteristics that affect the chance of rupture or other complications. Studies show that the Natrelle® line of cohesive gel breast implants, now offered by Dr. Chaffoo, may have a lowered risk of complications. Ask Dr. Chaffoo about these newly available implants.

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*Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary from person to person. Images may contain models.