preparing for surgery

Aug 09, 2012

Preparing for Surgery: Boosting Your Chances of a Beautiful Outcome

Before you have breast augmentation, there's a lot you can do to ensure a great outcome. Your plastic surgeon will give you a list of tasks to complete before surgery, like scheduling an exam with your primary doctor and arranging a preoperative mammogram. Your surgeon will also give you prescriptions for pain medication, antibiotics and herbal supplements to take after surgery. Any positive changes that you make in your diet, exercise routines or lifestyle can prevent surgical complications and promote a healthy recovery.

Preparing Your Body


If you smoke, make every effort to quit.

Giving up cigarettes is one of the most important things you can do to prepare for breast augmentation. The nicotine in cigarettes constricts your blood vessels, which slows blood flow to your tissues and impairs incision healing. Smoking can also increase your blood pressure, which may pose a risk during surgery. Many plastic surgeons won't perform breast augmentation until a patient has been smoke-free for three or four weeks and displays a commitment to quitting.

Eat foods that promote healing.

Foods rich in the following nutrients will help your body build new tissues, fight infection and recover more quickly after surgery:

  • Lean protein: Fish, chicken, egg whites, legumes, low-fat dairy products, tofu
  • Vitamin A or beta-carotene: Liver, eggs, sweet potatoes, carrots, squash, pumpkin, kale, spinach, romaine lettuce
  • Vitamin C: Citrus fruits, berries, papaya, melon, bell peppers, tomatoes, broccoli, cauliflower
  • Zinc: Nuts, wheat germ, pumpkin seeds, watermelon, shellfish, chicken, pork

If you're deficient in certain vitamins or minerals, your primary care doctor may suggest that you take supplements. Drink plenty of water in the days before your surgery so that your skin will be well hydrated and supple.

Don't forget to exercise.

In the days before your breast augmentation, you'll have a million things to do, but for the best outcome, try to keep up with your fitness routine. Exercise will help you stay relaxed and maintain a healthy blood pressure. 

Preparing Your Home


Arrange transportation and supervision.

You'll need to have a friend or family member drive you home from the hospital after surgery and stay with you for at least 24 hours to make sure there aren't any complications. Having a partner, best friend or sister at your side can be a lifesaver when you're dealing with post-surgical discomfort.

Get the cleaning, shopping and laundry out of the way.

For one to two days after breast augmentation, you may not be able to do much around the house. You'll feel much more comfortable after surgery if you've taken care of all the chores.

Get ready for a comfortable recovery.

Stock up on wound care supplies, two or three compression bras, clean towels and comfy clothes before you leave for the hospital, so that you can relax and focus on healing when you get home.