Breast augmentation is one of the most popular cosmetic procedures, with more than 400,000 women and teenagers undergoing it every year. Even though this surgery is common, women still have a lot of questions about it, including what the associated costs are. A quick online search will tell you that surgery can range between $5,000 and $10,000. How can you determine what the procedure will cost YOU?
The tricky part to answering the question of, “How much does breast augmentation cost?” is that each person is unique, so each procedure is unique as well. This is what makes it difficult to determine how much breast augmentation surgery will cost any one person. What we can do is break down the main factors that affect price so that you have a better understanding of what to expect.
What Factors Influence Breast Augmentation Cost?
First, let’s explore the various factors that affect pricing. We recommend choosing your ideal circumstances and then making modifications from there based on price, if necessary. You don’t want to make decisions based on the bottom line and end up unhappy with your breast implants.
Type of Implant
There is a difference in cost between silicone implants and saline implants. Silicone implants are more expensive because their parts are more costly to manufacture and distribute compared to saline. On the other hand, saline implants are cheaper to produce and distribute, lowering the overall cost for the implants.
Dr. Shahin Javaheri can help you determine which option is best, but here is a brief breakdown on these two choices:
- Silicone breast implants. Silicone implants are filled with a silicone. Women often prefer silicone because they say it feels more like real breasts. Under the FDA guidelines, women must be 22 years old to get silicone implants.
- Saline breast implants. Saline implants are filled with sterile salt water (saline). They are soft and contoured just as silicone implants are, so it really comes down to preference. Saline-filled implants are available to anyone over the age of 18.
Other possible breast implant options include structured saline breast implants, gummy bear breast implants, round breast implants and smooth breast implants. Dr. Shahin Javaheri does not use textured breast implants because of their association with large cell lymphoma.
Where you live also affects your surgical costs. Typically, cosmetic surgeries that are done in large, metropolitan areas cost more than those done in smaller cities and geographic regions. This is due to the fact that large cities tend to be more expensive and have a higher cost of living, as well as a higher demand for qualified surgeons. This translates to higher prices for just about everything, including surgeon fees, operating room costs and anesthesia costs.
The surgeon you select to perform your breast augmentation surgery will have their own costs. Typically, surgeons with extensive experience, high credentials and specialized training will charge more than those with less experience and training. This is not to say that the best surgeon is the most expensive surgeon, but rather that you can expect to pay for higher levels of expertise.
While we’re on this topic, we do want to make it clear that you should always choose a qualified surgeon who is board-certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, has experience with breast augmentation surgery and is able to show you with before-and-after pictures. At the end of the day, the best surgeon is the one you feel comfortable with and can help you achieve your goals.
A few other related fees to keep in mind are:
- Surgical facility costs
- Surgeon’s fees
- Post-procedure medications
- Post-surgery garments
Tips for Managing the Costs of Breast Augmentation
Breast augmentation surgery is usually not covered by insurance because it is an elective, cosmetic procedure. Some insurance carriers even exclude breast diseases in patients who have breast implants, so be sure to review your health insurance policy to know what to expect.
The good news is that established, reputable surgeons usually offer ways to make breast implant surgery more affordable. For example, SF Plastic Surgeon offers two types of financing options: Alphaeon Credit and Prosper Healthcare Lending. You can fill out an application on our website with either lender to see what your monthly payments will look like.
You can also pay for your breast implant procedure using a credit card like CareCredit, or you can take out a personal loan from the bank. Unlike credit cards, personal loans have a fixed interest rate and payment schedule. They are often an attractive option for those who are comfortable taking out a loan and have strong credit.
Breast Implant Maintenance Costs
Another thing that many clients don’t think about is the cost to maintain their breast implants. Silicone breast implants require maintenance because they can have a “silent rupture”, meaning that the implant ruptures without showing any symptoms.
To ensure this doesn’t happen, it’s recommended to have an MRI done three years following your procedure and then every two years after that. If the implant ruptures, you’ll need surgery to remove the implant shell and leaked silicone.
MRIs are not needed for saline implants because you will know if these implants leak. The saline will leak out quickly, usually over the course of a few days, and then the breast will look deflated. You will need to see your surgeon to have the implant fixed, but you do not need to pay for MRIs.
Schedule a Consultation with Dr. Shahin Javaheri
As you can see, many factors influence the overall cost of a breast augmentation surgery. To determine how much your procedure will cost in San Francisco, contact SF Plastic Surgeon today. Dr. Shahin Javaheri offers free, comprehensive consultations, so you will have all the information you need to make an informed decision.
Common FAQs about Breast Augmentation Surgery
Below you’ll find the most common questions we hear from clients and our responses.
According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, the average cost of breast augmentation surgery is $3,824. This is the base fee and does not include anesthesia, operating room expenses or other related expenses. During your consultation, make sure the following costs are included in your quote:
– Implant type. Silicone implants have a higher price tag than saline implants.
– Anesthesia costs. The anesthesiologist will keep you comfortable during the procedure.
– Surgeon expertise. Board-certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, experienced surgeons usually charge more.
– Facility fees. Breast implant surgery requires a sterile surgical venue and equipment.
– Recovery expenses. This includes medications and a medical support bra.
– Additional procedures. Any additional procedures you’re having done (breast lift, nipple repositioning) should also be added at this time.
At SF Plastic Surgeon, we are as honest and transparent as possible. The estimate you receive is inclusive – we will not tack on anesthesia costs, hospital fees or medical tests. Your estimate is based on your body type, where the implants will be placed, the type of implant you prefer and if you want a lift as well.
Silicone and saline breast implants have an outer silicone shell but different materials inside. Saline implants are filled with sterile salt water, while silicone implants are filled with silicone. Many women feel that silicone breast implants look and feel more natural, so it’s a more popular choice. But both types of implants are safe, come in a variety of sizes and can look natural and beautiful with the right plastic surgeon.
In terms of price, saline implants are cheaper than silicone implants. The price difference can be between $300-$1,000 for the initial surgery. Silicone implants also have higher maintenance costs between which they can leak without you knowing. Therefore, experts recommend having an MRI done 3 years after the procedure and every year after that.
In San Francisco, the average cost for breast augmentation is between $7,000 and $12,000. This is slightly higher than the national average, mostly because San Francisco is a large, expensive city. In fact, it has one of the highest costs of living in the United States, resulting in higher prices for surgeon fees, facility costs and more.
Probably not. Most women pay for breast augmentation surgery out of pocket because their health insurance does not cover elective, cosmetic procedures. The only time insurance will pay for breast implants is if you had a mastectomy due to breast cancer.
Another thing to be aware of is that insurance may not cover complications from the breast surgery, such as a leaking implant or infection. You will also be required to pay for your MRIs (for silicone implants only), which are around $2,000.
To ensure you have an accurate idea of what breast implants will cost you, be sure to speak with your insurance and ask the following questions:
– Are any costs of my breast implant surgery covered?
– Will getting implants affect my rates or coverage?
– If I have complications, will they be covered?
– What happens if I develop breast cancer or other problems down the road? Will they be covered?
– Are any of the diagnostic tests (MRIs, mammograms) covered?
Want to know if you’re a good candidate for a breast augmentation? Schedule an online consultation with board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Shahin Javaheri in San Francisco, CA. Call (415) 923-3800.