One of our primary goals after your gender confirmation surgery is for you to have a safe and successful recovery. It is important for our surgeons to be able to monitor your progress and make sure you are healing well. In this article, we provide a guideline on how you can follow-up with your surgeon virtually or locally in your area if you are unable to stay near our office in San Francisco for the duration of your breast augmentation top surgery recovery.
Finding a local doctor to help with follow-up care
Finding a local plastic surgeon who specializes in gender-affirming care can be difficult.
For this reason, our surgeons routinely work with patients across the country (and around the world). If you’re an out-of-town patient considering breast augmentation, there are a few extra steps you will have to take to ensure a safe and healthy recovery.
Immediately after surgery, you will be transported to our recovery room for careful monitoring. Most patients wake up feeling groggy and some feel nauseous (due to the anesthesia). It’s also likely that you will experience some discomfort, swelling, and bruising. A combination of prescription pain medication, cold compresses, and elevation will keep you comfortable during your recovery.
Post-operative care is critical during the first few days of recovery, so you will need assistance from a friend or relative. If no one is available for travel, you can also arrange to stay in a post-surgical care facility. During your stay in San Francisco, your surgeon will monitor your progress very carefully. Stitches and surgical dressings are typically removed within a week of surgery before you return home.
Because breast augmentation is a major surgical procedure, you will need to stay in the San Francisco Bay area for at least 10 days before you can safely return home. Flying too soon can increase risk of complications such as a pulmonary embolism or blood clots.
Most airlines have specific regulations regarding flying after major surgery. Check your airline provider’s policies in advance.
Breast augmentation requires several follow-up visits in the weeks and months following surgery. Out-of-town patients can follow up with their surgeon virtually through phone calls, emails, and photographs.
After your initial follow-up, you will have a second follow-up two weeks later. If you are doing fine during your second follow-up, you won’t need another one for 3-6 months, with subsequent visits scheduled on an as-needed basis.
In most cases, there will be very little care necessary after surgery. However, your surgeon would be happy to interact directly with your local primary care provider to ensure that you’re comfortably recovering and can access necessary prescription refills (e.g. pain medication). It’s a good idea to identify a local physician in advance of surgery so that you don’t have to worry about it during your recovery.
Though uncommon, complications following breast augmentation may occur. In these instances, you may need to return to San Francisco to meet with your surgeon in-person.