Am I Tuberous?

Hi. I am in need of help. From a young age I have always hated my breast as I have small boobs and one breast that is bigger than the other.Everyone kept telling me it was normal and it happens to a lot of people. I was picked on in school years, and after that I never wanted to wear swimmers. I hated going to the beach nor would I ever take my top off around anyone. I was told they are ok but I could never accept them. I have always been ashamed of my breast which made me very self conscious and lack self esteem, I have never been able to afford breast implants due to having a family when I was young.I also struggled to breast feed with both my children, I was not producing enough milk for them and both only lasted a couple of days before I had to bottle feed.I am now 29 and finally getting a bit more financially secure so I decided I was going to get myself implants. Yay, I was so excited because its been something I have been dreaming about for over 10 years and it means alot to me. I started doing research on different surgeons and getting in contact with many. After a few e-mails back and forth my excitement soon turned into sadness once again after being told that I have quite severe asymmetry as well as tuberosity of my breasts.A couple of them knocked me back as they don't have the qualifications being only cosmetic surgeons and the surgery required was reconstructive and the ones that did, informed me that I am going to need 2 separate surgery's - a BA and a BL. I will also need to see a specialist plastic surgeon although I may qualify for medicare rebates as well as PHI which I didnt have, so it's not going to be as straight forward or in the $7000 price range that I originally budgeted for but that is the only information I have been left with.So after a lot more of my own GOOGLE research I applied for Bupa Budget Hospital Cover. With that though, I have a 12 month waiting period for pre existing conditions which is ok because it will give me time to get all the information I need as well as save money for it and choose the right surgeon for my situation,My questions are:What is your opinion and do you think it's possible to achieve large breasts that are the same size with implants only?Do I have to have a lift as well?If I just need a BA and BL whats the reconstructive part?How much will it cost me and a breakdown of the fees?Can I apply for more than one medicare item numbers for the one procedure like 45558 (I have a 19 month old), 45559 , 45524, 45528, 45545 and could I use one more than once? What will that take off the total cost whatever that may be?My PHI says it covers for: 'NON COSMETIC PLASTIC SURGERY, Public Hospital, Private Hospital, Heart Surgery, Sterilisation, Palliative Care, In-Hospital Rehabilitation, Non Cosmetic Plastic Surgery. ... and that your hospital cover helps pay for all in-patient hospital-related treatments (other than those listed as exclusion or not covered) at Members First, Network Hospitals and Public Hospitals where Medicare pays a benefit. No gap will apply if I choose a Members First or Network Hospital.The standard membership conditions, including waiting periods, are met., so I am not sure what they pay for. I really don't understand and then what do I have to pay for. After that, what are all the total fees involved - surgeon fees, assistant fees, anesthetic fees, implants, etc. I'm really not sure of the complete list of fees.What would be the cheapest option for me? Being a single mum, I may now be more finanically secure than 10 years ago but I still don't have a lot so I need the cheapest option possible?And lastly, is there any way I can get it done through the publc health system ?

loz87 February 15th, 2016 QLD

  • Answer
     Gavin Sandercoe

    Gavin Sandercoe

    32 answers

    Plastic Surgeon
    New South Wales, Australia

    Hi Loz
    Breast asymmetry, and especially with tuberous breasts, is always difficult to get perfect in one operation.Even with perfect planning, your body may not heal completely symmetrically.
    I believe that you will be lucky to be symmetrical without a lift on your right breast. You might be close enough that you are happy, and that is more important than perfection.
    It would be reasonable to aim for C-D cup breasts with different sized implants - I would suggest teardrop/anatomical implants. Even with the precision of intraoperative sizers, it is likely that there will still be some minor differences.
    If Medicare accept your surgeons' application for approval for an item number, then if your level of health insurance covers that item number then you should be covered for the costs of the operating theatre and hospital stay, as well as your implants. Your health fund will contribute a small amount towards the surgeon & anaesthetist's fees. With any luck you should have change from the $7000 you have saved.
    It is almost impossible to get any procedures like this performed in the public hospital setting anymore.
    As you are likely to need touch up procedures, it is wise to choose a surgeon close to your home. You have plenty of choice of Plastic Surgeons that do great breast work in Queensland. You should choose someone with a good reputation amongst other doctors (not just their online presence). 
    Good Luck
    Dr Gavin Sandercoe