There's more to breast augmentation surgery than simply showing up on the scheduled day. Your plastic surgeon will have a complete set of pre-op instructions for you to follow and complete in the days and weeks leading up to your surgery. Here's what you can expect as far as pre-op preparations for your breast implants.

  • Complete your pre-operative blood and medical tests. Your doctor will want to run a series of tests before your breast augmentation, to ensure you're in good enough health to handle the stress of surgery. This battery of tests could include a blood screening, a mammogram and even a stress test, if your doctor is concerned about the health of your cardiovascular system. Leave yourself plenty of time to complete the tests and get the results before your surgery is scheduled.
  • Stop taking medications that can interfere with your healing. Herbal supplements, ibuprofen and aspirin can all affect how your blood clots, so they shouldn't be taken for at least several days before your surgery. Let your surgeon know if you're taking any prescription medications, so they can advise you as to whether they're safe to take in the days leading up to your breast implant surgery.
  • Stop smoking. Smoking decreases the amount of oxygen available throughout your body, and that can slow and complicate your healing process. Most doctors recommend stopping smoking for at least two weeks prior to your surgery and for two weeks afterward to allow your body to recover.
  • Protect your health prior to surgery. Even a simple cold could cause complications with the anesthesia. If you do develop an illness right before your surgery, let your surgeon know. You may need to postpone your breast augmentation until you feel better.
  • Avoiding shaving your armpits. Shaving your armpits could open up little nicks and tears in your skin where bacteria can invade — and this could complicate your surgery and lead to an infection. Most doctors recommend avoiding shaving your armpits for at least 48 to 72 hours prior to your surgery.
  • Fill your prescriptions for post-operative medications. You'll need pain medications and antibiotics immediately following your surgery — and you'll be in no shape to go get the prescriptions yourself. You'll want to get these in advance so you'll be all set as soon as you get home.
  • Gather together anything you'll need for your recovery. Make sure your fridge is well stocked and you have anything else you might need — a good book and magazines, some DVD movies or another special treat — to make your recovery as stress free as possible.
  • Arrange for your ride home and post-operative care. You won't be able to drive yourself home, and you'll need another person available to help monitor your recovery, provide pain medications and call the doctor if there's a problem. Choose a trusted friend or family member, or arrange for a ride and private nurse through your plastic surgeon.
  • Make arrangements to minimize exertion during your recovery. You won't be able to do any lifting, housework or reaching in the days following your surgery (that includes picking up your child!), so make sure someone else will be available to help out during your recovery.
  • Rest up. Surgery is very stressful for your body — getting a good night's sleep in the days leading up to your breast augmentation surgery can help you have a speedy recovery.
  • Give your body a thorough scrub. Ensuring your body is as free of bacteria and other microbes as possible will minimize the chances that you develop an infection around your breast implants. Your doctor may suggest using a special antibacterial soap, or just recommend using your regular cleanser. Be sure to concentrate in the areas where the surgery will take place, including the abdomen, armpits and around and under the breasts.
  • Minimize skin care products and beauty products. These can cause contamination of the surgical site. You should avoid wearing makeup, lotions, perfume, deodorant or other skin care products on the day of your surgery.
  • Dress appropriately for your surgery. Choose clothes that will be comfortable to put back on after the surgery — consider sweat pan