Breast enlargement: Joanna's story

Joanna Lumb, 30, from Huddersfield, had breast augmentation surgery at Spire Leeds Hospital under the care of consultant plastic surgeon, Ms Grainne Bourke.

Joanna is one of a growing number of women having cosmetic surgery to help restore their pre-pregnancy shape. Following the birth of her daughter, Lila, two years ago, Joanna was upset to see the toll it had taken on her body. “I was happy with my shape before pregnancy, however, after childbirth I lost the baby weight and my breasts disappeared,” she said.

When she returned from holiday, Joanna talked to a friend who had recently had breast implants, who recommended a cosmetic surgeon; Grainne Bourke at Spire Leeds Hospital. After doing some research Joanna made an appointment to see her.

“I had a long list of questions and Grainne went through them with me. She then recommended that I go away and think about it before making a decision although I was pretty certain at that point and soon after that I returned and booked the procedure.”

Consultant plastic and reconstructive surgeon, Grainne Bourke, performed the breast augmentation procedure at Spire Leeds Hospital and increased her size from an A to a D cup.

“The care was excellent. I’m an anxious patient and because of this they moved me up to the first on the operating list on the morning of surgery so I would not have to wait around feeling nervous. I was really grateful for that.”

“I wanted a natural shape and chose a teardrop rather than a round implant as I’m quite petite and wanted to look like before I had my daughter, just a little bigger. Grainne helped guide me through the choices about the type of size of implants that would be best for me and I felt total confidence in her advice.”

"Young women have always wanted to get back into pre pregnancy shape and are very motivated - as some celebrity mums are portrayed as achieving this quickly and apparently easily, it does add pressure."

She explained the changes pregnancy can make to the body: “During pregnancy and breast feeding there is a significant increase in the volume of breast tissue. This is a normal process and prepares the breast for the possibility of milk production in the future.

"After pregnancy and breastfeeding as hormones gradually revert to pre-pregnancy levels the breast tissue gradually shrinks. However the breast pocket has been stretched and the shape and appearance of the breast is altered permanently.

“Women tend to either want to restore the breast shape and size they had before having children or they want to maintain the larger breast size they got used to having during pregnancy,” added Grainne Bourke.

Grainne Bourke advises patients to wait at least six months after giving birth and breastfeeding before even considering any type of cosmetic surgery procedure. 

Joanna went home the day after surgery and was back at work after about two weeks. She said she is very happy with the result.

“I chose to have the surgery for myself. It was the right choice for me and I feel like I did it for the right reasons. It’s made me so much happier with my body. My breasts are even better than before I was pregnant and it’s made me feel more confident and feminine.” 

Grainne Bourke added, “Joanna had considered surgery very carefully and was well researched on breast implants and the risks involved with surgery as well as the positive side. This is important as it indicates she took time to weigh up the pros and cons of surgery and made an informed choice to proceed.”