What is calf augmentation? Why are calf implants used?
Attractiveness is all about proportions. A shapely figure which is proportionate will catch the eye. Calf augmentation with calf implants is a very popular procedure, which creates cosmetic fullness in the lower limb and can help those people who, even after extensive muscular development, can’t achieve the calf muscle toning they desire.
Calf augmentation is best suited for lower leg sculpting, and also can correct muscle imbalance as a result of both physical and congenital defects (“skinny/chicken” legs, bow-leggedness, clubfoot, polio, disproportionate calf development). Calf implants of a variety of shapes, sizes, and contours, are inserted over the existing calf muscles – gastrocnemius and soleus muscles – to achieve expected results.
The calf lift surgeons at Advanced Aesthetics are skilled and experienced in calf lift surgery and can provide you with well-sculpted legs.
Who should have a calf augmentation done?
Anybody who is not happy with the size and shape of his calf muscles to the point that they avoid wearing garments that expose their legs is a good candidate for calf augmentation. For many, the calves are a difficult area to gain muscle and shape from exercise or lifting weights.
Calf implants can also be used to correct deformities resulting from injury or nerve diseases that result in muscle deterioration. Such deformities include polio, club foot, spina bifida etc. Generally, anyone in average physical condition or good health and with realistic expectations can be a candidate for calf augmentation surgery.
What kind of calf implants are used for the surgery?
A critical element in determining the right size and shape is based on the skill of the surgeon who can assess the proportions correctly, and properly sculpt and place the implant, thereby anticipating any changes after the surgery.
Silicone gel implants are usually used for calf augmentation. Silicone-gel filled calf implants usually come in symmetrical a cigar-shaped size with volume ranges from 50-220cc. Many are also available in anatomical sizes (asymmetrical), where the upper portion of the implant is usually larger in volume than the lower section. Most silicone-gel implants have a shell that is composed of silicone elastomers (medically approved grade), and a volumetric gel that is made of cohesive silicone, so it won’t migrate to other areas if the implant is somehow ruptured.
Sometimes, depending on the size of the patient’s ankle, circumferential liposuction will also be performed at the close of the procedure to sculpt the areas above the ankles and subcutaneously above the calf muscles to enhance the overall look of the leg.
Either two separate implants or a one-piece implant can be used for calf augmentation. Having two implants creates a more natural look for the results, but one-piece calf augmentation implants can be used for reconstruction surgeries.
Are there any risks or complications?
As with any operation there are certain risks. The most common risks include bleeding, infection, nerve and/or muscle damage, slippage, asymmetry and scarring. Although these events are usually infrequent, they sometimes can occur. These will be discussed with you during the consultation for your procedure.
What is the progress and healing period?
Surgery to place calf implants typically require about a couple of hours, but this depends on the number of implants being inserted. These implants which may be one to each leg or two depending on the desired effect are placed through small incisions in the creases behind the knee. A person may desire to have only the inner head of the muscle enlarged, the outer head, or both. The result is that the existing musculature is made to appear larger and more defined.
The recovery period can be divided into short-term surgical recovery and long-term cosmetic recovery. The surgical recovery is the first week or so following the procedure itself. During this time the person is instructed to walk around but when lying or sitting to have the legs elevated which reduces swelling and, therefore, reduces discomfort.
After two days the dressings are removed and the person is encouraged to begin a more vigorous routine of walking around. This allows the muscles to start becoming accustomed to having the implants present and allows the skin of the legs to start stretching and feeling more comfortable. After the dressings are removed the person may take short daily showers. After the first week or so the person usually is beginning to feel more comfortable walking greater distances even if it is walking a little stiff-legged. This generally begins the long-term recovery phase.
It is during the long-term recovery phase which begins a couple to three weeks after surgery that more normal walking begins and the skin begins to stretch and loses its shiny appearance. There may be some slight bruising around the incisions and this begins to disappear.
Will there be scars?
Yes, but they probably won’t be noticeable. Your surgeon will make every effort to keep incisions as minimal as possible and try to hide them in the natural lines and creases of your skin. The scars will fade over time and become barely noticeable.
How long do calf implants last?
The silicone used in calf implants should last a lifetime, but this is new technology, and, therefore, has not been tested for a lifetime in the human body. The only reason a calf implant might have to be taken out and replaced is due to rupture or infection, and this would be an unusual occurrence.
Can I play sports like football after calf augmentation surgery?
After you have completely healed, your calf implants are usually very sturdy and cannot get damaged by blunt trauma; unless you sustain a deep laceration of your leg directly over the implants. However you should refrain from any strenuous activity. Wearing shoes with 1 to 2 inch heels helps the muscles to stay as relaxed as possible.
When will I be able to see the results?
The results are immediate although this varies with the type of operation being performed. It also depends on the individual as some people bruise easily, while others don’t. Generally there will be swelling and some bruising after surgery. Both will usually disappear over a week or two. The final optimal result can usually be appreciated a few months after surgery.
Before and Afters Results
* Disclaimer: Results May Differ From Person to Person. No individual result should be seen as typical
Start here, by making an appointment with Dr. Ashish
Dr. Ashish Davalbhakta (Chief Aesthetics Plastic Surgeon) is available from Mon- Sat for a virtual video consultation or an in-clinic consultation.