Breast augmentation and augmentation mammoplasty (colloquially known as a "boob job") are plastic surgery terms for the breast-implant and the fat-graft mammoplasty approaches used to increase the size, change the shape, and alter the texture of the breasts of a woman. As a primary reconstruction, augmentation mammoplasty is applied to effect a post–mastectomy breast reconstruction, the repair of the chest wound consequent to the removal of a cancerous breast; to correct congenital defects of the breast(s); and to correct congenital defects of the chest wall. As an elective, cosmetic surgery, primary augmentation changes the aesthetics – of size, shape, and texture – of healthy breasts.
The surgical implantation approach affects the global augmentation of the breast hemisphere using a breast implant filled with either saline solution or silicone gel; moreover, the surgical augmentation approach can include the application of transplanted autologous skin flaps harvested from the woman's body. The fat-graft transfer approach augments the size and corrects contour defects of the breast hemisphere with grafts of autologous adipocyte fat tissue, drawn from the woman's body.
In a breast reconstruction procedure, within a multistage reconstruction mammoplasty, a tissue expander (a temporary breast implant device) is emplaced and used to prepare (shape and enlarge) the recipient site (implant-pocket) to receive and accommodate the breast implant prosthesis. In a non-implant breast augmentation procedure, some fat-graft injection approaches feature tissue-engineering, which is the pre-operative, external expansion of the tissues of the recipient site to receive the grafts of adipocyte tissue drawn from the woman's body. Nonsurgical approaches to breast augmentation may consist of an externally applied vacuum-device that will expand the tissues of the recipient site. Moreover, in most instances of fat-graft breast augmentation, the increase is of medium volume – usually one brassière cup-size or less – which is usually the physiologic limit allowed by the metabolism of the woman's body