“My BREAST JOB nightmare!”

One woman’s search for discount breast surgery has ruined her life and made her breasts look worse.

Portrait of Tammy Strobel
Photos: Nick Scott/Bauersyndication.com.au
Photos: Nick Scott/Bauersyndication.com.au

One woman’s search for discount breast surgery has ruined her life and made her breasts look worse

When Skye Wheatley headed off to Thailand last January she was excited because she was getting a budget breast job, after years of feeling self-conscious about her naturally lop-sided breasts. She flew off feeling “beyond excited” to be finally getting “the cleavage of her dreams” – and if you look at her social media accounts it seems to have worked, because there are plenty of photos of her confidently posing in skimpy outfits.

But the photos don’t tell the real story. Because Skye reveals that in real life, her breast implants are not what she wants. In fact, they have left her feeling emotionally devastated.

“I wanted to get my breasts augmented so they would be symmetrical – my right breast was a whole cup size smaller than the left one. Now, my breasts look fine in clothes. But they are really terrible underneath because I have a double bubble effect in the right breast, and the breasts are still different sizes. I am even more self-conscious now.”

Skye flew to Thailand to get her breast augmentation. She asked surgeons to transform her asymmetrical 10B and 10C breasts into matching D-cups.

“The medical staff I consulted there told me they would be able to get my breasts how I wanted, but two days after the surgery, I saw my breasts in the mirror and they looked so different to what I had hoped for,” says Skye.

Now, one year after the surgery she is so disappointed with her breast surgery she is preparing to get her implants removed.

What is more, she’s decided to warn others about the potential dangers of breast implants – especially when you try and get them on the cheap, possibly abroad. So we asked Skye some tough questions:

Why did you decide to get implants?

“My right breast was a B-cup size and the left was a C-cup. I felt they looked weird. So I wanted to get them sorted out. I did it for me.”

What happened when you got to Thailand?

“I had the consultation and was told that they would put a certain amount of filling in my left breast and a higher amount in the right breast to even out their sizes.”

How did you feel after the surgery?

“I woke up in so much pain. I had no idea the breast procedure would be so painful for me. It felt like a massive truck had been dropped on my chest. I was in a hospital for two days after the surgery with the bandages on and I found it all so traumatic. I could not even get up to go to the toilet. I was in so much pain.”

How did your mother feel about you getting the breast operation?

“She begged me not to do it. I did not really do much research, I did not pay enough attention to the possible complications and what could go wrong. I wish I had gotten a few different opinions first. If you’ve got naturally symmetrical breasts, perhaps such an operation is easier, but my operation was more complex.”

What was it like getting the bandages off?

“When I finally got to take the bandages off, I gasped and said, ‘Look at this lump in my breast!’ I was told, ‘That is fine, and it will go away in a month. You just need to massage it.’ The surgeon was confident that once a bit of time passed, and I wore my compression bra and did all the massages, the lump in my right breast would go and everything would be perfect.”

The surgeon you used told us you didn’t follow recommendations for post-operative care. Did you do everything they told you to do?

“Yes, I did wear the special compression bra, and I did all the massages, but the ‘bubble’ effect in my right breast just did not go away. After a few more months, it was getting worse, so they told me to come back and they would fix it… but I did not have the money to travel overseas to see the surgeon.”

What are you doing now?

“I have since spoken to other surgeons who have told me that both implants need to be taken out and possibly done again. This operation has ruined my confidence. I had such high hopes but was devastated.”

So will you get the implants taken out?

“Yes, I can’t wait to have them taken out of my body. The rippling is really bad and I’ve got what looks like air bubbles in one breast so it looks like ‘a double-bubble boob’. I do not know if I want new breast implants because that would be so stressful. I just want my natural breasts back, for a while.”

Are you worried about having the breast implants removed?

“Yes, because when they are taken out, I will have stretched skin on my breasts. And my nipples will never be the same because now they have stretched so much. I will not put anything else put back in, if that is what the doctors recommend. Now I just want my breasts to look normal. I do not like how big they are now and I get random chest pains quite a lot. I can’t even exercise and do things like push-ups because my breasts get so sore.”

If you could wind back the clock, how would you do things differently?

“Seriously, I wish I had listened to my mother when she begged me not to do it. She hates to see me going through this. If I could go back, I would prefer to have my old breasts. When anyone tells me they want to get their breasts enlarged I say, ‘Do not do it’. It is hell to have this going on in your body and not being able to do anything about it.”

What would you say to women who are thinking about going abroad in search of cheaper cosmetic surgery?

“I would recommend they do such an operation locally, because if anything goes wrong, the surgeon will be able to fix it more easily.”

Skye says she’s self-conscious about the lumps and dents surgery left in her breasts.
Skye says she’s self-conscious about the lumps and dents surgery left in her breasts.

'I would need to see the patient first, but based on these photos, I would probably take the implant out, try to repair the crease, let it settle and then maybe start again in six to 12 months’ time. This is a difficult case and may not be fixable.'
– Dr Craig Rubinstein, plastic surgeon and breast augmentation specialist on his opinion on photos of Skye’s breasts with her permission.