When you are opting for any surgical procedure, it is natural to want to know about the process and how it will be performed. Breast augmentation procedures are careful surgeries that keep in mind the patient’s needs, their demands, and the type of result they are looking for. For this purpose, many surgical clinics provide the patient with the customization of incision placement, the type of implant, and any specific result the patient will want after the procedure.
Breast augmentation incisions are surgical incisions placed at a minimally noticeable location with the ability to heal spontaneously with no visible scar formation. Not only this but factors like the type and shape of the implant, anatomy of the patient, surgeon’s personal choices, and patient’s expectation with the procedure also come into play while choosing a breast augmentation incision. Normally, based on the aforementioned criteria, patients have 3 common choices for breast augmentation incisions. These are:
- Transaxillary incision
- Areolar incision
- Submammary groove
We understand that breast augmentation is a sensitive decision and making the right choice before and during this procedure is very important. Our main aim is to make sure that every patient understands the procedures they are about to go through, their alternatives, advantages and disadvantages of one over another, and what to expect after each procedure so they can make an informed decision about their body and feel comfortable about their choices.
Breast Incision #1: Tranaxillary Incision (Armpit)
Transaxillary breast augmentation incision is the type of incision done in the armpit region for maximum cosmetic benefits and to prevent any kind of scar in the breast tissue. It is ideal for saline implants and for women who have never had breast augmentation before. It is an advanced surgical technique and requires excellent surgical skills for the best results. In this breast augmentation incision, a cut is made in the natural fold of the axilla. From there a pathway to the breast is created along the chest wall and a pocket for the breast implant is created. This pocket can either be in front of the muscle or behind the muscle (Retropectoral implants) The incision for this procedure is small as it can also be done endoscopically and it usually heals with minimal scarring.
Advantages- Like all other procedures trans-axillary breast augmentation incision has its own set of pros and cons. The main advantage of this type of incision are:
- No visible scar on the breast as this incision is entirely based on the armpit.
- Preservation of breast function- As this incision completely spares the breast, women can breastfeed after the procedure if they wish to do so making it the ideal incision for future mothers.
Disadvantages-The main disadvantages of this incision are:
- Requires high surgical skills.
- Doesn’t provide much freedom of where the implant can be placed and surgeons have less control over its position.
- The scar can still be seen in sleeveless tops.
- Location can’t be used for future surgeries.
Breast Incision #2: Areolar Incision (Nipple)
In this procedure, an incision is made between the areola, which is the darker part of the nipple, and the skin of the breast. Normally this incision is made in the lower part of the areola and a pocket is created for the breast implants, either above or behind the muscle.
- Minimal scarring. Most of the time this scar heals well as compared to the other breast augmentation incisions. The scar sits between the darker area of the breast and the lighter skin which makes it barely noticeable.
- It provides more freedom for implant placement, surgeons can choose the exact location of where to place the implant and control the bleeding.
- If another surgery is required, this incision can be opened again for the surgery.
- It has a greater risk for the inability to nurse a child after the procedure.
- The scar can be prominent if adequate healing is not offered properly.
- Increased risk of altered nipple sensation and contracture formation.
Breast Incision #3: Submammary Groove (Beneath the Breasts)
Inframammary incision is the technique most commonly used by surgeons while performing breast augmentation procedures. An incision is given in the breast fold below the breasts and the pocket for the implant is visualized directly.
- The scar can be easily hidden under the breast mass, by a proper bra or bikini.
- Gives the surgeon more control over the placement of implants and bleeding along with wide access and direct visualization of the implant pocket.
- It avoids milk ducts, so nursing is preserved.
- The scar can become prominent by stretching after surgery.
- Breast size cannot be changed later as it can pull the scar upward.