Breast Augmentation - where is the scar?

I'm interested in getting breast implants but I really don't want the scars to be overly obvious. What are my options?



F, 29, New Jersey

There are 3 basic scar locations for an augmentation surgery.

If you use saline implants, you can have it through your belly button.

If you use gel implants ( which are pre-filled )you can have an incision under your breast in the crease or possibly under your arm. If you use the under arm incision, the implants will need to be placed under the muscle.

Based on your desired results, your PS should recommend size, styles, type of implant, implant placement and incision location.

Dr. Jack Peterson has 1 Breast augmentation before & after:

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Dear Dawnmay, 

There are four sites used for breast implant surgery incisions. One I will discard immediately: the belly button. It is called the TUBA (transumbilical breast augmentation). Yes it can be done that way but why? To avoid a very small scar on or under the breast. I feel the TUBA is a marketing gimmick and even the surgeons who say they do this don't much care for it. You can only use saline implants for the TUBA.

The incision in the axilla (armpit) was popular twenty years ago but has fallen out of favor; even the surgeon who pioneered it now speaks against it. It is awkward and prone to problems positioning the implant. If there is a need for any revision of the original surgery, you cannot do it through this incision. 

An incision on the edge of the areola can be partially disguised by the natural boundary between the dark and light skin there, however, few women have a sharp line as the boundary. Periareolar incisions put a scar on the aesthetic focal point of the breast. If you think about it, that is what draws your attention. The scar would have to be invisible not to be seen, and few scars are. Also, there is more chance of interfering with sensation and breast feeding with this incision. 

The most popular incision is under the breast, in the natural crease there. It places the scar in an inconspicuous place, the scar can be as long as necessary (about an inch for saline implants and 2-3 inches for gel implants), and it makes the surgery easier, thereby improving the chances of a good outcome. In 27 years, I have never had to revise that scar because it was not satisfactory to me or my patient. 

I prefer to make my incision in the fold under the breast.   It is completely hidden and has the least complications associated with it.   It also allows me direct vision of the anatomy as I create the pocket.  The nipple incision has more complications associated with it, the scar can be visible with your shirt off and does not offer the surgeon the same vision of the anatomy at the fold incision I described.  The incision in the arm pit is not worth the discussion.  Avoid it. 

There are different locations for placement of the incision. The 2 most common areas include underneath the breast and around the inferior part of the areola. Less common sites include the axilla( underarm) and the belly button. In our center, as in most center the former 2 locations are used which I believe are preferable to the other locations for different reasons.

Thank you for the question and three various incisions can be used with gel implants and four with saline.  Implants can be placed via an incison next to the belly button "the TUBA" approach if saline and via an inframammary, periareola or axillary with either saline or gel.  More important then incision site is your choice of surgeon so choose wisely

Dr Corbin

Dr. Frederic Corbin has 1 Breast augmentation before & after:

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Scarring is always in the back of ones mind when thinking about surgery.  Where do we hide the scars?  In terms of size, smaller incisions are used to place saline breast implants.  The saline implant comes flat and can be rolled up to the size of a cigar.  Once placed into the body, the implant is then filled with saline to the desired size.  Saline implants can be placed through incisions in the arm pit, belly button (TUBA) or the more traditional lower breast fold (IMF) and the lower nipple (NAC) incisions.  Silicone implants usually require the IMF and NAC incisions.  Each incision pattern carries it's own risks and options.  Care of the incision post surgery is of utmost importance in the final appearance of the scar. Make sure that your surgeon offers incision laser, silicone sheet/tape therapy and 3 month follow up care as part of your initial breast augmentation package. 

Dr. James White has 2 Breast augmentation (Silicone breast implants) before & afters:

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Breast implants placed through an under the breast position is a good location for the scar. The least visible scar is in the arm pit but this is not a very common site for many surgeons. See a BCPS when you're interested in taking the next step 

Dr. Carlos Burnett has 2 Breast augmentation before & afters:

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Implant scars can be placed in the axilla or armpit, below the breast in what's called the inferior mammary fold, around the nipple Known as periareolar, through the incisions for another procedure such as a lift or tummy tuck, or through a remote access Like the umbilicus. Most surgeons do not support the remote access incisions as they void the warranty of the implant and achieving symmetry is more difficult

Dr. Christopher Park has 3 Breast augmentation before & afters:

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Dear Dawn,

Thank you for the question. The scars for breast augmentation can be in the lower breast fold and less than 4 cm or on the areola. 

Most scars heal very well and are not so obvious.

  • Breast Augmentation - where is the scar, submitted image.Breast Augmentation - where is the scar, submitted image.

Dr. Dana Khuthaila has 4 Breast augmentation, Breast lift before & afters:

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