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Breast Implant Placement

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  • June 27, 2016

Picking A Side When It Comes To The Chest Muscle

The pectoralis muscle must be taken into consideration when choosing the ideal cosmetic surgery procedure for breast augmentation. In deciding which side of the chest muscle is right for you, your cosmetic surgeon will explain the reasons for both approaches, then recommend the option he or she feels will achieve your expectations. This will depend on your anatomy, age, lifestyle, and level of comfort.

Under the Muscle

In the cases of women with limited existing breast tissue, a cosmetic surgeon may recommend that the breast implant to be placed under the chest muscle to add to the amount of natural tissue making up their breast. In this procedure, the breast implant is positioned in a pocket between the chest wall and the pectoralis. This placement may interfere less with mammograms and breast feeding, so if those are concerns make sure to discuss this with your plastic surgeon when examining your options.

The option to place the breast implant under the chest muscle can also provide a gradual slope to the upper breast. The pressure of the pectoralis presses down on the top portion of the implant, ensuring that the majority of the breast’s fullness is concentrated at the bottom of the breast. This is considered a more natural-looking shape, avoiding a breast that is “too round” in appearance, particularly where the top of implant sits.

This procedure is generally perceived to be more invasive with a longer recovery time, but it could lessen complications if any future breast lifts are considered.

It is often believed that under the muscle is the best method to prevent sagging.  This is not the case; breasts will sag over time. Implants under the chest muscle will not move lower along with the breast tissue. The chest muscle will also not lower the risk of a rupture of the implant itself. Ruptures can be caused with time as the implant’s membrane ages and weakens.

The length of time a breast implant will last, and maintain its shape and position, is not determined by the type of placement used.

Some women with substantially developed pectoralis muscles, whether they are athletes such as bodybuilders or women who weight train for fitness, have reported dissatisfaction with breast implants placed below the chest muscle. When the muscle contracts during exercise, it also compresses the breast implant. While it does no damage, some women may find it disconcerting or uncomfortable. These are all considerations to bring forward when talking with your cosmetic surgeon.

Over the Muscle

A breast implant can be placed over the chest muscle in the case of women who already have a predetermined amount breast tissue. For example, this placement could be recommended for a woman undergoing a modest breast augmentation with an existing full B-cup or larger, who is also opting for a breast lift. If breast tissue exists, concerns over the slope of the chest or an unnaturally-shaped breast are lessened.  Rather than completely creating the shape of the breast, this procedure can successfully correct sagging and a loss of breast fullness. The result can be a more mature breast appearance, and depending on your expectations, that may be exactly what you’re looking for.

In some cases, women who have had their breast implants moved from under to over the chest muscle have reported being more comfortable with that placement. This option is perceived as being less invasive with a shorter recovery time, but it could complicate future breast lifts.

Each body is different, and realistic expectations depend on every woman’s unique anatomy. Deciding the proper breast implant placement is best discussed with your cosmetic surgeon. If you’d like to further discuss your options for breast augmentation, contact Dr. Adil Ladak’s plastic and cosmetic surgery practice in Edmonton, Alberta, today, and schedule your consultation. 780-407-6691.


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