Breast augmentation is a surgical procedure designed to enhance the size, shape, and symmetry of the breasts. This is achieved by placing silicone or saline implants under the breast tissue or chest muscles. A patient’s overall health is a critical factor that can influence the outcome of the procedure. A healthy body is more likely to heal faster and more efficiently, reducing the risk of complications and improving the overall aesthetic result. It’s important to discuss your health history and lifestyle habits with your surgeon prior to the surgery to ensure you are a suitable candidate for the procedure.

Why scarring occurs

Scarring is a natural part of the body’s healing process following any surgical procedure, including breast augmentation. When a surgical incision is made, it causes damage to the skin and underlying tissues. The body responds by producing collagen and other proteins to repair the damage. This process results in the formation of scar tissue, which is different in texture and quality from the surrounding skin. The appearance of this scar tissue is what we commonly refer to as a surgical scar.

Determining factors of scarring

Scarring after breast augmentation surgery can be influenced by several factors. One of the most significant is the technique and skill of the surgeon performing the procedure. A skilled surgeon with experience in breast augmentation will be able to make precise incisions and use advanced techniques to minimize scarring. Other factors that can impact scarring include the patient’s age, skin type, and overall health. It’s important to discuss these factors with your surgeon prior to surgery to gain a better understanding of your individual risk of scarring.

Different types of scarring
There are several types of scars that can develop following breast augmentation surgery. These include keloid scars, which are thick and raised, and hypertrophic scars, which are red and raised but not as extreme as keloids. Atrophic scars, on the other hand, are sunken and can give the skin a pitted appearance. The type of scar that develops can significantly impact the overall appearance and feel of the breasts. For instance, keloid and hypertrophic scars may cause discomfort and can be noticeable under clothing or in swimwear, while atrophic scars can affect the shape and contour of the breasts.
Influence of skin type and tone
Your skin type and tone can significantly impact how your body scars following breast augmentation surgery. For instance, individuals with darker skin tones may be more prone to developing certain types of scars, such as keloid or hypertrophic scars, compared to those with lighter skin. This is due to differences in the way skin of various types and tones responds to injury and inflammation. Understanding your skin type and how it may affect scarring can help you set realistic expectations for your post-surgery appearance.
Effects of age and lifestyle
Your age and lifestyle choices can also influence the way your body scars after surgery. As we age, our skin loses elasticity and its ability to heal effectively, which can result in more noticeable scarring. Lifestyle choices, specifically smoking and sun exposure, have a considerable impact on scarring. Smoking can heavily affect the healing process, leading to worse scarring due to its ability to reduce blood flow and deprive the skin of essential nutrients. Similarly, excessive sun exposure can exacerbate scarring as UV rays can cause scars to darken and become more prominent. To promote optimal healing and minimize scarring, maintaining a healthy lifestyle both before and after surgery is crucial. Avoiding smoking and limiting sun exposure can be significant steps towards better surgical outcomes.
Role of genetics
Genetics can play a significant role in the way your body scars. Some people are genetically predisposed to develop certain types of scars, such as keloid or hypertrophic scars. If you have a family history of problematic scarring, it’s important to discuss this with your surgeon prior to surgery. They may be able to adjust their surgical technique or recommend specific post-operative care measures to minimize your risk of developing similar scars.
Impact of pre-existing medical conditions
Certain pre-existing medical conditions can also influence how your body heals and scars after surgery. For instance, conditions like diabetes can slow the healing process and increase the risk of infection, which can lead to worse scarring. Similarly, immune disorders can impact your body’s ability to heal effectively, potentially leading to more noticeable scars. If you have any pre-existing medical conditions, it’s crucial to discuss them with your surgeon prior to surgery, as they may need to take additional precautions to minimize scarring and ensure a safe recovery.
Understanding the incision methods
There are several incision methods that a surgeon may use during breast augmentation surgery, each with its own potential impact on scarring. These include the inframammary, periareolar, and transaxillary incision methods. The inframammary method involves making an incision in the fold under the breast, the periareolar method involves an incision around the nipple, and the transaxillary method involves an incision in the armpit. The choice of incision method will depend on a variety of factors, including the type of implant, the patient’s anatomy, and the surgeon’s expertise. Your surgeon will discuss these options with you and help you understand the benefits and potential scarring associated with each method.
Effect of implant placement
When considering breast augmentation, the placement of the implant is a decisive factor that influences not just aesthetic outcomes but also the extent and visibility of scarring. The choice between subglandular placement — where the implant is positioned above the pectoral muscle and directly behind the breast tissue — and submuscular placement — where the implant is beneath the pectoral muscle — can alter the scarring profile for each individual.

Subglandular placement may involve incisions along the lower fold of the breast or around the areola, facilitating scars that are less conspicuous. This technique can be especially beneficial for those who prioritize minimal scarring visibility. However, this approach may not be suitable for everyone, as it can sometimes yield a less natural appearance, particularly in individuals with scant natural breast tissue.

Conversely, submuscular placement necessitates incisions that might be more apparent initially, such as those under the breast fold or within the armpit. While these incisions may be more noticeable early on, submuscular placement is often recognized for yielding a more natural contour and feel, which can be particularly advantageous for patients seeking a subtle enhancement. Your surgeon, equipped with a deep understanding of both techniques, will thoughtfully discuss these options with you, considering your health background, tissue characteristics, and personal aesthetic goals to tailor a surgical plan that best suits your needs and minimizes scarring.

Role of technology in minimizing scars
Technological advancements in the field of plastic surgery can play a pivotal role in reducing scarring. Endoscopic tools enable surgeons to make smaller and more precise incisions, which can lead to less tissue trauma and subsequently, less scarring. New techniques in suturing and the development of innovative materials are also contributing to more aesthetic and less conspicuous scars. Discussing these technological options with your surgeon could result in these advancements being incorporated into your procedure, with the aim of minimizing the appearance of scars.
Immediate post-surgery scarring
Immediately following breast augmentation surgery, you can expect to see inflammation and stitches at the incision sites. The scars at this stage will typically appear as a red or pink color and may be slightly raised. It’s important to remember that this is a normal part of the healing process, and the appearance of your scars will change significantly as they heal over time.
Long-term healing and scar maturation
Over the course of 18 months following your breast augmentation surgery, you will notice a significant improvement in the appearance of your scars. Initially, as mentioned above, they may be red or pink and slightly raised, but as time passes and your body continues to heal, they will gradually become less raised and fade to a color that is closer to your natural skin tone. It’s important to understand that this is a gradual process and that the final appearance of your scars may not be apparent until a year or more after your surgery.
Complications that can affect scarring
While most breast augmentation surgeries are successful and free of complications, there are potential issues that can affect the healing process and result in more noticeable scarring. These include complications like infection, poor wound healing, or the formation of keloid or hypertrophic scars. Proper post-surgery care is crucial for minimizing the risk of these complications. This includes keeping the incision sites clean and dry, following your surgeon’s instructions for wound care, and seeking immediate medical attention if you notice any signs of infection such as increased redness, swelling, or pus.
Importance of post-surgery care
Appropriate post-surgery care plays a critical role in minimizing scarring and ensuring a smooth recovery. This includes keeping the incision sites clean and dry, avoiding strenuous physical activities that could strain the incision sites, and following your surgeon’s instructions for wound care. It’s also important to stay hydrated, maintain a healthy diet, and avoid smoking, as these factors can all influence the healing process and the appearance of your scars. With proper care, you can help ensure that your scars heal as well as possible and become less noticeable over time.
Treating scar tissue

Hands-on techniques
Hands-on approaches to healing scar tissue are recognized as a valuable intervention for those navigating the aftermath of breast augmentation surgery. Routinely integrating scar massage can offer a multifaceted approach to mitigate and enhance the healing of scars. By engaging in the systematic application of pressure and taking a hands-on approach to the scarred tissue, a cascade of benefits may unfold. These include the softening of the fibrous tissue formations, leading to a decrease in the density and rigidity of the scars. This manual manipulation possesses the potential to bolster the pliability of the skin in and around the surgical site, which is an invaluable advancement for a patient’s comfort and range of motion.

Moreover, the visual aesthetics of scars may experience a notable improvement, contributing to a more satisfactory postoperative outcome from a cosmetic perspective. By the virtue of enhanced circulation driven by the hands-on techniques utilized in scar management, there is an acceleration of the regenerative processes, thereby fortifying the area against the advent of oppressive scarring, such as keloid or hypertrophic.

Topical treatments
Topical treatments can also play a role in managing and reducing the appearance of breast augmentation scars. These can include over-the-counter creams and gels that contain ingredients like silicone or vitamin E, which can help to moisturize the skin, promote healing, and minimize the appearance of scars. Prescription creams containing retinoids can also be effective for reducing the appearance of scars. Additionally, new advancements in topical treatments include onion extract gels, which have been shown to reduce redness, itching, and scar formation. Always consult with your surgeon or a dermatologist to determine the best topical treatment for your specific scar type and skin condition.

Surgical scar revision
In some cases, if a scar from breast augmentation surgery is particularly noticeable or causes discomfort, surgical scar revision may be considered. This is a procedure in which a surgeon removes the scar and re-closes the incision, often using advanced techniques to minimize the appearance of the new scar. Surgical scar revision is usually considered only after the scar has fully healed, which can take up to a year or more. It’s important to discuss this option with your surgeon, as it comes with its own risks and potential for additional scarring.

Influence of healthy lifestyle choices
Adopting healthy lifestyle choices can greatly influence the healing process and the appearance of scars following breast augmentation surgery. This includes maintaining a balanced diet rich in vitamins and nutrients that support skin health and healing, staying hydrated, and getting regular exercise once cleared by your surgeon. Avoiding smoking and limiting alcohol consumption is also crucial, as both can slow the healing process and worsen scarring. Protecting your skin from sun exposure is also important, as UV rays can darken scars and make them more noticeable. By taking care of your overall health, you can support your body’s natural healing process and help ensure the best possible aesthetic outcome.

Myofascial release therapy
Myofascial release (MFR) therapy can be highly beneficial for those looking to minimize scarring. MFR focuses on easing tension within the myofascial connective tissue through hands-on techniques. This approach aims to loosen and restore mobility to the fascia, which is an extensive, web-like layer that envelops all structures in the body.

Scar tissue, a common result of injuries or surgery, can disrupt the normal movement of the fascia, leading to pain and restricted motion. By engaging in MFR, individuals may experience an easing of these symptoms. The therapy serves to soften and reorganize scar tissue, which can decrease its visibility while enhancing the elasticity and function of the affected area. To reap these benefits, it is vital to connect with a certified MFR therapist. Finding a certified MFR therapist near you can help you find a treatment plan that will meet your unique needs.

What is myofascial release therapy
As mentioned above, myofascial release (MFR) therapy is a specialized form of therapy that focuses on releasing tension in the fascia. Fascia is the thin layer of connective tissue that covers all of the structures in the body. Unlike traditional physical therapy, which often focuses on strengthening muscles or improving one joint region, MFR specifically targets the fascia, helping to release restrictions and reduce pain. This is achieved through gentle, sustained pressure applied to the myofascial tissue. MFR is a holistic therapy that aims to treat the whole person, not just the symptoms or the part of the body that has pain or restrictions. It’s a valuable tool for anyone seeking to reduce pain, increase mobility, restore tissue health, and improve overall well-being.
How myofascial release can aid scar reduction
MFR therapy can be particularly effective for scar reduction. By applying pressure and stretch to scar tissue, MFR can help to break down the fibrous tissue, reducing the thickness and hardness of the scar and improving the flexibility of the surrounding skin. This not only improves the visual appearance of the scar, but can also increase the range of motion in the affected area, reducing any discomfort or restriction caused by the scar. Additionally, the increased blood flow promoted by MFR can aid in the healing process and reduce the risk of developing problematic scars such as keloids or hypertrophic scars.
What to expect during a myofascial release sessions
During an MFR therapy session, a certified MFR therapist will first assess the body and any areas of concern. They then will use their hands to stretch and manipulate the fascia. Sessions typically last around an hour, and the number of sessions required will depend on your specific needs and the severity of your condition. Most people begin to experience relief after just a few sessions, although more severe conditions may require ongoing therapy. Your therapist will work with you to develop a treatment plan that is tailored to your specific needs and goals.
How to find a certified MFR therapist

When seeking MFR therapy, it’s important to find a therapist who is trained in the John F. Barnes, a leading researcher and practitioner in the field of MFR, methodology of care. This technique is considered the gold standard in MFR therapy, and therapists trained in this method have undergone extensive education and hands-on training to provide the most effective treatment. At MFR Health, you can utilize a search feature to find a therapist suited to your specific needs. Simply visit our website and use our search tool to find a certified MFR therapist in your area.

Balancing expectations with reality
As you embark on your journey towards transformation through breast augmentation, it’s important to balance your expectations with reality. While this procedure can significantly enhance your appearance and boost your self-confidence, it’s important to understand that scarring is a natural part of the process. However, with the right care and management strategies, including MFR therapy, you can significantly minimize the appearance of scars and improve the overall aesthetic result. Always remember that each person’s healing journey is unique, and the final outcome may vary based on various factors such as your skin type, age, lifestyle, and the skill of your surgeon.