What is breast augmentation?
Breast augmentation, also known as mammoplasty, is a surgical procedure that enhances the size and shape of a woman’s breasts. It involves the placement of breast implants under the breast tissue or chest muscles to increase the size of the breasts or restore breast volume that has been lost after weight reduction or pregnancy. There are different types of implants used, each with its unique benefits and considerations. The procedure has evolved over the years, with advancements in surgical techniques and implant technology contributing to its growing popularity and success.
Why people choose breast augmentation
There are several reasons why individuals opt for breast augmentation. For many, it’s a matter of personal preference, desiring larger, fuller breasts to enhance their overall body proportion. Some undergo the procedure to correct asymmetry, where one breast is significantly smaller than the other. Others may seek breast augmentation following life events such as childbirth or significant weight loss, which can alter the size and shape of the breasts. Beyond the physical appearance, breast augmentation can also have profound psychological benefits. It can boost self-esteem and body image, contributing to an overall sense of well-being.
The procedure of breast augmentation
Breast augmentation surgery is a meticulously planned and executed procedure that begins well before the day of surgery. The journey starts with comprehensive pre-operative preparation, which is crucial for ensuring a successful outcome. During this stage, patients receive a thorough medical evaluation to ensure they are healthy candidates for the surgery. This is also an opportunity for the patient to discuss desired outcomes with their surgeon, and together they can make informed decisions about the type and size of the implants.

When the day of surgery arrives, patients are given general anesthesia, which allows them to sleep comfortably through the procedure, which can last anywhere from one to two hours. Surgeons strategically make incisions in discrete areas to limit visible scarring. Following the incisions, breast implants are carefully inserted and accurately positioned within the breast tissues or chest muscles, according to the agreed upon plan. Closing the incisions is done with precision, using layered sutures to optimize healing and diminish scarring. As the skin heals, these incision lines will progressively become less noticeable.

Potential risks and complications
While breast augmentation is a common and generally safe procedure, it carries potential risks and complications that patients need to be aware of. These risks can range from immediate postoperative issues to long-term complications. Immediate risks may include adverse reactions to anesthesia, infection at the surgical site, changes in nipple or breast sensation, and the formation of tight scar tissue around the implant, known as capsular contracture. Regarding the breast implants themselves, there are specific risks such as rupture or leakage, which may require additional surgeries to address.

Long-term risks and complications are also an important consideration. For example, there is the potential requirement for revision surgery in the future, as implants can have a limited lifespan. Additionally, lifestyle factors such as smoking, diet, and physical activity level can significantly impact both the immediate and long-term outcomes of breast augmentation surgery.

Patients considering breast augmentation should have a thorough discussion with their surgeon about these potential risks and complications. This includes understanding how their lifestyle choices might affect the surgery’s outcome and the importance of following pre- and postoperative instructions to minimize complications.

Why scarring occurs
Scarring is a natural part of the body’s healing process after an injury or surgery. When the skin is damaged, the body works to repair the wound by forming new collagen fibers, resulting in a scar. The appearance and extent of scarring can vary greatly among individuals, influenced by factors such as the size and depth of the wound, the person’s age, genetics, skin type, and even their nutritional status. Some people may have a genetic predisposition to develop more noticeable scars, such as keloids or hypertrophic scars.
Different types of scars
Scars are a natural part of the body’s healing process, particularly after surgeries like breast augmentation. They undergo a maturation process that begins with the body’s response to the surgical incision and continues for months or even years afterward. Fresh scars might look red and be somewhat elevated above the skin. Over time, as they mature, scars often become paler, flatter, and less noticeable.

However, there can be variations in the way scars heal. Some individuals may experience abnormal scarring. This includes hypertrophic scars, which are raised and remain confined to the original wound’s perimeters but can be red and rigid. There’s also the more severe form, keloids, which not only are raised but also extend beyond the initial wound boundaries, potentially creating a larger area of scar tissue.

Typical scarring from breast augmentation
Breast augmentation procedures involve detailed surgical techniques that directly impact scarring. The incision’s location is a key factor. For example, a periareolar incision around the nipple may lead to more visible scarring than a transaxillary incision in the armpit, which is naturally concealed. Additionally, the type of implant — saline or silicone — can dictate the size of the incision, with saline implants often requiring smaller incisions since they are filled post-insertion.

Individual healing rates are another crucial aspect influencing scar appearance. Genetics, lifestyle, and post-operative care all play significant roles in how the body heals and how scars mature over time. Post-surgical scars may vary greatly from one person to another, resulting in different textures, colors, and degrees of visibility.

The emotional impact of scarring
Visible scars, especially those stemming from elective procedures like breast augmentation, can have a significant emotional impact. They can lead to feelings of self-consciousness, lowered self-esteem, and even distress or depression in some cases. It’s important to address these psychological effects along with the physical aspects of scar management. Support systems, counseling, and patient education can all play a crucial role in helping individuals cope with the emotional impact of scarring. Moreover, the confidence gained from improved scar appearance can significantly enhance a person’s overall body image and self-esteem.
Professional scar treatment options
Several professional scar treatment options are available to enhance the appearance of scars following surgery, such as breast augmentation. Silicone sheets or gels are often recommended after the wound has completely healed. They promote hydration of the scar tissue, which can soften and flatten the scar, making it less visible. Pressure therapy, achieved by wearing a pressure garment over the scar area, can be effective, particularly in preventing or treating hypertrophic scars and keloids.

For more stubborn scars, professionals may suggest treatments such as laser therapy, which can improve the color and texture of a scar by stimulating collagen production and remodeling the scar tissue. Corticosteroid injections are another option, which can reduce swelling and slow down aggressive scar tissue formation. In some cases, surgical scar revision may be necessary, which involves a procedure to excise the scar and re-close it with improved aesthetic techniques.

At-home remedies for scar reduction
There are also several at-home remedies that can aid in scar reduction. Over-the-counter creams, oils, or gels containing ingredients like vitamin E or onion extract can potentially improve the appearance of scars. Gentle massage of the scar area can also be beneficial, as it can help to break down scar tissue and improve flexibility. However, it’s important to take certain precautions when using at-home remedies. Always test a small amount of any product on your skin before applying it to the scar to check for any allergic reaction. And never apply any product to a wound that hasn’t fully healed.
Importance of sun protection
Protecting your scars from the sun is a key part of scar management. Sun exposure can darken scars and impede the maturation process, making them more noticeable. It’s recommended to keep the scar area covered with clothing or a bandage when in the sun, especially during the first few months after surgery. If covering the scar isn’t practical, applying a strong sunscreen (SPF 30 or higher) can provide protection. Be aware that scars can develop hyperpigmentation (darkening of the skin) if exposed to the sun, which can be permanent in some cases.
Benefits of MFR therapy for scars

Myofascial release (MFR) therapy offers significant benefits for individuals with scars. This therapeutic technique focuses on applying gentle, sustained pressure and stretch to the myofascial connective tissues in the body. By doing so, it assists in breaking down the tough scar tissue, which can become restrictive over time. Other benefits of MFR therapy include:

Improving scar tissue quality: MFR techniques soften and realign the fibrous scar tissue, promoting better integration with the surrounding tissues.

Enhancing scar flexibility: As the scar tissue becomes more pliable, the range of motion in the affected area can be improved, which is crucial for maintaining functional mobility.

Optimizing scar appearance: Through the remodeling of the scar tissue, MFR can help reduce the visibility of scars, contributing to a more natural skin texture and appearance.

Relieving pain and discomfort: Scars can be sources of discomfort and even referred pain. MFR therapy addresses these issues by releasing tension in the scar tissue and adjacent areas.

Supporting overall well-being: By improving the state of the myofascial tissue, MFR therapy contributes to the body’s natural healing processes and overall sense of wellness.

What to expect from MFR therapy sessions
When you choose to include myofascial release (MFR) therapy in your scar management plan, you can expect personalized care tailored to your specific needs. MFR therapy sessions typically last about an hour, and the frequency will depend on your individual condition and goals. The therapy can be integrated into your comprehensive care plan, complementing other treatments such as physical therapy, massage, or specialized scar treatments.

While some benefits can be experienced immediately such as pain relief and increased flexibility, long-term results including improved scar appearance and continued pain reduction can be achieved with regular sessions over time. MFR therapists support your journey towards improved wellness, offering a holistic approach to care that addresses both physical and emotional well-being.

Finding a certified MFR therapist

Finding a certified MFR therapist is crucial for effective scar management. A therapist trained in the John F. Barnes’ methodology of MFR will ensure that you receive the highest standard of care. At MFR Health, we make it easy to find certified therapists through our online platform. Our goal is to connect you with the right therapist to support your journey towards improved scar appearance and overall well-being.

Consistency in scar care
Consistency is key in long-term scar management. This includes maintaining a regular scar care routine, such as applying recommended creams or oils, protecting the scar from sun exposure, and attending regular follow-up appointments with your healthcare provider. Consistency also applies to MFR therapy sessions. Regular MFR therapy can contribute significantly to improving the appearance and flexibility of scars over time.
Finding empowerment through the journey

The journey of undergoing breast augmentation and the subsequent healing process can be transformative. It’s more than just a physical transformation; it’s an opportunity for personal growth and empowerment. MFR therapy can contribute significantly to this journey, promoting self-awareness, resilience, and a deeper connection with your body. Embracing the healing journey, with its challenges and triumphs, can have a positive impact on your overall well-being and self-image. Find a certified MFR therapist today to take the first step toward better scar management.