Scars and Breast Augmentation

All women that have breast augmentation will have a scar following surgery. Of course, the location of the scar is not visible in most cases. In fact, the extent of scarring is often minimal. The breast augmentation procedure may be performed through an incision under the breast crease, armpit, around the nipple or belly button. Excessive scarring following breast augmentation is rare because plastic surgeons take precautions to reduce the risk of excessive scarring. Yet, some women are at risk for excessive scarring. Women of ethnic origin are more likely to be at risk for keloid or hypotrophic scars. Keloid and hypotrophic scars may appear thick, raised and reddened. For this reason, scar prevention is a focus in breast augmentation surgery.

Scar Prevention

  • Surgical tape helps to prevent the sides of the incisions from widening. Surgical tape is usually applied immediately after the breast augmentation procedure and remains on until it falls off within six weeks following the procedure. Surgical tape is known to help flatten and fade scars.
  • Silicone sheets or gels are a more recent type of scar enhancing product that may improve the color and size of breast surgery scars. Silicone sheets or gels may be placed over the incisions during the healing process of the scars, as directed by a plastic surgeon.
  • Topical Retin A may help fade scars that are visible following the recovery period. After Retin A is applied, paper tape is used to cover the incision area. The technique is repeated every week or so until the scar fades.
  • Corticosteroid injections such as Kenalog have been known to improve the appearance of scars following the final healing period. The injections are given over a period of time every four to six weeks to achieve the maximum benefit.
  • Laser treatment may also be used to compliment the result of steroid injections.Laser treatment may be used to flatten raised scars. The pulsed dye laser has produced successful outcomes for the improvement of excessive scarring. More than one treatment may be required to produce an optimal result for breast augmentation patients.
  • Surgical scar removal may be performed as a last resort. This treatment may be combined with corticosteroid injections and silicone scar sheets. Surgical removal of a raised scar allows for a new healing process to commence which can result in the enhanced appearance of the scar.

It is important to seek the advice of your plastic surgeon about excessive scarring. Most women do not have excessive scars from breast augmentation, but it’s good to know what your plastic surgeon suggests for enhancing the scar process.

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