In order to place the implant into your breast tissue, a small incision is made in your skin. It's very short - about 3 to 4 cm in length and can be placed in one of three areas.
This is by far the most common location. This incision is placed low on your breast and a little to the side. It is very well hidden and usually heals with a barely noticeable line. You really only see this incision when you lift your breast up to look and they are usually not visible when you look at yourself in the mirror after a shower.
This incision is made around the edge of the areola, usually in the lower or outer part at the junction of the darker areola skin and the adjacent normal skin. The incision usually heals as a fine line but is more visible when looking in the mirror than the intra-mammary incision. This technique requires slightly more dissection to access the tissue plane where the implant is placed and has a slightly higher risk of losing some sensation or feeling in the nipple area.
This incision is placed in the armpit area and allows breast augmentation without scars on the breast at all. This technique requires more dissection to place the implant and getting the implant in just the right spot is sometimes more difficult. If a second procedure is required to help correct excessive tightness (more about this later), this surgery cannot be done through this incision and an inframammary incision would have to be made.
Most women want the inframammary incision because it involves less dissection, has a very low incidence of affecting nipple-areola sensation and, oddly, may truly be the least visible. When you look in the mirror or if your partner is looking at your breasts, the incisions are usually hidden from view. From the same viewpoint however, you may notice the fine line of the periareolar incision. The problem many women have with the transaxillary (armpit) incision is that in your bathing suit or sleeveless shirt or top, when you raise your arms anyone can see your incisions. If both arms are raised, having two armpit incisions is a tell-tale sign that you probably had a breast augmentation. Is this important? Only you can answer this question. With the popularity of breast augmentation, "knowing" you or someone has had their breasts augmented does not faze people that much anymore.
Like many other choices you will have to make, I will discuss the incisions above with you during your consultation to make sure you understand them all before making your decision.
If you would like to learn more about which incision is right for you, please contact our office to set up a consultation with Dr. Zelt.