If you were to ask someone who knew nothing about plastic surgery about breast implant placement, you’d probably get nothing more than a confused look and possibly the question, “Aren’t breast implants placed in the breast?” Ask that same question to a plastic surgeon and you’ll quickly learn that breast implant placement is a lot more complex. If you’re considering breast augmentation, let’s take a quick look at your placement options.
Over the Muscle or Under?
When it comes to breast implant placement there are two primary options: subglandular (over the pectoral muscle) or subpectoral (under the pectoral muscle). Both have their benefits. This is a decision you’ll want to make in close consultation with your surgeon since many factors play into the placement that is best for you. Some of these factors include:
- Body Type – The amount of existing breast tissue you have can be a factor in determining breast implant placement. Dr. Sato considers your body type, the amount of breast you have, and the amount of sagging present in your breasts when offering a recommendation about implant placement.
- Size of Implant – Large implants sometimes cannot be placed behind the pectoral muscle as there are limitations to the amount of space available. Subglandular placement usually leads to more dramatic results and more defined cleavage.
- Risk of Capsular Contracture – Capsular contracture is a condition that occurs when the thin capsule (or pocket) surrounding the breast implant tightens making the breast feel hard and in extreme cases distorting the shape of the implant requiring breast implant replacement. Implants placed behind the muscle tend to have a lower risk of this condition.
- Textured or Smooth Implants – Textured breast implants can greatly reduce the risk of capsular contracture (one of the biggest complications from breast augmentation surgery). These implants have a somewhat thicker shell and may be more noticeable with subglandular placement.
- Risk of Breast Cancer – Subpectoral implant placement tends to lead to better mammogram images, an especially important factor for women with a heightened risk of breast cancer.
- Post-Surgical Recovery – Recovery from subglandular implants tends to be quicker than recovery after subpectoral implants.
- Future Sagging – Placing an implant behind the pectoral muscle provides better support to the implant and can reduce the amount of future breast sagging a woman might experience.
Which Implant Placement is Right for Me?
Both implant placement options have their advantages. During your consultation with Dr. Sato ask questions about this important decision. She will likely have a recommendation about which placement option may work best in your situation. Be prepared to ask questions if you have any. Our goal is always to help you make the choice that is right for you so you can love your new breasts. When it comes to implant placement there is no one superior option that works for all women. Your unique situation must be carefully considered.
If you’re ready to take the next step toward fuller, more shapely breasts, contact us today and schedule your breast augmentation consultation with Dr. Sato.