Any time plastic surgery is performed, some degree of scarring will be left behind. It’s a natural part of the process. This applies to cosmetic procedures like breast augmentation too. After breast augmentation surgery, firm, pink scar tissue may develop along the incision sites. This is extremely common and nothing for patients to lose sleep over. However, since I often hear from patients who are concerned and curious about potential scarring after their procedures, I have decided to answer some of the most common questions I receive during breast augmentation consultations.
What types of scarring occur after breast augmentation procedures?
In most cases, scars are flat and blend into the patient’s natural skin pigment over time. However, in rare instances there are two additional types of scars that can form after breast augmentation. Hypertrophic scars are raised, thick scars that occur at the incision site. In time, they typically recede and soften in appearance. Keloid scars are hard, irregularly shaped scars that develop when the skin is breached and excess scar tissue grows over the site of the incision.
Is there anything patients can do to prevent scarring after breast augmentation?
Unfortunately not, but there are measures you can take to help minimize scarring. Some degree of scarring is unavoidable after receiving breast implants. However, it’s important to remember that in most cases scarring is minimal and will fade in time if the patient follows her board-certified plastic surgeon’s post-procedure instructions closely.
What personal factors may affect a patient’s degree of scarring?
Some patients may be prone to keloid or hypertrophic scarring, however this is rare. Younger patients typically have more minor scarring after their procedures since their bodies produce healing collagen at a faster rate. Scarring also depends on the patient’s skin elasticity, tone, and the length of their incision.
How long will it take for breast augmentation scars to fade?
Every patient heals differently, so there is no definitive timetable. The scar tissue will go through several stages of healing in the months following surgery. They may initially appear red and raised, but eventually become paler and flatter over time. Generally speaking, scars may take up to a year to fully mature.
How can breast augmentation patients help their scars heal faster?
The first step in minimizing scarring and aiding a healthy recovery from your surgery is to adhere to your plastic surgeon’s pre and post-surgery instructions. Do not smoke. Avoid ibuprofen and aspirin, herbal supplements, and other over-the-counter supplements unless you have cleared them with your surgeon first. Protect your incision site from the sun’s UV rays. Applying topical silicone agents can minimize the tension on the incision area and help aid in healing as well.
The best way patients can minimize scarring and achieve the best long-term results from their breast augmentation is to find an experienced, board-certified plastic surgeon to perform their surgery. Speaking with your potential surgeon at length during a consultation and seeing before and after photos from past breast augmentation procedures they have performed is a great way to help ensure that you are in the right hands. For more information or to schedule a complimentary plastic surgery consultation, please contact Dr. David Whiteman at Southern Plastic Surgery today. And follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Google+ for more plastic surgery photos, tips, news, and more.