When contemplating the possibility of undergoing cosmetic breast surgery, there are many factors that a woman must consider. There are obviously aesthetic factors depending on the type of breast surgery you undergo. For example, with breast augmentation patients, patients must choose between different types of implants and how much of an increase in breast volume will be needed to provide the results they desire. But there is more a patient must reflect on before choosing to undergo a breast procedure. One question I consistently receive from patients is how will surgery to the breasts affect my ability to breastfeed in the future?

Will I Be Able to Breastfeed After Breast Surgery

Let me begin by saying that for most patients who undergo cosmetic breast surgery, breastfeeding will still be possible. New mothers who have previously had a cosmetic breast procedure are encouraged to breastfeed if that is their preference. Every woman’s body is different. In some cases, a woman’s milk supply will not be affected at all. For other women, the amount of breast milk they are able to produce may be decreased after surgery.

It’s important to remember that breastfeeding is not an all or nothing proposition. While it’s possible that a breast surgery can affect the amount of milk that a woman’s breast is able to produce, that does not mean that she will not be able to breastfeed. There are things women can do to help increase their supply of breast milk. The first two weeks can be a crucial time for increasing breast milk production. The breasts will have more milk production if more milk is removed during those first few weeks. Additionally, using a hospital-grade breast pump can help stimulate the production of breast milk by completely emptying the breast.

I’ve heard from many breast augmentation patients who are concerned about the potential implant rupture and leak that can be harmful to a breastfeeding newborn. However, breastfeeding with implants proposes no known dangers to either the mother or baby that I am aware of. Implant ruptures are very uncommon, but even in the rare case that one does occur, it is extremely unlikely to cause any harm to the mother or baby in terms of toxicity. I highly recommend bringing up this concern with your board-certified plastic surgeon during the pre-surgery consultation phase so you can make an informed decision that you are comfortable with.

Although cosmetic breast surgery may not be a barrier to breastfeeding, I do typically recommend that my patients wait until they are finished having children before undergoing their procedure. Although every woman’s body may respond differently to pregnancy, the changes your breasts experience during pregnancy can affect the results of your procedure and may cause a need for additional procedures like a breast lift down the road. If you would like to discuss this in a more personal setting, please contact me, Dr. David Whiteman, at Southern Plastic Surgery today to schedule a plastic surgery consultation. You can also follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ for more tips, news, and updates.