This is probably the most common question I hear from women considering breast augmentation. Of course the answer will be different for each individual and it is not my place to push you in one direction or another but my hope is to inform you on what plastic surgeons know from previous studies and my own experience. In Scottsdale and the East Valley there are families with many children and often I see mothers who don’t want to wait until their 4th, 5th or even 6th child is born. We all know that pregnancy and breast feeding can have variable effects on breast tissue whether leading to flattening of the breast or breast ptosis (sagging). Because of this variability, even for the same individual pregnancy, there is no absolute way to predict what changes will occur with another pregnancy following breast augmentation. The most common worries I see when considering another child are: will I be able to breast feed and how will my breasts change after pregnancy or breast feeding?
Q. Will I be able to breast feed with a breast augmentation?
A. Many women in my own practice and in published literature are able to breast feed successfully following breast augmentation. Any operation on the breast does come with the possibility of affecting lactation especially when incisions are made around the nipple areolar complex (NAC). Peri-areolar incisions will disrupt some of the lactating glands so I typically recommend an infra-mammary or trans-axillary approach if my patient is very concerned about breast feeding. Some patients may find they need to supplement with formula although this is not uncommon with women who have not had any breast surgery as well. Theoretically an incision made below the breast or in the armpit does not disrupt any breast tissue as the implants are placed directly under the breast gland and usually under the pectoralis muscle.
Q. How will my breasts change with pregnancy? Will I need another surgery after breast feeding?
A. As I stated above, every woman’s breast changes differently with pregnancy and breast feeding. One patient’s skin may tighten up significantly following lactation to where there is minimal change while others may lose volume and develop breast sagging as well. More commonly I see smaller changes with smaller breasts but this isn’t always the case. Another factor to consider is weight gain with pregnancy or lactation. If a patient gains weight with or without pregnancy then loses the weight, breast sagging can be the result and a breast lift is an option for correction.
Most importantly, breast implants do not increase risk or pose any danger to infants breast feeding or pregnant mothers whether silicone or saline. Ultimately only you know when you are ready and you should not be pushed otherwise. I have many patients who decided they want their youthful body back now and are happy they did not wait while other patients who decided to wait until they are finished with children also are satisfied. Feel free to email or come for a consultation if you have any other concerns you would like to discuss. Below is a summary of reasons patients decide to proceed with breast augmentation and reasons to wait.
3 Reasons to proceed with breast augmentation
- Better sex life according to a recent study from Brazil, specifically better arousal and satisfaction
- Regain your youthful breast shape and better self image. Many woman get fit and feel great after pregnancy but unfortunately breast augmentation is the only way to restore breast size
- Another pregnancy may not alter breast shape and many patients are still happy with the changes following birth. Breast implants have little if any affect on breast feeding.
3 Reasons to wait until after children:
- Possibly lower chances of needing corrective breast lift or implant exchange
- May require formula supplementation, not sufficient evidence to say for sure
- Breast feeding may be uncomfortable for some
Call for a consultation if you have further questions or post any comments below. 480.466.7355