Types Of Breast Augmentation Incisions
Breast enlargement typically requires surgical incisions to accommodate implants under the patient’s mammary tissues. By far, there are four types of breast augmentation incisions used in most procedures. The type of incision that will be used on a patient will depend on certain factors, such as skin condition, type of implant, scarring issues, and personal preferences of the patient. Let’s take a look at the different types of breast augmentation incisions available.
Fold or Crease Incision (Inframammary Incision)
The fold incision, as its name implies, is made at the breast fold, under the breast just above the rib cage. The implants are inserted through the incision, then moved upward into the breast area. The scarring is generally discreet since the incision is hidden from view.
The inframammary incision is a good option for small to medium-sized breast implants. However, if breast implants are significantly large, it may be necessary to create a new crease. This is important to ensure that the nipple is centered.
Armpit Incision (Transaxillary Incision)
The armpit incision is a cut made along the natural lines or folds in the armpits. The implant is then inserted through this incision and tunneled down toward the breast area. It may or may not be performed using an endoscope. It is considered a more difficult procedure because of the distance of the incision from the exact spot where the implants will be placed. It is preferred by many patients, however, because the scarring is minimal and there will be no visible signs of surgery in the breast area.
A disadvantage to this type of incision is that in case removal or revision is necessary, another incision will be made in a different area, such as the breast fold or the nipple. When it comes to the transaxillary incision, surgeons will rarely make an incision in the same area because of the difficulty in moving the implants.
Nipple Incision (Periareolar Incision)
This type of incision involves making a surgical cut around the areola – the circular area of skin around the nipple. Since the color of the areola tends to be the same as or similar to the color of the nipple, any scarring that may occur will be nearly invisible. The incision made in this area will create a flap, allowing the surgeon to insert the implant into the breast area.
A key advantage of this type of incision is that the placement of the implant is precise, allowing the surgeon to make the necessary adjustments during the procedure. The incision is also smaller. However, some women who opted for the periareolar incision report having difficulties in breastfeeding. It is possible that this type of procedure may cause damage to the milk ducts. Some women also report loss of sensation in the nipples.
Navel Incision (Transumbilical or TUBA Incision)
The navel incision involves making a cut at the bellybutton rim, then guiding the implant upwards to the breast area using an endoscope. This is not a very common procedure but it is actually considered one of the least invasive incision types due to the elasticity of the skin in the abdominal area. Scarring is minimal and recovery time is shorter with this procedure.
There are limitations that patients should expect, however. The TUBA incision can only be done by a few surgeons. In case removal or revision is required, another incision will have to be performed. In rare cases, the tunneling made underneath the skin could leave V-shaped tracks on the patient’s stomach.