What Are My Incision Options for Breast Augmentation?

Young Woman

Women considering breast augmentation have three acceptable incision options, each of which has its advantages and disadvantages based on the individual’s needs and desires. These incisions include:

  • Inframammary – Considered the most common approach for breast augmentation surgery, this incision is made in or near the inframammary fold where the breast and chest meet. In general, this incision often provides the most short and long term flexibility, better exposure during surgery, more predictable outcomes and a variety of other benefits that can be discussed at the time of your consultation.
  • Periareolar – This incision is made along the margin of the lower half of the nipple-areola complex where the nipple adjoins normally colored breast skin. While this incision placement is requested by some patients due to its relatively inconspicuous location, potential issues such as an elevated risk for the loss of nipple sensation, a greater likelihood of capsular contracture and a propensity for breast contour irregularities caused by scarring should be taken into consideration.
  • Transaxillary – Located in the armpit, this incision option has the major benefit of producing no postoperative scarring on the breasts themselves. This is the second most popular incision placement, and the results can be excellent for the appropriate patients, particularly when performed endoscopically. However, like the periareolar incision, there are several potential issues associated with this approach that should be considered before selecting it.
  • There is another incision location used by a small minority of physicians, the transumbilical one, located in the belly button. In my opinion, this is a “gimmicky” approach fraught with multiple and significant problems and no rational advantages that I would never consider using for my patients.

    Ultimately, the particular incision utilized will be determined based on your specific breast augmentation goals and surgeon preference and recommendations. For my patients, the inframammary incision is recommended and employed a vast majority of the time due to its considerable and multiple advantages over the other approaches.

    Steven H. Turkeltaub, MD, PC

    Contact Arizona Center for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery
    If you have any more questions about breast augmentation incision options, or if you would like to schedule a consultation at our office, please contact us today.