Does a Breast Augmentation Hurt?

Does breast augmentation hurt?

This is a question that we hear over and over again by those considering breast implants. The simple answer would be, not necessarily, as it usually depends on the placement of the implant. Some of our patients receive sub-glandular placement (which is over the muscle), while others receive a sub-muscular placement (which is under the muscle). Typically, placing the implant over the muscle (sub-glandular) is not painful and there is much less recovery time involved.

However, those who have sub-muscular placement (under the muscle) do experience some pain, much of which is due to muscle stretching. Many have described it as a cramping type of pain, which can be helped with a muscle relaxant such as Valium.  The actual incisions for the implants (which are usually an inch to inch and a half or so for a saline implant, and 2 – 2 1/2 inches for a silicone implant), have minimal pain. And, if there is pain, it usually subsides within a day or two. Tylenol can help if it continues.

The decision for placing the implant over or under the muscle is best discussed with a board certified plastic surgeon who can examine you in person and determine which would be the best approach for you and your body.

Implant placement depends on many factors including the amount of breast tissue that the patient has and the size of the implant being used. Another very important factor has to do with the patient’s vision and expectations of the end result, as placement of the implant does effect the look, shape and feel of the breasts. In our practice, we spend a lot of time discussing these options to make sure that the patient understands the differences and that we achieve the most optimal result.

Bruising, swelling, tenderness and even a burning sensation are all normal after breast augmentation. It’s very important that patients follow our after-care instructions and that they contact us should they have any questions or concerns.