Breast Augmentation Recovery


Recovering from Breast Surgery

Pain Level: Above the muscle: Mild to moderate discomfort. Below the muscle: Moderate to severe discomfort following placement under the muscle. 1-2 weeks of pain medication
Swelling: Above the muscle: 4 days-2 weeks. Below the muscle: 2-12 weeks.
Bruising: Up to 2 weeks. Some patients experience no bruising.
Numbness: 1-2 weeks.
Work: Above the muscle: 1 week Below the muscle: 1-2 weeks. If job is strenuous or requires lifting, wait a month.
Exercise: Wait 2-4 weeks
Final result: Above the muscle: 1 month. Below the muscle: 4 months

On the day of surgery you will feel sleepy and may feel pain or be nauseated. Your chest may feel tight and uncomfortable. Your arms and back may also be sore. Pain medication will be prescribed to minimize your discomfort.

After surgery your breasts will be very firm, high, and swollen. After about a month, the swelling will be gone and they will be lower, smaller and softer. It may take up to a year for the implants to settle into a permanent position.

For faster recovery:
  • Keep ice packs applied to your chest on the day of your surgery.
  • Sleep in an upright position. Do not sleep on your stomach for the first two weeks after surgery.
  • To avoid unnecessary swelling or bleeding, do not bend over, strain, exercise or do any other activities that could increase pressure in your chest during the first week.
  • If you have smooth implants, massage them daily to keep them softer, avoid capsular contracture and keep them in proper position. Do not massage in the first 24 hours and do not massage textured implants.
Your doctor knows your particular case best, these are only general guidelines.

Scars after Breast Augmentation

Surgical scars are permanent. However, the incisions are placed so that they are not normally noticeable except on very close observation. Scar location will depend on the incision site (either in crease below breast, armpit, belly button or areola).

Satisfaction Rates for Breast Implants

A recent study conducted at the University of Minnesota in consultation with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) did a 10 year follow-up with 450 women who had undergone breast augmentation. Almost 96% of women with saline-filled breast implants stated they would make the same choice again. 93% were satisfied or very satisfied with their breast implants and 71% rated their breast implants as soft and natural.