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Understanding Breast Augmentation Scars: Location, Size, Permanence, and Management

Breast augmentation is a popular cosmetic procedure that enhances the size and shape of the breasts. While it can significantly improve self-esteem and body image, it's important to understand that like any surgical procedure, it comes with the possibility of scarring. This guide aims to provide comprehensive information about the scars associated with breast augmentation, including their location, size, permanence, settling time, and available treatments for improvement.

Where Are the Scars Located?

The location of breast augmentation scars largely depends on the surgical technique used by the surgeon. Common incision sites include:

  1. Inframammary Fold (IMF) Incision: This is the most common technique, where the incision is made in the crease under the breast. The scar is typically 3-5 cm long and is hidden in the natural fold of the breast. Almost all patients in the UK will have an inframammary incision.
  2. Periareolar Incision: This involves an incision around the lower half of the areola. The scar blends into the border of the areola and the normal skin, making it less noticeable. This is sometimes used if any areolar surgery is to be performed at the same time.
  3. Transaxillary Incision: Made in the armpit, the scar from this approach is completely away from the breast, but it can be visible when wearing sleeveless clothing. This approach is not commonly used in the UK.
  4. Transumbilical Breast Augmentation (TUBA): This less common method involves an incision around the belly button. The scars are hidden within the belly button, but this technique is limited and not widely used for silicone implants. This technique is limited and rarely used in the UK.

How Big Are the Scars?

The size of the scars depends on the incision type, size of implant and the patient's healing process. Generally, scars from breast augmentation are between 3 to 5 cm long. The skill of the surgeon in making precise incisions and suturing them neatly plays a critical role in minimizing scar size. The majority of the scars are in the breast fold and tend to heal well.

Are the Scars Permanent?

Yes, scars from breast augmentation are permanent, as is the case with any surgery. However, their appearance can significantly improve over time. Initially, scars may appear red and raised, but they typically fade and flatten within one to two years after surgery. The full maturation of scars can take 24 months.

When Do Scars Settle?

Scars generally start to settle and fade within a few months after surgery. Most of the improvement occurs in the first year, with the majority of scars becoming softer and less noticeable. Factors such as genetics, skin color, and post-operative care can influence the healing process and the final appearance of the scars.

What Can I Do to Improve Breast Augmentation Scars?

Optimal scar management is crucial for minimizing the appearance of scars. Here are some effective strategies:

  • Silicone Gel Sheets and Scar Creams: Silicone-based products are the gold standard for scar treatment. They help hydrate the scar and reduce its thickness and coloration. These should be applied sooner after the dressings are removed.
  • Sun Protection: UV exposure can darken scars, making them more noticeable. Protecting scars from the sun by using a high-SPF sunscreen or covering them with clothing is essential.
  • Proper Wound Care: Following your postop instructions for wound care is crucial. Keeping the area clean and avoiding stress on the incisions can promote better healing.
  • Healthy Lifestyle: Maintaining a healthy diet, avoiding smoking, and staying hydrated can enhance your body's natural healing processes. Smoking can severely impair wound healing.

Treatments for Scars

If scars from breast augmentation are bothersome, several professional treatments can help improve their appearance:

  • Steroid Injections: For raised or hypertrophic scars, steroid injections can be effective in flattening them. This is usually the next line of treatment if the silicone tapes have not been as effective.
  • Laser Therapy: Laser treatments can reduce the redness and texture of scars by stimulating collagen production.
  • Microneedling: This technique involves using fine needles to puncture the skin gently, which can help in softening and flattening scars. Morpheus8 has been used for improve scars.
  • Surgical Revision: In some cases, surgical revision of the scar might be considered to improve its appearance. This should be a last resort as sometimes the scar may become hypertrophic and possibly worse than before.


While scars are an inevitable part of breast augmentation, understanding their nature and knowing how to care for them can significantly enhance their appearance over time. Always discuss your concerns and expectations regarding scarring with Mr. Nassab before undergoing surgery. He can provide you with tailored advice and treatment options based on your individual healing profile and the specifics of your surgery. Remember, a well-managed scar is often a small price to pay for the confidence and satisfaction that breast augmentation can bring.

Ask the Expert

Mr. Reza Nassab

Mr. Reza Nassab MBChB, MSc, MBA, FRCS (Plast) is well established consultant plastic surgeon with a specialist interest in the field of cosmetic surgery. Mr. Nassab performs a wide range of procedures for the face, breast, body and skin. He is one of the most sought after cosmetic surgeons in the North West, Cheshire and UK. He has numerous patients from around the world from countries such as Dubai, Ireland, Finland, France and Spain.

Mr. Nassab offers patients a bespoke holistic approach. His consultation identifies your expectations and desires. He will discuss options specific to your needs to help achieve realistic goals. His philosophy is that individual patient is unique in their goals and anatomy therefore each treatment plan has to be tailored to that individual.

Mr. Nassab has become the one of the go to plastic surgeons by celebrities and influencers. He has been featured on the TV show The Real Housewives of Cheshire performing procedures such as the Mummy Makeover and Eyelid Lift. He has also featured on the ITV show Olivia Attwood’s Price of Perfection. He is well known for his breast augmentation surgery and a number of his celebrity patients have shared their stories in the press and media.

Your Consultation

Consultations involve an in-depth discussion about your desired outcomes and planning bespoke solutions to address your concerns. Mr. Reza Nassab provides consultations in Cheshire and Manchester. We are committed to delivering the highest quality of care for our patients. Mr. Reza Nassab performs consultations and procedures in Knutsford, Cheshire, and Deansgate Square, Manchester. He operates in the exclusive boutique hospital in Wilmslow, Cheshire. This is a state-of-the-art facility providing the best in patient care. Mr. Reza Nassab provides consultations and minor procedures at CLNQ in Deansgate Square Manchester and Knutsford Cheshire.

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