Breast Augmentation Options Charlotte

Dr. Bryan Criswell and Dr. Kara Criswell are well known for their expertise in performing natural breast implant surgery in Charlotte and North Carolina. They practice the latest technologies and techniques and will discuss what is safest for you.

As you learn more about breast augmentation surgery and breast implants, you’ll discover there are many different options available to you, some of them involving different surgical techniques. When you talk with our patient coordinator, and when you come in to talk with one of our surgeons, we’ll make sure you understand the full range of choices and help you choose the one best for you.

In order to help start this process for you, we’ve included some of the common techniques and options available in breast augmentation surgery. The choices that most people discuss include the type of implant you want (see our section on breast implants), the incision used to place the implant, and whether the implant is placed under the muscle or on top of the muscle.

The Incision (where will the scar be?)

There are four incisions used to place breast implants: In the fold under the breast, around the lower edge of the areola, through the arm pit, and through the belly button. The most common incision for breast augmentation is in the fold underneath the breast, where your underwire of your bra would be. This incision is usually about one to one and half inches long, depending on the size and type of implant you choose. Generally speaking, a saline implant can be placed through a smaller incision, since it is placed through the incision deflated, and filled once it is inside. A very large gel implant might require a one and half to two inch incision. This incision provides excellent access for the surgeon to place your implant exactly where it belongs, maximizing your cleavage and natural appearance.

An incision around the edge of the lower half of your areola can also be used, depending on the size of your areola. This can leave a nearly imperceptible scar, in the right person. The downside to this incision is that there can be a visible scar on the front of your breast, it can cause a dimpling of your areola, it may have a slightly higher risk of infection, and it may be more difficult to place a larger implant.

The incision in the arm pit (axilla) is less common, and only suited for woman with favorable anatomy. It can be challenging to give adequate cleavage with this incision, and if you happen to make a dark scar, this scar can be seen in everyday sleeveless clothes. Generally, only saline implants or smaller gel implants can be placed through this incision. On the positive side, if you do make a good scar, it can be a great incision to avoid any scar on the breast.

The incision in the belly button (umbilical incision) is called the TUBA procedure: Trans Umbilical Breast Augmentation. This is generally regarded as a procedure with too many risks to make it safe and is rarely performed.

During your consultation, Dr. Criswell will talk with you about your incision option. For the most part, about 90% of our patients proceed with the inframmary fold approach, and about 10% choose the peri-areola or axillary incision.

Placing the Implant Under or On top of the Muscle

Most of our breast augmentation patients tell us they want a natural result. Both of our surgeons are excellent at achieving this result. This result can be strongly influenced by the placement of the implant. After the incision is made, the implant is placed into a pocket that your surgeon creates. This pocket can be either under the pectoralis major muscle, or on top of it. Both Dr. Bryan Criswell and Dr. Kara Criswell usually prefer to place your implant under the muscle. This tends to give you a more natural result, with a more gradual slope at the top of your breast.

Furthermore, placing the implant under the muscle does not interfere with mammograms as much as on top of the muscle, and is safer in terms of preventing some types of complications. Capsular contracture is a known possible complication in breast augmentation surgery, although it happens less often when the implant is placed under the muscle. Please see the section on Potential Risks & Complications for more information.

Some patients desire more the “half of a coconut shell” look, in which case on top of the muscle is a better choice for them. In this case and in certain others, both of our surgeons may recommend placing the implant on top of the muscles, but this is determined on an individual basis.

Our surgeons are experts in giving you a natural look

During your consultation, either Dr. Kara or Dr. Bryan Criswell will discuss with you your best option for achieving your goals. You’ll understand how the technique they plan to use will create natural looking breasts for you regardless of size. Using an areolar incision or a fold incision allows them excellent access to the breast for making a pocket and maneuvering the implant into perfect position. They also favor implanting behind the pectoral muscle, ensuring your larger breast slopes gently and normally on top, avoiding the fake, sharp angled appearance.