COVID-19 Reopening Updates View Update Virtual Consultation

+1 858-638-9800

9834 Genesee Ave Suite 328, La Jolla, CA 92037

schedule an appoinment

COVID-19 Reopening Updates View Update Virtual Consultation

For women who have chosen to undergo a breast augmentation cosmetic surgical procedure, there may seem to be an endless number of choices to be made, from silicone versus saline implants to implant size and profile to placement in front or behind the pectoral muscle, to the incisional approach. These are all very important decisions that will affect not only the outcome of the procedure but breast appearance and subsequent patient satisfaction. During the consultation, we will carefully go over all the options with patients, including which incision technique will be used to perform the breast implant procedure. The approach that is used for the procedure can affect implant placement, the severity of scarring, and the future ability to breastfeed.

Four Approaches to Breast Augmentation

There are four basic incision approaches to the breast augmentation procedure.

  • Transaxillary: This technique involves a small incision in the armpit. Saline implants may be used with this approach, which is filled after placement in the breast. Smaller silicone implants may also be placed via the transaxillary incision.
  • Periareolar: This approach involves a small incision around the areola (the darkened breast skin around the nipple). While this results in the most minimal scarring, there is a greater risk for loss of nipple sensation.
  • Transumbilical: This approach goes through an incision in the belly button. It can only be used with saline implants, which are filled after they are placed. Like the periareolar approach, the periumbilical approach results in minimal scarring. However, it is more difficult for the surgeon to accurately place the implants.
  • Inframammary: This is the most popular approach, and places the implant through an incision made at the inframammary fold, where the lower breast meets the chest wall. It can be used with either saline or silicone implants. Its advantages and disadvantages are discussed below.

Disadvantages of the Inframammary Approach

The main disadvantage of the inframammary approach is that it does leave a more noticeable scar than the other approaches. The scar is about 1.5 cm to 5 cm in length. The scar is well hidden in the crease of the breast and is not usually seen when patients are wearing a bra or bikini top. However, the scar may be visible when patients raise their arms over their head, or when they are lying down.

Advantages of the Inframammary Approach

The biggest advantage of the inframammary approach over the others is that it provides the most direct and visible route for placement of the implant. This means a considerably shorter operation time than with the other approaches, which may also reduce the chance for subsequent infection or hematoma formation. Furthermore, it provides the best means to achieve placement symmetry and, in the case of saline implants, to match the volume amount between the two implants.

We work with each patient to help them determine which approach best suits their needs and allows for a safe procedure and a quick recovery, with minimal scarring.

*The content in this blog is developed to spread the awareness towards plastic surgery. Our blog is not intended to serve as a replacement for an actual in-office consultation with Dr. Marin. As such, the information within this blog reflects the unique cases of our individual patients.

Comments are closed here.

Related Posts

Nipple Numbness after Breast Augmentation

Around 5 percent of the women who undergo breast augmentation will experience permanent nipple numbness after surgery. It is common for a larger percentage of patients...

Read More

Causes & Treatments of Breast Implant Rupture

Current breast implants from both of the major manufacturers in the United States warranty their breast implants...

Read More

The Louboutin Law: Choosing the Proper Breast Implant

Choosing the proper breast implant is the most difficult decision that women make when undergoing a breast augmentation. However, after a proper, in-person consultation we can...

Read More

The Drop and Fluff: Breast Implants Falling into Place

Breast augmentation is a great plastic surgery procedure to enhance the size and shape of a woman’s breasts. Despite the fact that an implant is placed...

Read More

What clothes do surgeons recommend after breast augmentation?

With over 300,000 breast augmentations performed in the US, women are curious about how to make their surgery smooth and complication-free. In most instances, breast augmentation...

Read More

Schedule an Appointment


In light of the state wide restrictions on non-essential businesses to help reduce the spread of COVID-19, we are rescheduling all of our elective appointments until the global circumstances improve. Our necessary post-operative appointments will be made, as needed, to address immediate surgical concerns such as suture removal and acute postoperative issues. All non-acute follow up appointments, fillers and Botox will need to be postponed until after the quarantine period mid April. Our office will reach out to all patients who need to be rescheduled.

We will be offering new patient virtual consultations online and via Skype that can be scheduled through our website or by emailing Also, we will offer follow-up appointments in the same manner to help manage our patients’ concerns while still respecting the need for social distancing.

We appreciate all of your understanding during these difficult times for all of us.

Stay safe,

Dr. Main and the Marin Aesthetics Team