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Breast Implant Placement: Over vs. Under the Muscle

Question MarkDuring the breast augmentation consultation process, patients are faced with several decisions about their surgery. From the implant type and size to where it is placed, our plastic surgeons do their best to help patients choose the right breast implants that can ultimately help them reach their ideal outcome. One topic that will be discussed during their consultation is whether the implant should be placed over or under the pectoralis muscle. This decision can have a significant impact on how natural the breast augmentation results look. What works for one patient may not be the preferred option for another person, which is why our plastic surgeons must first examine the individual’s anatomy while considering their goals to determine the best technique to use.

In general, placing the breast implant underneath the chest muscle tends to look more natural. This is typically recommended for those with little to no breast tissue present, since having the extra layer of muscle will help limit implant visibility. Additionally, this technique can provide a more gradual slope in the upper area of the breast, creating a more natural contour.

Placing the implant over the muscle, however, can be a viable option for certain candidates. When there is adequate breast tissue present, and especially when there is extra skin, implants may look more natural using this technique. An added benefit to this is patients typically experience an easier recovery since there is often less pain and a faster healing time. Should a patient be a good candidate for over-the-muscle implant placement, our surgeons may recommend silicone implants, since they do not show rippling like saline can.

The benefits and potential risks of each option are presented in the consultation to help patients make an informed decision about their surgery. To learn more about breast implant placement, and which option can help you reach your aesthetic goals, please contact The Ottawa Clinic to set up your consultation.