If you’ve considered undergoing a breast augmentation surgery, then you’ve probably considered if you’ll be able to breastfeed following your procedure. Good news - not being able to breastfeed is typically not an issue that women deal with following a breast augmentation procedure. Plenty of women who have undergone breast augmentation is able to breastfeed without any complication! However, some surgical procedures are more conducive to normal lactation than others, so let’s discuss your options.
What Types of Surgeries Affect Breast-Feeding?
The location/type of incision can affect normal breastfeeding.
Incisions made through the armpit or under the fold of the breast should not cause problems with lactation, but, in some cases, periareolar incisions (incisions made around the perimeter of the areola) have caused decreased nipple sensitivity and therefore decreased milk ejection and production. This is also the case with incisions that cross a section of the areola. As with all breast surgeries, the specific ducts and nerves affected will vary on location and type of incision. If nipple sensitivity is too high or too low, then this should be reported to your doctor.
The placement of the implant can affect the functioning of the breast.
An implant placed underneath the chest muscle is less likely to put pressure on the glandular tissue of the breast, whereas implants above the muscle can sometimes put physical stress on the glands which have a higher chance of affecting lactation. Implants placed behind the muscle are also less likely to damage the milk ducts and nerves involved in normal lactation. Obstructed milk ducts can block the flow of breast milk and cause abnormal swelling in the breasts. In cases of abnormal amounts of swelling during lactation, you should notify your doctor.
It is important to bear these factors in mind if you are planning to undergo breast augmentation surgery and want to breastfeed a child later in life. If this is something important to you, bring this up to your plastic surgeon and ask what type of procedure they recommend.
Will Your Milk Be The Same?
After a breast augmentation surgery using silicone implants, some patients have expressed worry over the possibility of silicone presence in their breast milk. Thankfully, there is no significant increase in silicone levels when comparing the milk of women who have undergone breast augmentation surgery and those who haven’t. In fact, store-bought formula has significantly higher silicone levels than the natural milk of both women who have had breast augmentation and those who haven’t!
How Do You Make Sure Your Baby Is Getting Enough Milk?
A patient won’t know exactly how a previous breast augmentation will impact their ability to lactate until they try to nurse. Many women are able to lactate normally, but in cases where lactation is partially impeded or slowed, formula or donor milk can be used as a replacement.
The most important thing is to notify the baby’s doctor of previous surgeries, so she can check the baby’s weight gain and make sure that he/she is getting the proper amount of food. It is also important to notify the doctor about the nipple sensitivity, as that may vary from patient to patient, and could possibly affect milk production. If the milk supply is impeded, then breast pumps or massages can help stimulate milk production and increase the milk supply.
The good news is that many women who have undergone breast augmentation surgery are able to produce more than enough milk to keep their babies happy, healthy, and growing! To learn more about breast augmentation surgery in Orlando, FL schedule your consultation with our chief plastic surgeon, Dr. Harun Zekirovski!