Many women wonder whether getting breast implants will affect their ability to breastfeed. Unfortunately there is no cookie cutter answer.
It depends on the type of incision you had, the placement of the implant and your general breast anatomy. Incisions in the breast crease (inframammary fold) or in the arm pit (transaxillary) are usually the best choices for women who want to breast feed as they are less likely to cause trauma and damage to the nipple area, glands and breast ducts.
An areola incision (around the perimeter of the nipple) is more likely to result in a loss of sensation to the actual nipple. Reduced nerve responses to the nipple may affect milk ejection and in turn milk production, impairing the mothers ability to breastfeed. Likewise, under the muscle placement is less likely to cause damage to the breast glands and milk ducts compared to over the muscle placement.
First time mother breastfeeding 12 week old baby with breast implants. 330cc, IMF incision with under the muscle placement.
The size of the implant may also have a bearing on the ability for a mother to breastfeed after breast augmentation surgery. Larger implants may be more likely to place pressure on the breast tissue, nerves and milk ducts. The truth is, no one will know whether you can breastfeed with your implants or not until you try. Even then, it is important to remember that many women have difficulty breastfeeding without implants.
If breastfeeding is important to you and you are planning on having children after your breast augmentation surgery, it is best to discuss this with your Plastic Surgeon to minimise the risks of your implants affecting you ability to breastfeed by choosing the best implant incision, size and placement for you.