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Breast Implant “Settling”: What to Expect When the Bandages Come Off

Immediately after surgery, patients are instructed to wear a bandage until their post-operative appointment the next day. It is important to note that for some, the first glimpse that patients get of their new breasts may come as a bit of a surprise.  

When breast implants are situated beneath the pectoral muscles, breasts often also appear higher and fuller than expected. Fullness in the upper pole of the breasts may seem somewhat out of proportion. This is normal because the breast implants are being pushed upward by tight muscles. The pectoral muscles are typically not relaxed before surgery. Therefore, when implants are placed beneath them, they must stretch to conform to the new shape. This is also the main reason for the soreness patients feel after submuscular placement.

The initial recovery after breast augmentation surgery is all about healing incisions and allowing the muscle to start relaxing over the breast implants. This process involves the muscles and can take some time. As the muscles loosen around the shape of the breast implants, the shape and projection of the breasts may change slightly.

Breast implant settling occurs as the breast implants drop into their pockets and shift into their intended form! This is also referred to as “dropping”. The dropping aspect of this process refers to the way that volume settles at the lower pole of the breast, as would appear with natural breast tissue.

How And When Does Settling Occur?

Breast implants settle in their own time, and there are many factors that affect this timeline such as implant size, shape, placement, and post-surgical care.

While most patient notice a change within a few days to weeks after surgery, the process can normally take about 3 months. this timeline is something that varies from one person to another. Note that the breasts do not look unnatural while the muscle is forming around them, just a bit fuller than they will once the muscle begins to relax!

Another thing that patients should note about breast implant is that one breast may drop sooner than the other. Because this is a subtle process, asymmetry should be minor the other breast will follow suit soon after.

What can I do to ensure the best outcome?

While breast implants settling is a process that cannot be expedited, there are steps you can take to ensure the best outcome after surgery.

Our board-certified plastic surgeons ensure that patients are fully knowledgeable and prepared before breast augmentation surgery. Our state-of-the-art surgical centers provide post-operative care and are equipped with experienced, highly trained, and fully certified medical staff to ensure the safety of your treatment. It is of upmost importance that patients attend all required post operative appointments after surgery, as well as follow doctor’s orders.

Learn more about what to expect after breast augmentation surgery along with some healing tips here!

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