How Can I Reduce Areola Scars from Breast Augmentation?

Doctor Answers (51)

Scars are Permanent

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There is no way to remove scars (other than replacing them with other scars).

There are several treatments with scientific evidence that make small improvements in normal healing scars.

They include:

1. Scar massage

2. Silicone sheeting

3. Topicals like Mederma

Timing of the use of these treatments is important and using something like Mederma too early can cause wound healing problems.

Remember, it won't remove the scar but it will make them less noticeable.

For atypical scars (keloids and hyertrophic scars there are additional treatments like steroid injections which carry separate risks but may be of some benefit).

I hope this helps.

Steven Williams, MD

Top 4 tips to reduce areolar scars after breast implants

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Scars will always fade with time. There are several steps after surgery to speed up the rate of improvement. Here are a list of 5 top tips for scar improvement:

  • Massage scars until they soften
  • Apply silicone sheets (available in pharmacies)
  • Avoid direct sun exposure and use sunscreen
  • Apply lightening creams

If all else fails, talk to your plastic surgeon about revising the scar. That is a relatively simple and quick procedure.

Raffy Karamanoukian, MD, FACS
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 54 reviews

Improving areola scars

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Surgical scars should heal well with a fine line scar if:

1) there is relatively little tension on the closure,

2) it is performed with good technique, and

3) there is no post op infection or other problems.  

To improve your scars they can be revised if they have matured.  When the revision is performed if there is likely to be tension on the closure a purse-string incision can be made and a permanent suture can be used to keep the tension off of the incision.

All the best,

Dr Repta

Remus Repta, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 101 reviews

Areola Scars from Breast Augmentation

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An areola incision is not my preferred incision for a breast augmentation because they can be more perceptible and they are inconsistent for healing. If you are considering an areola incision, several things should be noted. If you have large , distinct areolas then it may be easy to perform an incision around that area, but remember that the chance of nipple sensory loss is about 15% in this area versus 5-7% from an inframammary fold incision which can be hidden in the fold. Certainly, in patients of color I do not recommend areola incisions as they do not heal, in my experience, as well as other incisions such as inframammary fold incisions.

Rod J. Rohrich, MD
Dallas Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

Fading Scars

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  • Scars will fade with time. Scars require 18 months to mature and get worse (at 6-9 months), before they get better (18 months).
  • Use scar therapy creams as recommended on the label. Scar therapy is most effective in the first 6 months after surgery.
  • Bleaching cream could be helpful if you are developing dark pigmentation
  • Avoid ANY tanning rays/ultra-violet for 6 months, after surgery
  • Laser treatments of scars may be a useful adjunct (ask your surgeon)

Paul C. Zwiebel, MD
Denver Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 14 reviews

Can't be done

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Scars are permanent but do improve with time, massage, and sometimes IPL laser treatments.  Occasionally, a scar revision can be done to make them look less conspicuous but scar revision is not scar removal.

Scar Gels

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There are new scar gels which have growth factors in them which can improve the appearance of the scars.  I typically wait one month before applying anything to the scars.

How can I reduce areola scars from breast augmentation?

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Hello! Thank you for the question!  The typical incision used for breast augmentation are: inframammary (in the fold beneath your breast), periareolar (at the border of the areola), axillary (within the armpit crease), and TUBA (through the umbilicus). Incision placement will do a lot with your preference, surgeon comfort level with that approach, and the type of implant - silicone implants will be difficult to place within certain access incisions. Breast augmentation scars are well concealed and are very discrete. They should not be visible within clothing, and likely hidden without clothing. If your concern is the visibility without garments, you should consider remote access incisions such as in the armpit. However, these other incisions heal very well on the breast and often times inconspicuous. 

It is common for scars to fully mature for up to a year. In the meantime, there are a few things that may help to ameliorate your incision/scar. The most proven (as well as cheapest) modality is simple scar massage. Applying pressure and massaging the well-healed scar has been shown to improve the appearance as it breaks up the scar tissue, hopefully producing the finest scar as possible. Other things that have been shown to add some benefit, albeit controversial, are silicone sheets, hydration, and topical steroids. In addition, avoidance of direct sunlight to the incision will significantly help the appearance as they tend to discolor with UV light during the healing process. 

If unsightly scars are still present after approximately a year's time, other things that your surgeon may consider are intralesional steroid injections, laser, or just surgical revision of the scar itself.

Consult with a plastic surgeon your goals, concerns, and expectations. Certainly incisions should be considered, but should not limit your overall result by hindering visualization and access to your surgeon, and what produces the best results in his/her hands.

Hope that this helps! Best wishes!

Lewis Albert Andres, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

Minimize scars

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Minimize your scars by avoiding exposure to sunlight, massaging scars, and using silicone sheets/stickies/gel. If the scar starts to become raised or thick make an appointment to see your plastic surgeon - you might require a steroid injection. Scars take a year to mature. If you're a year out and still unhappy, consult with your plastic surgeon to discuss a scar revision. Best of luck.

Grant Stevens, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 76 reviews

Select A Surgeon Properly Trained & Experienced in Breast Augmentation

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If you are considering breast augmentation, it is very important to select a plastic surgeon who has extensive training and experience with this procedure.A properly trained and experienced surgeon can help you decide which incision is best for you.

If your procedure is performed through a periareolar incision, then you would likely have a very
fine line scar after surgery.This will be dependent not only on the skill of the surgeon but also on your postoperative recovery.If you develop any type of wound infection in the area or suffer any type of unwanted trauma to the breast the incision may widen.If your postoperative course is unimpeded, you should expect a very fine line scar in this area.

In summary, the best thing you can do is to select the proper surgeon and follow all of the
postoperative instructions.

John J. Edney, MD
Omaha Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 63 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.