I Am a MtF Transgender Wanting Breast Implants - Options?

I would like to go as big as possible however I do not have a large amount of breast tissue and would preferably go over the muscle because of recovery and I do like to work out I am quite leand and 6ft 2 tall - however if I went under the muscle i would have more tissue to cover the implant I am definitely thinking silicone not saline. Any help would be appreciated xxx

Doctor Answers 7

Breast augmentation for SRS

I have been caring for patients with with GID for over twenty years and also have a busy breast augmentation practice.  It is rare that I recommend an under the muscle approach for the following reasons:

1) under the muscle is more painful;

2) under the muscle bleeds more and has a higher risk of post-op bleeding;

3) there is a potential space behind the muscle that extends into the neck, making implant migration more likely;

4) muscle activity can move the implant;

5) muscle activity during exercise distorts breast contours even in the best outcomes (and forever);

6) the breast is a modified skin organ and is naturally located on top of the muscle;

7) (IMPORTANT POINT) the pectoralis muscle in genetic males is very much more developed than in the genetic female, so going under the muscle in a patient transitioning MtF means working through a much more robust (read: strong; bloody) muscle.

New generation cohesive gel implants are so soft and have so few problems with wrinkling and rippling that they are very  well tolerated on top of the muscle, even in very slender patients. 

For the MtF patient implant size can be limited by the amound of available skin: overwhelming the skin envelope leads to an unnatural result.  Of course implant base diameter has to be sized to the patient's chest, but the volume that can be accomodated will depend on the overlying soft tissues.

Bottom line: for patients in MtF transition I never go under the muscle.


Feel free to contact me for additional information.


Dan Greenwald, MD FACS

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Sizers are an important part of the process

Generally speaking the advantages of going over the muscle are very few.  The recovery from sub muscular breast implants is not significantly different, but the longterm advantages are many.  I would suggest a sub muscular implant, even in patients that work out.  You need to try sizers on to determine which would be best for you.

I Am a MtF Transgender Wanting Breast Implants - Options? #transgender# breast augmentation

At this current time, there are more options than ever before for breast augmentation.  There are saline (salt water) filled implants and silicone gel filled implants.  There are textured and smooth implants as well as round and, now, shaped implants.  So many options to choose from regarding implant types.  There are different options regarding technique as well.  For example, the incision to place the implants can be in the under-arm, around the areola, through the belly button, and in the breast crease.  The size of the implant depends on the broadness of your shoulders and the width of your breast.  Matching this to the shape of your body is another issue. Much will depend on the size you are requesting as far as the cup size.  Your surgeon should be able to help decide, with your input, the actual size of your implant.

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Breast Augmentation for transgender

I have had the privilege of taking care of transgender patients in all different stages. I have used both saline and silicone implants in the submuscular position with nice results.. it depends on what the patient is looking for. Sometimes a staged procedure is necessary to achieve the final goal - for example, if a patient wants a larger look than we can achieve on the first surgery, we can re-assess the situation after 6-8 months to see if the body will allow for a larger implant.

"I want to be as big as possible"

I have zero experience with GID but it seems to me if your skin envelope is tight and you want to be as big as possible, would you consider wearing  a BRAVA to expand the envelope prior to augmentation and possibly to add fat to subcu space for better coverage?

Rafael C. Cabrera, MD
Boca Raton Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1 review

Breast implants

It is hard to tell without looking at photographs. But from my experience with M to F going under the muscle is preferable for adequate coverage of the implant. I also agree that a silicone contour profile implant will give the most natural appearance.

Of course taking your chest measurements will help determine the size appropriate for you.

Good luck! 

Dana Khuthaila, MD, FACS
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 38 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.