Is There a "Weight Limit" to Have Breast Augmentation? (photo)

I am 5'5" and approximately 210 lbs. I just had a plastic surgeon tell me that I was "too fat" for breast augementation and he would not do it on me! Are there "weight restrictions" for something like this?

Doctor Answers (20)

Higher Breast Augmentation risks for overweight patients

+4

Hello

We don't have a weight limit on our patients, but we do tell all patients who are overweight that they have higher risks of complications such as infection, loss of implant and anesthetic complications.

Having clearly stated goals, and discussing these with your surgeon is very important. Heavier patients who have droop in their breasts are not going to get the perky breasts that a thin patient with no droop will get. If you are satisfied with a larger version of your own breasts, then that may be worth pursuing.

Then there is the issue of size. You would need a pretty large implant to make a difference. In general, the largest implants are about 800 cc. A number of years ago we had a breast reconstruction patient who had double mastectomies and implant reconstruction. She was overweight. She had an excellent result, but in her eyes we had failed because the 800 cc implants barely showed given her abdominal girth.

An 800 cc implant on a size 34 chest would make a huge change, but on a size 42 chest it may not change the appearance or the cup size that much. You did not mention your age, your chest size, whether you are trying to lose weight, or whether you plan children in the future. Those are other variables to discuss. I would suggest getting one more opinion and bringing your goals written down to duscuss with the surgeon.


Santa Rosa Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

No absolute limit

+4

There is no absolute number or maximum weight, as long as your overall health is ok and you can tolerate the procedure. If you are planning on losing a significant amount of weight, however, I would recommend getting closer to your goal weight prior to surgery, as it will likely give you the best chance at an excellent cosmetic result in balance with the rest of your body.

Shahram Salemy, MD, FACS
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 97 reviews

No weight limit to Breast Augmentation

+3

Absolutely not. Weight is not a factor in the decision to pursue breast augmentation.  However, excessive body fat on the abdomen and lateral chest wall may influence the projection of the breasts after augmentation and make them less noticeable when compared to a more svelte patient.

Raffy Karamanoukian, MD, FACS
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 47 reviews

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Breast implants not just for skinny women

+2

Assuming you are otherwise healthy, there is no reason you couldn't have a breast augmentation, no matter what your weight is right now.  Breast implants make your breasts larger--if that's your goal, then they're probably right for you.  Based on your photo, by the way, I think you'll need a breast lift as well.

Carmen Kavali, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

Breast lift with augmentation for best results

+2

There are no absolute weight restrictions for a breast augmentation, but when considering any body contouring procedure, it is best to be at or nearly at your 'goal' weight prior to the procedure.

From your photos you would be a better candidate for a breast lift and a breast augmentation. A breast lift by itself will not give you a satisfactory result. Your nipples are in a low position. It is important, to make the result look correct to have the implant directly behind the center of the breast. When observed from the front, you must be able to see the bottom of the areolar and a bit of the non-pigmented skin of the breast below the areola. Otherwise, you will need a lift, as in your particular situation.

An augmentation by itself will not look very good. An augmentation with a breast lift will give you upper pole fullness and will lift the nipple to a higher and more youthful position.

Jeffrey Zwiren, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

No

+2

If you mean:  Can you have a breast augmentation if you are overweight? the answer is yes you can.  If you are so overweight that you are not a good anesthesia risk, then you should not have any unnecesary surgery.

George J. Beraka, MD (retired)
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Safer To Be Ideal Stable Weight

+1
Scientific research has confirmed an increase in the occurrence of complications related to body contouring surgery in patients with a high Body Mass Index (BMI). It is highly recommended that you reach a normal and stable weight for your safety. Doing so will also improve your results.

Jerome Edelstein, MD
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 59 reviews

Weight limit

+1
Although there is no "weight cut off" many surgeons will not perform cosmetic surgery on anyone with a BMI of over 30 (given your height and weight your BMI is 34.9) to avoid risk of serious complications such as blood clots, wound healing difficulty, and infection. Although it may seem unfair, we have to consider your health and safety first. 

Grant Stevens, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 67 reviews

Weight and Breast Augmentation

+1

            There’s no absolute weight limit for patients contemplating breast augmentation surgery. Although patients who are over weight have high satisfaction rates with this procedure, they also have higher complication rates. Patients who are over weight have a higher incidence of infection, wound breakdown, cardiac problems, anesthesia issues and pulmonary problems. For these reasons, patients with high BMI’s should have careful pre-operative screening. In some cases, where sleep apnea may be an issue, inpatient surgery should be considered.

            Patients who are over weight who have breast hypoplasia often have associated breast sag. Correction of this problem may include breast augmentation in combination with breast lift surgery.

            No two patients are exactly alike, and the treatment plan should be individualized for each patient. Consultation with a board certified plastic surgeon would be appropriate to determine the best surgical option for you.

Richard J. Bruneteau, MD
Omaha Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 77 reviews

Breast Augmentation

+1

Surgical risks and complications increase significantly with increased BMI.  I do not offer elective cosmetic procedures to people with a BMI over 30 in most cases.  I will sometimes allow up to 35, depending on the specific case.

Best,

Asif Pirani, MD, FRCS(C)
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 28 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.