How soon after surgery can I be in a pool and/or ocean (not swim, just submerged)?

My vacation is scheduled 4.5 weeks after my breast lift/ augmentation surgery. Although I do not want to swim or engage in a rigorous activity, I would like to know if it will be acceptable to submerge my breasts in the water. My surgeon has made it clear that there are no restrictions at 4 weeks post-op, but I have a small separation at the bottom of my areola that seems to be healing well so far (3 weeks post-op).

Doctor Answers 7

4 weeks or so

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Your incisions should be totally closed before you submerge the area in water. Because you have a small separation, it’s best to wait for this to heal before going in the water. If that means waiting beyond the 4 weeks, then unfortunately it would be in your best interest to do so to minimize the risk of infection. You should always ask your surgeon as well.

How soon after surgery can I be in a pool and/or ocean (not swim, just submerged)?

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Hello dear, thanks for your question and provided information as well..
The breasts may lose their elasticity and firmness which can be caused by different factors such as pregnancy, massive weight loss, lactation and aging. To reaffirm the breasts and restore the natural look your surgeon can perform a mastopexy or breast lift. A breast lift restores a firmer, perkier, and more aesthetically pleasing shape to sagging breasts. This not only can improve a patient’s appearance by restoring her youthful, feminine proportions, but also help bras and swimsuits fit more comfortably and attractively. By removing excess, stretched out skin, reshaping the breast tissue, and raising the nipple & areola into a more forward position, a cosmetic surgeon can create a more youthful breast contour. Stretched, large areolae can also be reduced during breast lift surgery, creating an overall better proportioned, natural looking breast…

Tania Medina de Garcia, MD
Dominican Republic Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 441 reviews

How soon after surgery can I be in a pool and/or ocean

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I allow my patients to submerge under sea or pool water only after all the incisions are totally healed. Doing so too early can leave you at risk of infections, and especially with unusual bacteria. If you are healed by that point, I see no problem

Julio Garcia, MD
Las Vegas Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 27 reviews

Open wound post augment/mastopexy

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I don't like my patients to go in chlorinated pools with exposed wounds. You can likely cover this area with a waterproof dressing that will prevent exposure. Salt water/ocean is actually therapeutic and there are no problems there.
You would like to avoid getting an implant infection.
Best of luck!

Michele A. Shermak, MD
Baltimore Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 57 reviews

Open wounds and swimming

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Open wounds probably will prevent you from going swimming.  Best to review with your surgeon.  Good luck.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

How soon after surgery can I be in a pool and/or ocean (not swim, just submerged)?

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Four weeks after breast augmentation is usually fine to be in the water. However since you have an open wound it is bet to check with your surgeon.

Do not submerge a partially open incision in standing water

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I generally let my patients submerge their incision under standing water at 4 weeks.  However, if there is any separation on any of the incision lines you should not submerge the breast. If you are unsure, you should contact your surgeon before going on vacation. 

J. Douglas Robertson, MD, FACS
Montgomery Plastic Surgeon

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.