Are my Breast Implant Scars Abnormal?

I'm two weeks post-op from gel breast implants. Inframammary incision. Also had abdominal, hip and thigh lipo. Breast incisions healing nicely, but have tight, raised ridges running perpendicular to incisions that are very evident when I raise my arms above my head.

Left side has two ridges, right side has one. Is this normal for this stage of healing? Ridges are located in middle of inframammary incisions and extend about two inches inferiorly. (Im a physician)

Doctor Answers 9

Are my Breast Implant Scars Abnormal?

Dear runpamtexas,

It sounds like you have developed Mondor's phlebitis. This may be treated with warm compresses and NSAIDs. The phlebitis should resolve over time. I would watch for signs of infection and see your surgeon on a regular basis.

Warmest wishes,

Larry Fan, MD

San Francisco Plastic Surgeon
4.3 out of 5 stars 14 reviews

Scarring 2 weeks after surgery

I concur with my colleagues.  The scar bands you are feeling will likely get better with time.  Some recommend initiating scar massage therapy 3-4 weeks to "Soften" these bands.   So don't worry, it should get better with time.  Please see your surgeon for a postoperative evaluation.

C. Bob Basu, MD, FACS
Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 211 reviews

Are my Breast Implant Scars Abnormal?

Dr Mondo strikes again! All the previous posters are correct and your surgeon should have been able to diagnose and teat this simply. 

Darryl J. Blinski, MD
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 174 reviews

Phlebitis after breast augmentation

From your description, it seems like you have phlebitis (inflammation of vessels).  Good new is that it is not an infection and that it can happen after breast augmenation.  You can apply warm compress and take NSAIDs for pain relief.  It will resolve on its own. 

Sugene Kim, MD, FACS
Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 76 reviews

Breast Augmentation / Mondor's

Dr. Tholen is absolutely right, the cords you see should resolve on their own after a few weeks. I also advise patients to apply warm compresses to the area, I feel like it does help speed along the process. You shouldn't see any signs of cellulitis or worsening redness though, and like always, if you have more concerns I'm sure your surgeon would be happy to discuss them with you.

Derek Lou, MD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 8 reviews


i have also found that an occasional patient has some tight fascial bands unnoticed until augmentation causing what you described..this usually goes away with time  (months)  .  if it is these vertical bands you are talking about  they almost always resolve on their own..good luck

Michael K. Kim, MD
Fort Myers Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 10 reviews

This is Mondor's phlebitis, and nothing to worry about!

Superficial epigastric vessels are unavoidably divided when your inframammary incision is made. This can be one or two vessels on one or both sides, and these vessels are coagulated at the time of surgery. The vessel(s) form a tender, inflamed clot within the lumen, and the resultant "cord" or tender "tendon-like" band is noted, particularly when your arms are raised. You should actually limit raising your arms above shoulder level for about 2-3 weeks after breast augmentation surgery, to reduce the risk of tearing a small vessel inside your pocket and causing a bleed, or increasing your risk of capsular contracture.

At 3-4 weeks post-op, if your Mondor's cord(s) are still tender, ibuprofen is the treatment of choice.

Cheers to your new look!

Richard H. Tholen, MD, FACS
Minneapolis Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 255 reviews


I agree sounds like mondors disease and it should be nothing to worry about. I like to add an antiinfalmmatory medication like celebrex

Ryan Neinstein, MD, FRCSC
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 76 reviews

Breast Implants - Bands Perpendicular to Incisions at 2 Weeks

Hi runpamtexas in Houston, TX,

This is actually pretty common.  It's called a lot of different things but most likely represents a backup of fluid in lymph and/or veins within the region of the scar.  It goes away on its own over a several week period although massage and warm compresses may make it feel better (you should, of course, check everything with your own PS before you do anything).

I hope that this helps, and good luck,

Dr. E

Alan M. Engler, MD, FACS
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 125 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.