What Type of Breast Implants For Tubular Breasts? Costs? (photo)

What breast aug would make them look somewhat normal and what would be a cost estimate?

Doctor Answers 11

Tubular breast deformity options

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Tubular breast deformity is a relatively rare condition where the breast is severely constricted in the base diameter.  This can be anywhere from mild to severe.  A mild form would look very similar to a ptotic breast as pictured here (the nipple is low on the breast mound) while a severe form looks kinda like a tube sock of skin on the chest.  Severe forms of tubular breast deformity have a ring of tough tissue which trapped the breast as it was growing forcing the breast to grow long instead of wide.  The treatment always depends on the severity but in general the fibrous ring of tissue needs to be divided and then the lower half of the breast tissue expanded.  This can sometimes be a multiple stage operation.  In this scenario the breast base is relatively normal and therefore would be more consistent with breast ptosis as is common in women as they age.  

Treatment for breast ptosis involves a lift.  The further the nipple needs to move up the more scars are needed.  In this case the breast needs to be lifted and once all of the volume is high and tight the desire of an augmentation could be considered.  My guess is that there is enough breast tissue in this case that an augmentation would not be needed as the lift would likely result in a good size breast.  Regarding cost it would likely be in the ball park of a mastopexy (breast lift).  Pictures are very helpful but no one can ever accurately recommend a surgery or give a true price quote without seeing you in person.  An individual private consultation from multiple board certified plastic surgeons is always my recommendation before proceeding with any surgical intervention.  

Breast implants for tubular breasts

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Tubular (or tuberous) breast deformity is a specific condition in which the breast bases are elevated and constricted, and the breast tissue pushes out into an abnormally shaped nipple.  Based on your photographs, it does not appear that your breasts can be defined as tubular breasts.  What is visible in your photographs is breast volume asymmetry and significant breast ptosis, or sagginess.  I would expect that you would achieve very nice results from breast lift surgery and limited reduction of the volume of the right breast. Breast implants would only be placed if you desired a significant increase in your breast volume, and would definitely still require simultaneous breast lift to address the breast ptosis. An experienced, board certified Plastic Surgeon would be able to achieve excellent results and good symmetry with careful surgical planning. 

All the best,

Dr. Skourtis


Mia E. Skourtis, MD
Portland Plastic Surgeon

Options for sagging breasts

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Hi there-

I'm not sure where you got the impression that you have a tubular (tuberous) breast shape...

Your breasts do not show this anatomy at all- you simply have ptosis (sagging) of otherwise normally developed breasts, with some minor asymmetry.

You should be able to achieve a very nice improvement with a well-done breast lift, with or without an implant. Be aware the the lift will be required, regardless of whether or not you choose to have an implant- in other words, placing implants alone would not give you a pleasing and symmetric outcome.

Breast implants alone will not correct. A breast lift is needed.

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Thank you for your question and the photos. Before getting breast implant, you may want to consider a breast lift.  That will bring your breast into a more uplifted, youthful appearance. 

If you want to be larger, then consider implants with the lift.

To be sure, see two or more board-certified plastic surgeons in your area for a full and complete evaluation to make sure you are a good candidate and that it is safe for you to have surgery.

You can discuss cost at the time of consultation. I hope this helps.

J. Jason Wendel, MD, FACS
Nashville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 221 reviews

Not tubular breasts

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Your breasts are not tubular from the photos.They are routine ptotic breasts and need full lifts to look great.  Only use implants if you want bigger fuller breasts but understand that implants will not lift you and don't substitute for a surgical lift.

Subglandular silicone gel implants best fix for tubular breasts.

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A tubular or constricted breast is an anatomic variation where the base of the breast is smaller in diameter than normal.  A silicone gel implant is placed above the muscle and under the base of the breast which is surgically release and allowed to drape over the implant.  The breast then assumes the diameter of the implant.

Tuberous Breast Surgery? Saline or Silicone?

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Thank you for the question and picture.

Based on your picture,  It seems that you have significant  asymmetric breast ptosis (sagging) and would  benefit from breast lifting plus or minus breast augmentation surgery. I cannot appreciate tuberous breasts characteristics in your case.

 In regards to the type of breast implants that would best serve your needs,  is likely that you will do well with either saline or silicone breast implants. Generally speaking,  the type of implant used may  determine the final outcome for some patients, especially if the patient does not have significant covering breast or adipose tissue. For example, some surgeons feel that silicone implants have a more natural look and feel than saline implants because silicone gel has a texture that is similar to breast tissue. Each patient differs in the amount of breast tissue that they have.  If a patient has enough breast tissue to cover the implant, the final result will be similar when comparing saline implants versus silicone gel implants.  If a patient has very low body fat and/or very little breast tissue, the silicone gel implants may provide a more "natural" result.

On the other hand, saline implants have some advantages over silicone implants. Silicone implant ruptures are harder to detect. When saline implants rupture, they deflate and the results are seen almost immediately. When silicone implants rupture, the breast often looks and feels the same because the silicone gel may leak into surrounding areas of the breast without a visible difference.  Patients may need an MRI to diagnose a silicone gel rupture.   Saline implants are also less expensive than the silicone gel implants.

Other differences involve how the breast implants are filled. Saline implants are filled after they’re implanted, so saline implants require a smaller incision than prefilled silicone breast implants.

Whether the breast lift and augmentation should be done the same time  is not a question agreed-upon by all plastic surgeons. There are good plastic surgeons who will insist on doing the procedures separately and there are good plastic surgeons who can produce excellent outcomes in a single stage.

The combination breast augmentation / mastopexy surgery differs from breast augmentation surgery alone in that it carries increased risk compared to either breast augmentation or mastopexy surgery performed separately. Furthermore, the potential need for revisionary surgery is increased with breast augmentation / mastopexy surgery done at the same time.

In my opinion, the decision  to do the operation in a single or two  staged fashion becomes a judgment call made by a surgeon after direct examination of the patient.  For me, if I see a patient who needs a great degree of lifting, who has lost a lot of skin elasticity, or  whose goal is a very large augmentation then I think it is best to do the procedures in 2 stages (in order to avoid serious complications). However, doing the procedure in one stage does increase the risks of complications in general and the potential need for further surgery. This increased risk must be weighed against the practical benefits of a single stage procedure (which most patients would prefer).

Conversely, if I see a patient who requires minimal to moderate lifting along with a small to moderate size augmentation (and has good skin quality), then doing the procedure one stage is much safer. Nevertheless, the potential risks  are greater with a 1 stage  procedure and the patient does have a higher  likelihood of needing revisionary surgery.

I hope this helps.

Tuberous breasts and implants

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The features of the tuberous breast deformity are a narrow base and herniation of breast tissue through the areola.  From your photos, your breasts do not appear to have either feature.  Rather, you have significant ptosis (sagging) and moderate asymmetry (right breast bigger and more ptotic than left).  You need bilateral breast lifts with or without breast augmentation.  If you want perfectly symmetrical breasts, you will need to equalize the volume on the two sides.  This can be done by inserting different sized implants on the two sides or by removing some breast tissue from the right side only.  It all depends on what size you want to end up.  Lots of decisions to make.  Think it over.

Implants or lift?

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I would not put any implants in at this time. I recommend getting a good lift to reshape your breasts first and correct the asymmetry. After that has healed and you are happy with the shape you can add implants. I know that's probably not what you want to hear but I think it will give you the best chance of getting a predictable great result. Good luck.

Tuberous breasts ?

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From the photo that you posted, it does not look like you have a tuberous breast defomrity. They breasts look droopy ( ptotic) and need a lift.  There is definite asymmetry.  If you want larger breasts, a lift and an implant may help.

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