When Will I Have Full Range of Motion Back After Breast Augmentation?

I had a breast augmentation 10 days ago and still cannot raise my right arm straight over my head. Is this normal? My left has had full range of movement for a couple days. If it's helpful I was a A cup to a D and the right breast had some asymetry. Also is it normal for one to drop faster than the other?

Doctor Answers 13

Arm range of motion after breast augmentation

Thank you for your question. You definitely want to follow your own surgeon's post-op activity instructions.  It is also very normal for one side to progress at a different rate than the other, whether it is range of motion or settling of the implant.

This is a general guide I give to my patients as to the recovery
Week 1) Discomfort level progressively decreases with each day. Swelling decreases a great deal after one week. Most people return to work in some capacity. Driving is feasible if you are not on narcotics.
Week 2) Unlikely to need any narcotic support except maybe at night. Swelling continues to improve compared to week 1. You can start breast massage and slowly increasing your range of motion.
Weeks 3-6) May need tylenol or ibuprofen for intermittent discomfort. Swelling completely resolved. You should steadily regain your range of motion. May need additional few months for implants to settle into their final position.

As far as activity, here is a safe guide:
1) No heavy lifting or strenuous activity for 6 weeks.
2) Resume walking at a leiusurely pace right after surgery (e.g. 2 mph)
3) At 2 weeks, you can walk 2 miles at 2mph
4) At 3 weeks, you can walk 3 miles at 3mph
5) At 4 weeks, you can walk 4 miles at 4mph
6) At 5 weeks, you can jog 5 miles at 5mph
7) At 6 weeks, you can resume all activities, but listen to your body and use discomfort or tightness as a guide so you don't over do it.

So in summary, I would continue to increase your range of motion as you are in your second week. I would also avoid the heavy lifting until you are in your 6th week.

Range of motion exercises after breast implant augmentation surgery

Full range of motion is advised by some surgeons immediately after surgery while others are concerned and advise against lifting your arms over your head. I believe in instituting immediate full range of motion with no resistance as soon as possible after surgery. I am attaching the video illustrating the exercises we recommend.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 69 reviews

Range of Motion after Breast Augmentation Surgery

Your range of motion should return soon after having the breast implants placed. Usually after breast augmentation surgery you should have full range of motion evn before you leave the surgery center, though after getting through the first couple of days of mild soreness you should be back to normal. I would see your plastic surgeon to discuss your problems as this may be an indication of some increased inflamation, swelling, traction or even hematoma.

I hope this helps

Dr. Trussler

Andrew P. Trussler, MD
Austin Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

Arm range of motion after breast augmentation

Although it is best to discuss this with your surgeon, in general, it may take several weeks before you are able to have full range of motion of your arms.

Michael A. Jazayeri, MD
Santa Ana Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

Range of motion after breast augmentation

You should note a return of range of motion within 2 weeks after surgery.  It's not unusual for one breast to recover faster than the other, especially if you had more done to one versus the other.  However, if you are having pain are swelling which is limiting your motion, and which is not improving, you should speak with your surgeon.  Good luck, /nsn.

Nina S. Naidu, MD, FACS
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 6 reviews

Implants can settle at different rates

This will depend on the technique used by Your Surgeon. You should follow his recommendations as far as range of motion. But you will eventually regain your full range and strength. As far as settling of your implants, they can settle at different rates due to the normal asymmetries of your muscles

Range of motion after augmentation

I am assuming that your inability to raise your arm over your head is due to pain. If so, it is not at all unusual and may require several more days to resolve. In addition, it is not unusual at all for to demonstrate some asymmetry in the rate at which your implants drop if they were placed under the muscle.

John Whitt, MD (retired)
Louisville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 2 reviews

Full range of motion back after breast augmentation

First, you really should contact your operative surgeon with this concern. But in the mean time this is quite normal and will improve over the next 2 weeks.

Good luck from MIAMI Dr. B

Asymmetric Range of Motion after Breast Augmentation

By 10 days after Breast Augmentation you should have largely normal range of motion of the arms. While some breast asymmetry is inevitable when staring with breast asymmetry, such significant limitation of arm range of motion are not common. You should see your surgeon to make sure all is well.

Peter A. Aldea, MD
Memphis Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 90 reviews

Range of motion after breast augmentation

You should expect to have normal range of motion by now.  You need to call your surgeon for an evaluation to see if there is a problem with the surgery or if you need some aggressive range of motion exercizes or even physical therapy.  Also, implants can settle at different rates, but have your surgeon evaluate this as well.

Bruce E. Genter, MD, FACS
Abington Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 16 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.