How Can I Reduce Areola Scars from Breast Augmentation?

Doctor Answers 61

Improving your scars

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 Since this question was posted 6 years ago, I suspect that my answer will be of most value to someone reading this who is currently contemplating surgery.  The areolar scars from a breast augmentation are extremely well hidden, and heal remarkable well, in the vast majority of patients, regardless of skin type or tendency to form bad scars.  I believe the planning of the incision, and a proper closure have the most impact on the final scar.  A poorly placed scar at the areola will be visible, even if it heals well.  A properly placed scar at the areola will be visible, if not closed properly.  Existing unsightly scars can be corrected by revising the scar, and performing a meticulous closure.  
If you scar is healing well, and you are looking to get the best result possible, addition of scar modification products like silicone sheets or silicone gel are the most beneficial.   You should start these treatment roughly 2 weeks after surgery, and continue to use them for a minimum of two months.

Good luck!

Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 46 reviews

Fading Scars

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  • Scars will fade with time. Scars require 18 months to mature and get worse (at 6-9 months), before they get better (18 months).
  • Use scar therapy creams as recommended on the label. Scar therapy is most effective in the first 6 months after surgery.
  • Bleaching cream could be helpful if you are developing dark pigmentation
  • Avoid ANY tanning rays/ultra-violet for 6 months, after surgery
  • Laser treatments of scars may be a useful adjunct (ask your surgeon)

Paul C. Zwiebel, MD
Denver Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 46 reviews

Scars are Permanent

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There is no way to remove scars (other than replacing them with other scars).

There are several treatments with scientific evidence that make small improvements in normal healing scars.

They include:

1. Scar massage

2. Silicone sheeting

3. Topicals like Mederma

Timing of the use of these treatments is important and using something like Mederma too early can cause wound healing problems.

Remember, it won't remove the scar but it will make them less noticeable.

For atypical scars (keloids and hyertrophic scars there are additional treatments like steroid injections which carry separate risks but may be of some benefit).

I hope this helps.

Steven Williams, MD

Top 4 tips to reduce areolar scars after breast implants

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Scars will always fade with time. There are several steps after surgery to speed up the rate of improvement. Here are a list of 5 top tips for scar improvement:

  • Massage scars until they soften
  • Apply silicone sheets (available in pharmacies)
  • Avoid direct sun exposure and use sunscreen
  • Apply lightening creams

If all else fails, talk to your plastic surgeon about revising the scar. That is a relatively simple and quick procedure.

Raffy Karamanoukian, MD, FACS
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 95 reviews

Breast incision management

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Thank you for your question. Breast incisions can be managed using a multimodal approach:
1) Scar massage - starting as soon as the surgical dressings come off and the incisions are sealed
2) Silicone sheets or scar gels for about six months to year
3) Embrace - a tension reducing dressing for the first 2 months
4) Fractionated lasers to help blend the scar into the background - done as a series, starting about 4 weeks after surgery and repeated every four weeks for six months.
5) Sunscreen to prevent the scars from darkening

How to reduce areolar scars

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The best way to reduce an areolar scar is not to make one in the first place! For any scar I make, I try to set the skin up to heal with minimal tension (by what sutures I use and how I place them) and  we have a very specific protocol we will all you through including silicone gel sheeting.  Your surgeon likely has a protocol they prefer and you should follow it and their advice.  

Areola Scars from Breast Augmentation

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An areola incision is not my preferred incision for a breast augmentation because they can be more perceptible and they are inconsistent for healing. If you are considering an areola incision, several things should be noted. If you have large , distinct areolas then it may be easy to perform an incision around that area, but remember that the chance of nipple sensory loss is about 15% in this area versus 5-7% from an inframammary fold incision which can be hidden in the fold. Certainly, in patients of color I do not recommend areola incisions as they do not heal, in my experience, as well as other incisions such as inframammary fold incisions.

Rod J. Rohrich, MD
Dallas Plastic Surgeon

How Can I Reduce Areola Scars from Breast Augmentation?

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How long ago was your surgery done ? If it is less than 12 months ago, so you still have a good chance that the scars get better if you deal properly with them.

The first 24 months post op the scars are somewhat active, so you should do repeated massage of the scars daily, and you may use silicon gel and lightning cream. Laser treatment is also may be very efficient. Within 6 months the scars will most probably improve. Do not expose them to the sun during this period as well.
I advise you to do the above procedures and be patient.

In time they may become very discrete.

Ercan Karacaoglu, MD
Turkey Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

Options to improve scar healing

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Scars after Breast Augmentation should heal nicely, however, there are several things I recommend to my patients to help accelerate the process of scar healing and give the best result. 1) Scar massage, back and forth in the direction of the scar using a lubricant such as Pure Vitamin E Oil, Aquaphor, etc starting 2-3 weeks after surgery, twice a day for the 1st three months. 2) Silicone patches for scars and 3) Avoid any direct sun exposure to a fresh scar for the first year after surgery.

Renato Saltz, MD
Salt Lake City Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

Improving areola scars

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Surgical scars should heal well with a fine line scar if:

1) there is relatively little tension on the closure,

2) it is performed with good technique, and

3) there is no post op infection or other problems.  

To improve your scars they can be revised if they have matured.  When the revision is performed if there is likely to be tension on the closure a purse-string incision can be made and a permanent suture can be used to keep the tension off of the incision.

All the best,

Dr Repta

Remus Repta, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 173 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.