I'm 16 with Asymmetry, Is a Breast Augmentation An Option For Me Right Now?

I'm 16 with asymmetrical breast, the right side sags & sometimes causes my side+the center of my chest to hurt if I don't have bra on for an extended period of time also being a teen with asymmetrical breast is difficult(bra shopping, swim class, changing in front of others, ect.) so I'm really self-conscious. My family fully understands and supports the fact I want a breast augmentation however I AM still a minor so realistically speaking, is a BA by a respectable doctor an option at this time?

Doctor Answers 4

Under 18 with breast concerns

Hi Nay 219, If there is only a cosmetic concern with breast asymmetry and there is not a huge difference in breast size or an absent breast, the FDA strictly prohibits implants in those women under 18 years of age and also limits silicone gel implants to those women over 22 years old. There are exceptions in those reconstructive cases or where there is a compelling psychological concern. I would see a board certified plastic surgeon with a good experience and a busy breast practice for further guidance. Breast asymmetry occurs in all women to some degree. Sometimes is is a good idea to get the opinion of a psychologist who works with teenagers and body issues. If they feel that there is an appropriate  physical or psychological  concern, than you might benefit. You need to be made aware that implants do not last forever and that there are complications and long term considerations with implants. 

Bellevue Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

Minor with major breast asymmetry

You have many excellent questions and you have obviously given this a good deal of thought and have discussed your concerns with your parents.  Your first step will be to have a consultation with an experienced plastic surgeon.  At that time recommendations can be made and the procedure can be explained in detail as it applies specifically to you and your unique anatomy.  Your age does present a small hurdle.  Implants are not recommended for women under 18 years of age.  As the surgeon we have to weight the risks vs. the benefits to each and every surgery we perform.  If your breast growth has been stable for at least one year and your weight stable for at least one year then the surgery may be appropriate.  Take the next step and find a plastic surgeon who understands your concerns. You may be told that you need to wait a year or two it is just not possible to give your a firm yes or no at this point.  Good luck to you,  Dr. Z

Jeffrey Zwiren, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

Teen with breasty asymmetry

Thank you for your question. In my opinion, the best step at this point is to see your regular doctor for an evaluation.  Breast asymmetry is common.  I tell my patients their breasts are sisters, but not twins!  Most women have mild to moderate asymmetry, but it sounds like yours may be more severe.  Sometimes there are underlying medical reasons for severe asymmetry such as Poland syndrome or tuberous breast deformity.  It is important to determine if this is the case.  If so, your breast surgery might be considered reconstructive.  There are more options available for reconstructive breast surgery in minors.  In the absence of an underlying medical condition, we are restricted in the use of breast implants until age 18 for saline and 22 for silicone.  You could still consider a breast reduction or lift on the larger side.  It is important to talk openly with your family about this decision.  Breast surgery is associated with lifelong consequences - good and bad.  Having breast surgery before you have children could affect your ability to breastfeed. If you opt for breast implants, you are committing to multiple surgeries in your lifetime - breast implants do not last forever and would likely need to be replaced (possibly several times) during your lifetime.  While I understand that no one knows what it is like to have your body but you, it is essential that you talk to an adult woman who loves you for guidance and support in this difficult time.

Andrew Jimerson, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.4 out of 5 stars 543 reviews

I'm 16 with Asymmetry, Is a Breast Augmentation An Option For Me Right Now?

I am sorry to hear about the physical and psychosocial concerns the breast asymmetry have caused you, at this early age.  You should be aware, that your age does not pose a major issue when it comes to breast surgery. It makes a lot of sense to proceed with surgery for patients at your early age IF the appropriate indications are present. Obviously, careful consideration should be paid to the pros/cons of the decision.  You should be aware of the potential risk/complications associate with surgery and the definite need for further surgery in the future.

 I am glad to hear that you have your family's support and understanding.  You will need parental consent when it comes time to proceed.

 When the time is right, seek consultation with well experienced board-certified plastic surgeons who will be able to discuss your concerns and the best way to achieve your goals.

 You may find the attached link (devoted to breast asymmetry issues) helpful to you as you do your “homework”.

Best wishes.

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,499 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.