When can I go back to work? I am a massage therapist and was wondering when I could go back to work after sub muscular implants.

Doctor Answers 16

Returning to work after Breast Augmentation

Thank you for your question. You should resume normal activities at a slow, gradual pace, and your return to work will depend on your occupation. Light exercise (not involving your arms) can commence after a week. Heavy lifting and strenuous exercise should be avoided for between four and six weeks. Best of luck!Dhaval M. Patel Double board certified Plastic surgeon Hoffman Estates Barrington Oakbrook Chicago

Hoffman Estates Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 78 reviews

It’s best to wait approximately 6 weeks before returning to work.

As a massage therapist, you use a lot of your upper body strength in your work. It’s these very muscles which you’ll need to rest as you recover from your breast augmentation. As a general guideline, I recommend that each woman who gets breast implants wait about 6 weeks before returning to vigorous exercise that engages the upper body. I would categorize massage therapy as vigorous. Certainly stay in touch with your plastic surgeon and run this question by them, as they’re best equipped to speak to your situation. Nonetheless, I think it’s prudent for you to take care of your new breasts and healing tissue and give your body the time it needs to recover. 

Ricardo A. Meade, MD
Dallas Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 108 reviews

Recovery time.

Thank you for your question, all depends on when you had your surgery and your surgeons instructions. Consult your surgeon about it to best recommendation.

BA Recovery/Massage Therapist

Thank you for your question, and I wish you a speedy recovery. The answers and preferences here will vary from MD to MD.  Nonetheless, it is best to discuss with your Board Certified Plastic Surgeon his/her specific recommendations as far as return to activity. The recovery after BA surgery varies widely from patient to patient as well as their level of discomfort during this time. Generally, the first 4-7 days are reserved for rest and overall recovery, and after that patients can slowly work their way back with gradual low risk activities. I prefer to wait at least 6-8 weeks for repetitive upper body lifting/movements and arm use so that the muscles, skin incisions and breast tissues have had adequate time to heal and settle before being stressed. The recovery routine will best be determined by your Board Certified Plastic Surgeon so be sure to touch base with him/her on their specific recommendations.

Benjamin J. Cousins MD
Board Certified Plastic Surgeon

Benjamin J. Cousins, MD
Miami Beach Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

Resuming Active Occupations Following Breast Augmentation

As I advise my patients, if your work keeps you sedentary, you may return whenever you feel up to it. If your work is strenuous, wait until your work activity does not cause any superficial pain.

Some employers will modify a person’s job duties so they can back sooner, but without physical activity. Our office can provide our patients with a note stating they are not to engage in strenuous activity for a specified period of time. The note will not disclose what procedure they have underwent. Therefore, you may have to request a similar note from your surgeon if you are not independently employeed. I recommend avoiding heavy lifting and strenuous #activity for six weeks following your #BreastSurgery. With that said, it may help you plan your return to work accordingly.

As for heavy lifting and other #strenuous #activities, it should be avoided for six weeks following your #BreastSurgery. You may, however, do normal activities at any time if they cause no pain or #discomfort. Let your body tell you what you can or cannot do. Aerobic exercise will raise your blood pressure, which could cause late bleeding and harm your result. Once you begin exercising again, start gently and let your body tell you what it can tolerate. Don’t rush!! It may require the full 6 weeks before you can do any upper body work-outs, yoga, etc.

If you have concerns about your healing, or pain that you question to be unusual, it is important to call your plastic surgeon to discuss these further asked to be examined.

Jed H. Horowitz, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 94 reviews

When can i go back to work after breast augmentation?

Thank you for your question. Recovery after a breast augmentation can be very straight forward with the right surgeon. Precise technique with minimal trauma leads to little pain after surgery, with many of our patients going out for dinner the same night as surgery. Every surgeon will have his/her own preferences as to recovery for specific procedures. I suggest you wait at least 3 weeks before running or exercise, and in this case your job which requires effort with your arms. It's best to be sure that everything is healed. There is always a chance of causing bleeding if you start much before that time. Breast augmentation is a very powerful technique in the right hands, and can have dramatic results in a variety of breasts types. Most important is a consultation with a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon regarding this procedure. Don’t settle for less!

Working Post Op/ Massage Therapy


Thank you for your question. Typically I  recommend a couple of weeks off from an active job requiring regular use of your arms- however Massage therapy could qualify as strenuous, upper body work. I advise my patients to avoid lifting over 10 lbs and strenuous push/pull activity which flexes the pectoral muscles strongly for 6 weeks. Each Plastic Surgeon has their own preferred post op activity restriction protocols so It is best that you ask your Plastic Surgeon and let them advise you.

All the best

Back to work after BA?

Generally speaking, you'll feel pretty rotten for the first 3-4 days. After that, most women start to turn a corner - feeling better at 1 week, quite good at 2 weeks and approaching normal(ish) by around 3 weeks. At 3 weeks my patients can start to do exercises, but are told to back off if it hurts. For sedentary jobs, I recommend a week and a half off. As a massage therapist, you are using those pectorals muscles (a portion of which was dis-inserted) a lot. With that in mind, I would recommend waiting until at least 3 weeks and then seeing how it goes. If it's uncomfortable, I would hold back until you're able to perform your job pain free, which could even be up to 6 weeks, depending on how much you have to use those pectorals muscles. 

Returning to massage work after an augmentation

Hmmmm....no quick answer.  Massage therapists use a lot of upper body muscles which are the type of exercises I tell my patients to avoid for some amount of time.  Depending on how vigorous the exercise (or work), and how the results are looking, I tell my patients as short as 2 weeks and as long as 8.  One potential downside from starting too early is that when the muscle flexes, it pushes down and out on the implant and, to some degree, the desired result is up and in (cleavage).  That is quite simplified, but holds some merit.  

Eric Mariotti, MD
Walnut Creek Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 43 reviews

Work and breast augmentation

You should first talk to your surgeon since he knows you best. In general, you should wait 4-6 weeks to start vigorous activity.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 24 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.