Recent research shows that women with breast implants who breastfeed do not experience more sagging than women without implants. Board-certified plastic surgeon in Sacramento Dr. Wayne Yamahata says this matches what his patients experience.
Sacramento, California (November 2013) — Dr. Wayne Yamahata (www.wayneyamahatamd.com), a board-certified plastic surgeon in Sacramento, says the results of a recent study offer evidence for what he has observed for years at his practice: Breastfeeding does not necessarily cause sagging in patients with breast implants.
“Some of the top questions I get about breast implants have to do with breastfeeding,” Dr. Yamahata says. “I hope this research puts some of the concerns my patients have to rest.”
The study, published in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery®, tracked 120 mothers with breast implants. About half of them breastfed their children, and half didn’t. When the researchers took measurements after a year, there was no significant difference in sagging between the groups.
“In the past, women with implants may have decided not to breastfeed their babies because they were worried about compromising the cosmetic results they had invested so much time and money in,” Dr. Yamahata says. “Although breastfeeding isn’t for everyone, it can increase a mother’s bond with her child, boost the child’s immune system, and increase nutritional intake.”
Dr. Yamahata says he may discuss these study results with his patients interested in getting breast implants in Sacramento.
“This is really valuable knowledge for women,” he says. “Family planning is often a consideration for my female patients, because pregnancy has a big effect on many of the areas women typically address with plastic surgery, such as the breasts.”
The study, performed by Dr. Norma Cruz, a professor of plastic surgery at the University of Puerto Rico School of Medicine, noted that breast sagging did increase in both groups of women, but it was caused by the hormones that accompany pregnancy rather than by breastfeeding. The rush of hormones during pregnancy causes the breasts to expand, but when those levels drop after childbirth, the breasts deflate.
Dr. Yamahata says this is the concern of a lot of mothers interested in getting a “mommy makeover” or breast augmentation at his Sacramento practice.
“In many cases, these mothers are still planning to have more children in the future,” Dr. Yamahata says. “They want to restore volume to their breasts, but they also want to know whether the effects of pregnancy will hurt their surgical results. That’s a valid concern for procedures like a tummy tuck, but now at least women can rest easy about breastfeeding and implants.”
Another question Dr. Yamahata often hears on the topic: Will I still be able to breastfeed if I get implants? The answer is yes, he says.
“Surgeons can use a number of different placement techniques that avoid the nipples and milk ducts to ensure that breastfeeding is still possible,” he said.