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How to Relieve Nerve Pain After Breast Augmentation

By Dr. Charles J. Galanis

How to Relieve Nerve Pain After Breast Augmentation

Nerves in the breasts and chest area can be significantly affected during breast augmentation surgery. Because of this, after surgery, patients may experience nerve pain, numbness, tingling, itching, and other symptoms. These are, unfortunately, quite common, but the good news is, they generally disappear over time.

To help improve your comfort even faster, we’ve outlined some suggestions below. Let’s take a look at how to relieve nerve pain after breast augmentation.

Nerve Pain After Breast Augmentation: Relief Tips

1. Take your prescribed pain medication as directed.

A certain amount of pain is to be expected following any type of cosmetic surgery, including breast surgery. Therefore, your surgeon is going to prescribe pain medications that you can take for the first few days following surgery.

Most patients are able to switch from a narcotic pain medication to an over-the-counter pain med after a short time. These will help to mitigate nerve pain and will keep you more comfortable as you heal.

2. Wear your supportive compression bra as directed.

The compression bra that you are put into following surgery will need to be worn for a set period of time. This bra is meant to keep your incisions (and your breasts in general) in place as you heal.

The garments should also help with discomfort. Finally, wearing a compression garment following surgery will help to keep the swelling down, which can help with nerve pain as well.

3. Get plenty of rest.

Resting on the couch during the day, using relaxation techniques and meditation when possible, and getting a great night’s sleep after surgery can all help to alleviate pain as well as general stress.

It can be difficult going through the healing process of getting breast implants. But staying calm and relaxed can certainly help.

4. Use cold compresses if allowed.

Cold therapy in the form of cold compresses can help you reduce swelling and pain. Just be sure that you are following the proper application technique and only for the advised duration of time.

Typically, you should only ice your breasts for around 15 minutes at a time, and it’s usually okay to do this a few times a day. But again, always consult with your plastic surgeon first to make sure that compresses are allowed for your situation.

Breast augmentation pain and swelling

5. Try light stretching.

Nerve pain can sometimes be exacerbated by poor blood circulation, which is why getting up and gently moving around can be beneficial. Remember that you should not be engaging in any challenging physical activities, nor should you be lifting anything heavy during breast augmentation recovery.

Doing some light stretches as recommended by your plastic surgeon (and possibly is physical therapy) can help to increase your range of motion, reduce swelling, and improve nerve pain in the process.

What’s Normal After Breast Augmentation?


Swelling is a normal reaction following any type of surgery, including cosmetic surgery. Your body has gone through a trauma and is trying to heal.

Extra fluid will be retained that contains enzymes and white blood cells. As long as the swelling is going down overall as each day passes and you do not have a fever, severely one-sided swelling, or other worrying symptoms, this is completely normal.


Bruising is caused by damaged blood vessels in the breast tissue. The blood vessels near your incision sites and around your new implants will have been injured during the surgery process, and this leaked blood will be visible through the skin. It’s normal to have bruising following breast surgery, and it should clear up in the first few weeks.


Soreness and pain are unfortunately also common symptoms following breast augmentation surgery. Most patients find, however, that soreness dissipates over the first week. You’ll notice more freedom of movement and less pain in general as the healing process continues.


Tightness can feel like the skin on your breasts is very taut, and the tightness can sometimes even be felt around the chest muscle as well — sometimes, like a burning pain.

This is quite normal as often, the implants are placed behind the chest muscles, and this requires the muscles (and other breast tissue) to stretch, which can cause breast augmentation pain as well as the “tightness” sensation.

Feeling like your breasts are high up on your chest

Because your breasts will be swollen, tight, and slightly painful after breast augmentation surgery, this can cause your breast implants to be slightly pushed up on the chest. As you get pain relief and the swelling and tightness goes down, you’ll see your breasts “settle” and position lower down on your chest wall.

pain after breast augmentation

Some tingling or numbness

When the nerves are injured during surgery, tingling and numbness are common symptoms to experience before you regain complete normal sensation. This goes for breast augmentation as well as other surgeries to the breast — even breast cancer surgery (lumpectomies or mastectomies).

FAQ: Sharp Nerve Pain After Breast Augmentation

What if I have nerve pain in my arm after breast augmentation?

Nerve pain in arm after breast augmentation is not typically normal. It’s possible it could have been caused by the position you were in during surgery, but it would be best to contact your surgeon to further understand what’s going on.

Will I have nerve pain years after breast augmentation?

It is very rare to have chronic nerve pain years after breast implant surgery. Although uncommon, it is possible to have pain related to capsular contracture or perhaps poor implant placement. However, nerve pain does not occur years after surgery. Contact your surgeon directly if you are experiencing chronic pain years out from your procedure.

Call Today to Set Up a Consultation Appointment

Are you interested in breast augmentation surgery? Board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Charles Galanis can help you achieve your breast goals with breast implant surgery in Beverly Hills.

We invite you to give our office a call to set up your first consultation appointment with Dr. Galanis and start your breast augmentation journey today.


  1. https://www.plasticsurgery.org/news/blog/will-your-breast-implants-last-a-lifetime

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