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Will I Have Bruising After Breast Augmentation?

By Dr. Charles J. Galanis

Bruising After Breast Augmentation

You already know that certain side effects are normal after plastic surgery, but what about bruising after breast augmentation?
Below, we’ll discuss what you can expect in terms of bruising and swelling, discomfort, and other common symptoms after breast augmentation surgery.

Is Bruising And Swelling Normal After Breast Augmentation?

Yes, it is common to bruise post-breast implant surgery.

Normal bruising and swelling after breast augmentation surgery tends to last for one to two weeks at most near the incision site. But keep in mind that this symptom may linger for several more weeks in some patients.

It often depends on the patient and the extent of surgical techniques that are performed. If you have a breast augmentation with a lift, for example, you may have more bruising than a patient who only has breast augmentation surgery.

Why Does Bruising Occur After Breast Augmentation?

Post operative bruising after any type of breast surgery occurs because blood vessels are damaged. Specifically, the small vessels called capillaries that are located closest to the skin’s surface are damaged.

Small amounts of blood then leak out of these small vessels, which discolors the skin and creates a dark spot.

Basically any type of breast surgery (breast lift, breast reduction, etc.) will cause some level of bruising. Likewise, you probably know how easy it is to get a bruise from simply bumping into something or getting hit with something.

Fortunately, as is the case during breast augmentation recovery, bruises eventually heal and fade away.

When Should I Be Worried About Bruising After Cosmetic Surgery?Normal Bruising After Breast Augmentation

Again, it is totally normal to have bruises during the healing process after breast augmentation surgery. Both swelling and bruising are common side effects.

It’s also important to mention that bruising can get rather ugly during this time. For the first few days, bruises will look typical and be purple or blue in color.

But after a while, you may notice your bruises turning different colors. Yellow bruises after breast augmentation surgery is common at this time, as is green or brown bruising.

Take a look at breast augmentation bruising photos to see examples. You needn’t be alarmed by these color changes. They usually mark improvements in bruising, not a worsening effect.

In fact, it is rare that swelling and bruising continues after the two- or three-week mark of the recovery period. If it does continue, however, this may be cause for reaching out to your plastic surgeons.

Another worrisome sign would be worsening bruising that appears to be spreading to other parts of your body (or bruising that just won’t go away). Similarly, call your surgeon if you notice bruising in combination with other troublesome symptoms such as worsening significant swelling, severe pain, or bleeding. Again, this is rare.

How to Minimize Bruising and Swelling After Breast Augmentation

Frequently, breast implants patients ask for tips on how to minimize swelling of the breast tissue and reduce bruising post-surgery. After all, if bruising around your breast area and upper body is visible to others, this can make patients self-conscious when they return to work or school.

While we can’t make swelling and bruising simply disappear by snapping our fingers, we can provide some tips to promote healing on how to reduce the appearance of bruising a bit faster.

As always, be sure to check with your plastic surgeon before trying any of these tips:

#1 – Avoid blood thinning medications prior to breast surgery.

Your surgeon will always want to know about any supplements or certain medications you are taking prior to surgery. They may work with your primary physician to adjust these if necessary.

Anticoagulants (blood thinners) are one type of medication that will almost always need to be stopped or adjusted. One reason is that these substances can cause excessive bruising.

#2 – Do not smoke or drink alcohol.

Both smoking and alcohol can limit and slow down your body’s healing process. Smoking will slow down the healing process of wounds, and alcohol will actually make your blood vessels larger, potentially causing even more bruising and fluctations in blood pressure.

Yellow Bruising After Breast Augmentation#3 – Sleep with your upper body elevated.

Especially for reducing swelling, keeping your upper body elevated can work wonders. You’ll want to sit up or at an incline during the day and at night as well.

Sometimes, patients will purchase a wedge-shaped pillow to help prop them up at night especially. Regular pillows can achieve the same effect but may be more difficult to get comfortable with.

#4 – Avoid Strenuous Activities.

Avoid strenuous activities post-breast augmentation to prevent an increase blood flow, minimizing bruising and swelling. Refrain from heavy weight lifting, exercise, and bending for weeks.

#5 – Follow your surgeon’s post operative instructions.

Ultimately, if you want to truly reduce bruising and reduce swelling after surgery, be sure to follow your surgeon’s post operative care instructions.

They may recommend additional tips such as gentle breast massage, using ice packs or cold compresses to promote the healing process, or regular walking to help promote healthy blood circulation.

FAQ: Breast Implant Surgery

Is breast swelling normal after breast augmentation surgery?

Yes. Just as with bruising, swelling is the body’s natural response after any type of surgical procedure. It is the accumulation of fluid in your breast tissue.

Over time, increasing healthy blood circulation with easy walks, using gentle massage, cold compresses, ice packs on the affected areas, and other tips can help reduce swelling. However, always talk to your plastic surgeon before trying any of these.

Can a breast implant rupture?

Yes. Both saline implants and silicone breast implants can rupture. The latter can be more dangerous because it’s hard to see when a silicone gel leak is occurring. Breasts often look the same, and the leak may not be spotted until a routine imaging scan.

On the other hand, if you have saline implants, you’ll notice the rupture right away. Your body will absorb the draining saline solution, and your surgeon will be able to address and fix the affected breast immediately.

How long are you at risk for hematoma after breast augmentation?

Post-breast augmentation hematomas are categorized into three types: acute (3-7 days post-surgery), subacute (7 days to 3-5 months), and late (3-5 months or later).

How long does bruising and swelling last after breast implant surgery?

After breast augmentation, expect initial tightness and peak swelling near the incision sites for around 3-4 days. Swelling may persist for 3 months, with full implant settling in about 6 months.

Set Up a Consultation Appointment Today

Whenever you are considering a plastic surgery procedure, always choose a one on one consultation with a qualified plastic surgeon with board certification.

Dr. Charles Galanis is a double board certified plastic surgeon specializing in breast augmentation in Beverly Hills. Please call our office today to set up a consultation with Dr. Galanis. We look forward to hearing from you.



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