Breastfeeding With Implants: All Your Questions Answered

Woman with breast implants holding new baby

Many women have questions about if they can breastfeed with implants and wonder if it’s safe for their babies. We interviewed two of our breast augmentation surgeons and asked them to answer some of the more common questions around breastfeeding and implants.

Can you nurse after a breast augmentation?

Women of all ages come to Belcara Health to explore their breast augmentation options. Some of them are women who are looking to have their first child, or plan on growing their family. If you expect to have children, you might be concerned about whether a breast augmentation, specifically implants, will affect your ability to breastfeed. Luckily, with a bit of forethought during surgery, you should have nothing to fear about nursing after a breast augmentation procedure. 

Can I breastfeed with implants?

Yes! The majority of women can nurse with breast implants. But, for those wanting to be as careful as possible, surgeons can avoid moving tissues involved in milk production.

During a typical breast implant surgery at Belcara Health, our doctors intentionally avoid ducts and glands that produce milk after pregnancy. However, you should always discuss your future breastfeeding plans with your surgeon beforehand, so they know which precautions to take during the procedure.

Is breastfeeding with implants safe?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has found no evidence that materials from an implant (such as silicone) can enter a mother’s milk supply. Depending on where they’re placed, breast implants can theoretically impede the amount of breast milk produced. However, this can typically be avoided by using “breastfeeding safe” techniques during your breast implant surgery.

Will breastfeeding ruin my implants?

No! There are multiple ways that surgeons can ensure breast implants stay intact and protect a patient’s ability to breastfeed after a breast augmentation. Incision location and implant placement are two of the most important factors.

  • Incision location: Incisions during breast implant surgery have the potential to disrupt milk glands or damage nerves. You want your breast surgeon to avoid periareolar incisions as they circle around the areola and cut close to the nipple. Inframammary or transaxillary incisions are safer options as they run along the outer edges of the breast and are farther from glandular tissue.
  • Implant placement: Breast implants placed too close to breast tissue can occasionally put pressure on glands and negatively affect milk production. To keep the implant away from direct tissue contact, it can be placed underneath the chest muscle.

Even without specialized care, both breast implants and breastfeeding ability usually stay intact after surgery. With proper incision and implant placement, women can truly rest easy. Be sure to discuss your family plans with a board-certified plastic surgeon during a one-on-one consultation. Together, you can customize your procedure and protect your ability to nurse with breast implants.

Browse our before-and-after gallery to see pictures from our own breast augmentation patients. If you would like to learn more about your breast augmentation options here in Baltimore, or have specific questions regarding breast implants and nursing, request a consultation online or call us at (410) 417-7822.

Our Practitioners Who Specialize in Breast Augmentation

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Dr. Michael D. Cohen

Medical Director, Board-Certified Plastic Surgeon & Breast Specialist

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Dr. Gary A. Vela

Board-Certified Plastic Surgeon & Body Contouring Specialist

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