Breast augmentation is changing the shape of the world. Also known as augmentation mammoplasty, breast augmentation has been a growing area of plastic surgery every year for the past decade. It is one of the most common plastic surgery procedures performed today. Breast augmentation is popularly done through the inframammary (breast fold) / peri areolar (along the junction of the black portion of the nipple with the skin) approach which leave scars on the breast. Many patients therefore prefer the Transaxillary (armpit) incision because it does not leave any scars on the breast.

The surgery may last approximately 2 - 3 hours and is carried out under general anaesthesia. It is done as day care and you can go home the same evening following the procedure.

Transaxillary Endoscopic breast augmentation is a technique of breast enlargement where breast implants are placed through an armpit incision. The incision is about 5-5.5 cms, and well hidden in the depth of the armpit. When the incision heals, it is barely noticeable. With the transaxillary endoscopic breast approach, the breast implants can be placed below or above the chest muscle (also known as the pectoralis) with great precision.

Using an endoscope, a tube attached to fiberoptic equipment that allows the breast augmentation procedure to be visualized on a television screen, the pocket for the implant is carefully developed. The advantage is that the breast augmentation surgeon has total control of the operation. There is no blind dissection of the space for the implant. The fold below the breast (inframammary fold) as well as the medial aspect of the pocket (the cleavage area) is precisely created.

With the transaxillary endoscopic breast approach, the breast implants can be placed below or above the chest muscle (also known as the pectoralis) with great precision.

The advantage is that the breast augmentation surgeon has total control of the operation. There is no blind dissection of the space for the implant. The fold below the breast (inframammary fold) as well as the medial aspect of the pocket (the cleavage area) is precisely created.

The post op recovery is the same as that following a conventional breast augmentation. Compression garments / or a band might be given which needs to be worn to provide support and comfort, minimize swelling, and help to maintain the position of the implants.

The armpit should be washed once a day and antibiotic ointment applied. The stitches dissolve on their own. Deodorant can be used in 2 days. Shaving can be resumed in 2 days with care.

Is it more difficult to have the implants placed through the armpit?

Ans.: It is probably easier. The pocket for the placement of the implant underneath the muscle is entered very easily through the armpit incision. The dissection of the breast pocket is completed with the assistance of the endoscope. The breast is lifted up with no cutting of the breast tissue. With the visual guidance of the endoscope, the implants can be placed precisely in the proper position.

The armpit should be washed once a day and antibiotic ointment applied. The stitches dissolve on their own. Deodorant can be used in 2 days. Shaving can be resumed in 2 days with care.

How does the armpit incision heal? And what does it look like?

Ans.: The armpit incision is about 5-5.5 cms. in length. Normally, it is barely seen and blends in with the natural creases of the armpit. Many patients believe that it heals better than the periareolar or crease incision.

How are the results with transaxillary endoscopic breast augmentation?

Ans.: The results with the armpit incision are excellent and patients are thrilled with the results. One potential drawback of the transaxillary incision is the risk of less than perfect placement of the implants. This is because the surgeon is working further away from the actual surgical destination, leaving more possibility for error. When a surgeon is trained and experienced with the transaxillary technique, the risk of error in implant placement is very low.


Who does transaxillary endoscopic breast augmentation?

Not every plastic surgeon performs the armpit incision for breast enhancement. Transaxillary breast augmentation requires special training and expertise. Your plastic surgeon should be able to perform breast implants through a variety of incisions including the armpit, periareolar or crease incision to give you the most options and can recommend what is best for you. The final choice is yours.