Are Breast Implants Placed Above Or Under The Muscle?

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As you begin to research breast augmentation, you may feel overwhelmed by the seemingly endless options that are available and the long list of decisions you’ll need to make. You don’t have to go it alone, though! Acclaimed plastic surgeon Dr. Michelle Eagan and the caring team at New Orleans Plastic Surgery understand the sometimes challenging nature of choosing the best breast augmentation approach and are committed to helping guide patients through each step of the process to ensure they feel comfortable, confident, and excited going into surgery. Learn more about one of the most fundamental aspects of breast augmentation surgery – implant placement – including what options you have and why implant placement matters.

What do I need to know about getting breast implants?

When it comes to breast augmentation surgery, patients will need to make several important decisions leading up to the procedure, including:

  • Type of breast implants (saline or silicone gel)
  • Size of breast implants
  • Implant profile
  • Implant placement
  • Whether to include a breast lift (mastopexy)

The majority of these selections will depend heavily on the patient’s existing anatomy, her desired outcome, and Dr. Eagan’s professional recommendations. During your initial consultation for breast augmentation in New Orleans, Dr. Eagan will examine your breasts, evaluate your overall body type/frame, discuss your concerns and goals, and help formulate a customized surgical plan that best meets your needs.

Should I get my implants under the muscle or above the muscle?

One aspect of breast augmentation that relies most heavily on the surgeon’s input is whether to place the breast implants above, partially underneath, or fully underneath the chest muscle. Each option has its own unique set of applications and benefits. Generally speaking, however, surgeons typically recommend that thinner women, those with less native breast tissue, and those who select saline implants should opt for submuscular (under the chest muscle) placement. This is primarily due to the fact that the muscle tissue will help to conceal implant rippling, create a more natural-looking shape, and more effectively protect saline implants from potential rupture. Some of the most significant things to consider regarding subglandular vs. submuscular implant placement include:

Under the muscle


  • Conceals rippling
  • Protects implants
  • Creates more natural-looking breast shape
  • More natural-feeling result


  • Somewhat longer/more uncomfortable recovery period
  • Breast shape can change when chest muscle is flexed

Above the muscle


  • Does not require cutting the chest muscle
  • Somewhat quicker/more comfortable recovery period
  • Implant shape does not change when chest muscle is flexed


  • Potential for more visible rippling
  • Typically results in a less natural look and/or feel
  • Can have a slightly higher rate of capsular contracture

Get the advice of a qualified, experienced plastic surgeon for your breast augmentation in New Orleans, LA

If you are overwhelmed or confused about how to choose the best type of breast implant, the right implant size, or the ideal implant placement, we can help! Call the award-winning team at New Orleans Plastic Surgery to schedule your private consultation today, and let distinguished plastic surgeon Dr. Michelle Eagan give you clarity, confidence, and excitement about getting the body of your dreams with breast augmentation in NOLA!

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.