What is the Internal Bra Technique? Here’s How it Works

Whether it’s size, shape or position, breasts are often an area of dissatisfaction among patients. Case in point: According to a recent report by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, breast augmentation continues to be one of the top five cosmetic surgical procedures – and that hasn’t changed since 2006. While a traditional breast augmentation addresses breast size, there’s a number of other procedures that help give the chest area a little extra support. One effective option? The internal bra technique.

For patients who are unhappy with the position and shape of their breasts, this procedure can offer a way to improve perkiness and support. Think of it like an invisible internal push-up bra. But how does this technique work exactly? And more importantly, what does the surgery involve? Here, Dr. Wilson at AW Plastic Surgery explains how he performs the procedure, who it is best suited for and what patients should know about recovery.

What exactly is the internal bra technique?

The internal bra technique is what it sounds like: a procedure that helps support the breasts, while lifting and stabilizing their position. Mimicking a push-up bra, a supporting mesh is placed along the lower portion of your breast, which acts as scaffolding. “This technique is considered a variation on a dual-plane breast augmentation,” Dr. Wilson says. For some background, a dual-plane augmentation (often referred to as partial submuscular placement) situates the implant partly behind the pectoralis muscle and the breast tissue.

How is the procedure performed?

Now that we’ve covered its purpose, let’s get into the nitty gritty. How is the internal bra technique actually performed? During surgery, a supporting material of decellularized porcine tissue is sutured to the lower portion of the pectoralis muscle as well as the chest wall. “The sling is partially sewn in, then the silicone gel breast implant is placed using a Keller funnel, a no-touch technique, antibiotic irrigation, and betadine solution,” Dr. Wilson says. “The remaining portion of the sling is then sutured in place.”

Who is a good candidate for the internal bra technique?

Sometimes, implants don’t work out as planned, and complications can occur. This is where the internal bra technique can help. “Internal bra is utilized most commonly in revisionary breast surgery, especially in patients that are experiencing implant malposition,” Dr. Wilson says. The procedure can help correct the lumpy, bubble-like appearance of implants that settle below the fold of the breast, otherwise known as “double bubble.” It can also help lift implants that droop too low on the chest wall, or what’s called “bottoming out.” What’s more, it can also be used in conjunction with a breast reduction or lift procedure to ensure better long-term results.

What should patients expect during and after the procedure?

Being prepared for what to expect during and after surgery can go a long way in ensuring a speedy recovery. “This procedure is done with a general anesthetic so the patient will be asleep,” Dr. Wilson says. Since it’s considered a major surgery that involves a general anesthetic as well as incisions, patients need to arrange for a ride home and plan to take some time off work. Expect to have a drain in place for about a week, and lay off any physical activities for two to three weeks – especially any form of exercise that involves the upper body. “Gentle activities such as walking are acceptable during this early period,” Dr. Wilson says.

Do patients experience any pain or discomfort?

Any surgical procedure typically involves some level of discomfort in the days or weeks that follow the surgery. As far as the internal bra technique goes, Dr. Wilson says patients often experience a distinct soreness where the internal bra is sutured in place. Typically, this subsides in about a week or two. “We also utilize a long term numbing injection to improve post operative pain and discomfort for the first 72 hours,” Dr. Wilson says. It takes close to 12 weeks for your body to fully heal, but the results are well-worth the wait.

If you’re unhappy with the look of your breasts, let us guide you through your options at AW Plastic Surgery. Reach out to us here for a consultation on how to correct implant malposition, and achieve a perkier, fuller appearance. We’re ready to help you look and feel your absolute best.