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The transaxillary incision is one surgical option that can be used during breast augmentation. The transaxillary incision is made under the arm, so that there are no scars in the breast area. It is possible to see the transaxillary scar when the arms are lifted, but the incisions are placed as inconspicuously as possible to mitigate the visibility of the breast augmentation scar.
When the transaxillary incision is chosen, the surgeon may conduct the surgery with or without an endoscope. An endoscope is a small surgical camera that allows the surgeon to guide the implants into the proper breast area. During the breast augmentation surgery, the doctor will make the transaxillary incision and cut a channel from the armpit to the breast area.
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.
If there are postoperative complications that require a subsequent surgery, it is generally not possible to reuse the same transaxillary incision. During a corrective surgery, the surgeon will typically have to use the periareolar or inframammary technique, adding another scar from breast augmentation. Some studies have also shown that the transaxillary technique can cause a loss of nipple sensation after surgery.