Dual plane breast augmentation: optimizing implant-soft-tissue relationships in a wide range of breast types

Plast Reconstr Surg. 2006 Dec;118(7 Suppl):81S-98S; discussion 99S-102S. doi: 10.1097/00006534-200612001-00012.


In breast augmentation, surgeons usually choose a pocket location for the implant behind breast parenchyma (retromammary), partially behind the pectoralis major muscle (partial retropectoral), or totally behind pectoralis major and serratus (total submuscular). Each of these implant pocket locations has specific indications, but each also has a unique set of tradeoffs. When applied to a wide range of breast types, each pocket location has limitations. Glandular ptotic and constricted lower pole breasts offer unique challenges that often are not solved without tradeoffs when using a strictly retromammary, partial retropectoral, or total submuscular pocket. This article describes specific indications and techniques for a dual plane approach to breast augmentation in several different breast types, introducing techniques that combine retromammary and partial retropectoral pocket locations in a single patient to optimize the benefits of each pocket location while limiting the tradeoffs and risks of a single pocket location. A total of 468 patients had dual plane augmentation between January of 1992 and March of 1998 using the specific techniques of dual plane augmentation described in this article. All patients were treated as outpatients and received general anesthesia. Indications, operative techniques, results, and complications for this series of patients are presented. Dual plane augmentation mammaplasty adjusts implant and tissue relationships to ensure adequate soft-tissue coverage while optimizing implant-soft-tissue dynamics to offer increased benefits and fewer tradeoffs compared with a single pocket location in a wide range of breast types.