Thirty-five augmented women underwent mammography using both the standard implant-compression technique and, when possible, the implant-displacement technique; all had preaugmentation film-screen mammography available for evaluation. The area of mammographically visualized breast tissue before and after augmentation mammaplasty was measured using a transparent grid.
Patients with subglandular implants had a mean decrease of 49 percent of measurable tissue area with compression mammography and a 39 percent decrease with displacement mammography. Patients with submuscular implants had a 28 percent decrease in measurable tissue area with compression mammography and a 9 percent decrease with displacement mammography. Anterior breast tissue was seen better with displacement mammography; posterior breast tissue, with compression mammography. Most patients had some degree of parenchymal scarring and lower image quality after augmentation. State-of-the-art mammography was not possible in most patients augmented with silicone-gel-filled implants.