Q. The breast implants I had placed ten years ago are too firm and hard now and are starting to become painful. My friend mentioned that I may have a capsular contracture. Do I need surgery?
A. It's very likely, yes. When any foreign object is placed in the body, the body forms a lining, or capsule, around it. In some patients and under certain circumstances the capsule that forms can thicken and contract aggressively. When this capsular contracture occurs around a soft breast implant, the breast may change contour and become firm. Capsular contracture can occur at any time after breast augmentation. When the capsular contracture causes the breast to become firm, painful, or interfere with mammography, the breast capsule should be removed.
Q. If I have capsular contracture surgery, can I have my breast implants replaced as well?
A. Yes! Many women who have their breast capsules removed also opt to have their implants exchanged at the same time. Frequently women may have had their implants for a significant period of time and wish to upsize, downsize, change profile, or implant type (i.e. saline for silicone).
Q. What is the recovery time like for capsular contracture surgery?
A.The recovery period after capsular contracture surgery may be longer than for a primary breast augmentation procedure as the surgery may be more extensive. It is also important that patients do no exert themselves significantly following the procedure as that may increase their risk for hematoma and repeat capsule formation.
Q. Will I need to have drains?
A. Drains may be used following the surgery depending on the amount of surgery required, change in implant size, change in implant plane, and surgeon preference.