Reasons Behind Implant Revision

Obviously, when a breast implant ruptures it needs to be replaced. But there are a number of other reasons women come to Dr. Kearney for breast implant revision surgery. Here are the common reasons.

Capsular contracture

When an implant is placed into the body, there is a reaction, as you would assume. This reaction is called the “capsule” and it is made up of calcified cells and scar tissue. If this capsule becomes very thick and causes the implant to shift or the breast to feel very firm, or if there is pain from the constricting scar tissue, this is called capsular contracture. If the capsule is very calcified, Dr. Kearney will remove it along with the implant. If it isn’t, he usually will leave it in place. If there is a rupture of a silicone implant, the capsule may contain silicone shell fragments, silicone gel, and inflammatory cells that all need to be removed prior to placing new implants.

Changing the implant size

Some women are almost immediately unhappy with the implant size they selected. It’s wise to wait one full year before making any decisions about revision surgery to change your implants, however. This allows for any swelling to fully subside and for the implants to settle. If the patient still wants to change her implant size, Dr. Kearney will enter through the original incisions. If a larger implant is desired, he will increase the size of the pocket, the space in the breast to hold the implant. If the patient seeks smaller implants, he will reduce the size of the pocket with sutures to fit the smaller implants. In cases of reduction, a breast lift may be done in conjunction with the implant revision to remove any sagging tissue and possibly relocate the nipples.

Implant position

Sometimes a less experienced surgeon will place the implant pockets either too far away or too close together and the spacing between the breasts looks unnatural. In these cases, Dr. Kearney will use scar tissue from the capsule and will reconstruct new pockets for the implants in better positions.

Implant rippling

Occasionally, particularly with saline implants placed atop the chest muscle, the implants show rippling and the edges may even be able to be felt. In these cases, Dr. Kearney enters through the original incision and replaces the implants with better muscle coverage. This may involve switching implant types and/or placing them in new breast pockets.

Implant removal

When a patient decides she no longer wants to have her implants, they are removed through the same incisions. Dr. Kearney will also remove the capsule if it is calcified and thick. It’s likely a breast lift will be needed to remove excess skin that has stretched to accommodate the implants.

While breast augmentation is a life-changing procedure, the results may not be what the patient had hoped for. Of course, expectations need to be realistic. But this is another reason to opt for a surgeon with extensive experience, such as Dr. Kearney, to perform the surgery. Do your research beforehand and the odds are you’ll be happy with your results.

Do you questions about a possible need for revision surgery for your breast implants? Call Dr. Kearney at (858) 677-9352 to make an appointment.

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Our office is now open!

Your health (and ours) is our highest priority so we are making a few changes to our reopening so that you can feel safe and confident coming in to see us. We are of course following all federal and local guidelines such as wearing masks and conducting phone screenings prior to your appointment but we are also implementing the following:

      Increasing the frequency of cleaning and sterilization to not only include exam rooms but also the waiting room, restroom, all doors, counters, etc.

      Offering multiple hand sanitizer locations throughout the office

      Reducing the number of appointments per day as well as our office hours, to limit the number of people in the office, including staff members

      Minimizing patient overlap to allow for proper social distancing

      Testing all surgery patients for COVID-19 at their pre-operative appointments

      Asking patients to leave family members or friends at home, unless they are coming with their primary caregiver. Please leave children at home as well

 

How can you help?

      Come alone to your appointment, unless you need your primary caregiver with you

      Please wear a mask or face covering to your visit and keep it on unless you are asked by Dr. Kearney or an RN to remove it

      Postpone your visit if you have traveled by air or experienced symptoms in the last 14 days

      Use a pen from the holder marked “clean” and put it in the one marked “used” when you’re done

      Use the hand sanitizers in our office

      In the rare case there is someone at the front desk when you come in please take a seat until we call you and maintain proper distance throughout your visit

      Take advantage of our virtual consultations or follow up appointments if it makes you feel more comfortable

Please bear with us as we work to return to our new “normal” and feel free to call or email with any questions. We look forward to seeing you again soon!

Sincerely,

Dr. Kearney and staff

858.677.9352

www.kearneymd.com