Risks of Breast Augmentation Surgery
Before our cosmetic surgery patients undergo the procedure, Dr. Bonness explains all the risks of breast augmentation. Every patient is fully informed of possible side effects of the procedure. Unfortunately, there are occasions when complications occur and must be corrected as soon as possible.
Although it is a rare risk, capsular contracture is the most commonly developed problem. This happens when there is too much scar tissue forming around the implant and it becomes hard and painful. The scar tissue that forms around the implant is called the capsule. Scar tissue formation is a normal response to a foreign body. The same scar tissue forms around pacemakers and hip replacements. Normally, the scar tissue remains thin and soft, but when the scar tissue around the implant tightens down, thickens and squeezes on the implant it is called capsular contracture.
This tightening can be severe, causing significant firmness to the breast, pain and distortion with implant displacement. Fortunately, capsular contraction is very rare because today most implants are placed under the muscle.
Capsular contracture can happen any time after surgery, but it most commonly occurs within the first 3 years. It can happen in one breast and not the other. In some cases, we know the cause (infection, bleeding, and radiation), but in most cases, there is no obvious reason.
The best ways to prevent capsular contracture are to have the implant placed under the muscle, massage the area after surgery, and stop smoking.
Textured implants can also help prevent capsular contracture, but they are not necessary when the implants are placed under the muscle.