When do I need to do something about capsular contracture if I have a flap and implants? (Photo)

I had bilateral reconstruction with a flap and an implant 3 years ago. One breast has started to look misshapen. There is a noticeable dent in it along the scar - In other places it bulges. Is this capsular contracture? if it is not causing me pain, do I need to do anything about it (only sore if I mash it). If I do nothing, are there any long term ramifications? I've had reconstrxn redone twice now - 1st time implant moved, second had to get a flap to support implant.

Doctor Answers 1

Possible capsular contracture after reconstruction

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If your breast shape is changing and it is getting more firm, then it is likely due to capsular contracture.  Rates of contracture are higher in reconstruction especially in the setting of prior radiation.

Some women do live with capsular contracture and do not seek out further surgery.  The ramifications of doing so are mostly related to the appearance and feel of the breast.  But, capsular contracture can worsen- meaning the breast can get harder and could get painful- although this may not happen.  But, it certainly could get to the point where you wish to have surgery to improve the situation.

If you've had trouble with implant based reconstruction, you may want to consider your options for breast reconstruction using only your own tissue.  I'll attach a link to a group in Austin who specialize in doing only those types of surgeries if your original surgeon does not.  It is always good to hear your options even if you end up opting out of surgery for now.

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.