I had a anchor lift with implant removal. What would cause this? (photo)

My surgery was September 13 th. My left breast has had major complications. What would cause this? How long could it take me to heal & will I ever look normal ?

Doctor Answers 6

Wound complications after explant and breast lift

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Thank you for your photo and question. I am sorry you're having problems. Based on your photos and history, it appears that you likely have an area of fat necrosis with loss of some of the nipple complex. Unfortunately, this needs to be allowed to fully heal before making an assessment as to what needs to be done to improve the appearance of your breast. Performing a breast lift after implant removal is a difficult operation, and the blood supply to the breast is not normal after having had the initial augmentation. I suspect that some areas of the breast tissue had compromised blood supply as a result of the breast lift. This resulted in some of the breast tissue dying. At this point, you need to continue local wound care until you were fully healed. After that, I would recommend you wait at least six months for the tissue to soften before making an assessment as to what is needed revise the breast. At times, removal of some of the compromised tissue may speed up your healing. Hopefully, you are seeing your plastic surgeon regularly for wound care. Best of luck and best regards.

Anchor lift at the time of explantation

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I usually avoid anchor lifts at the time of explantation due to potential blood supply issues with the nipple areolar complex.  I have done over 2500 Explantations in the last 25 years.

Susan Kolb, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 31 reviews

Wound complications

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I'm sorry you are having these issues from your surgery.  It appears you had a compromise of blood supply to the nipple areola complex resulting in some tissue loss.  The wound will heal slowly and should be followed by your surgeon.  Once it is fully healed options can be discussed to improve aesthetics.

Camille Cash, MD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 36 reviews

I had a anchor lift with implant removal. What would cause this?

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Thank you for your question. Based on the photos you submitted it appears that you have a wound dehiscence and loss of a portion of the nipple due to vascular compromise to the nipple-areola complex. I recommend that you make an appointment with your plastic surgeon to discuss convalescence, wound care and possible surgical revision.

Complication after anchor lift

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Hello. Sorry to see that you had complication following your anchor lift and implant removal. It is difficult to make a diagnosis by photographs alone but it appears that you had necrosis of portion of the nipple-areola complex on that breast. This can be caused by infection or a lack of blood supply to the area or both. The photograph does not show all good tissues yet so healing will take a while. Please be sure to follow-up with your surgeon for proper wound care to facilitate healing. Best of luck.

Hoang Bui, MD
Orange County Plastic Surgeon

Nipple necrosis

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You have partial necrosis (death) of the nipple areolar area, this happens because of lack of blood supply to the area.  In any lift of reduction the nipple is taken away from some of its blood supply and this is always a risk of the procedure, it is much more common in smokers and also with multiple previous breast surgeries or radiation. 

But, this will heal and as frustrating and traumatic as the healing process is it will look better than you think.  Hopefully your surgeon is seeing you frequently and helping you with wound care. Once healed there are options to reconstruct the nipple and areola.  Good luck, Jane

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.