Cartilage Too Weak to Support Implants?

My PS said he wasn't sure about me getting breast implants because I had a pectus excavatum corrective surgery 5 years ago and im still young so my cartilage wasn't as hard or something? He was concerned that the weight of the implants would cause my "sunken chest" to cave inward more and might cause breathing and/or heart problems? I had to have the pectus repaired because it was pushing my heart over to the side

Doctor Answers 6

Breast Implants and Pectus Excavatum

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I have operated on patients with Pectus Excavatum with good results. The reconstructed sternal complex in your case should be quite stable by now. Make sure that the plastic surgeon you choose, carefully examines your anatomy, especially the chest wall muscles, to make sure that you get a good result. Also, he should consult with your chest surgeon that did your repair.

Newport Beach Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 62 reviews


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It would be really helpful to see photos  to determine  if you are a good candidate for breast augmentation.    Which procedure  is best for you would depend on how your pectus was corrected.  It is true that implants might press against the cartilage of your chest and deform the cartilage especially if you were to go with large implants.  A consult with a board certified plastic surgeon would be the place to start.  Good luck!

Ronald J. Edelson, MD
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Breast implants after pectus excavatum repair

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I agree your repair should be stable at this point. I would consult your cardiothoracic surgeon first. Then find a plastic surgeon who is willing to talk to your chest surgeon to see if this procedure would cause you any undue risk

Marialyn Sardo, MD
La Jolla Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 6 reviews

Post Pectus excavatum repair too weak for implants?

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You should ask your pectus repair surgeon. The weight of 500 cc implants is 1.1 lbs. each. I would think that if it's been more than a year since your pectus repair and there was nornal healing you should have no problem. I have placed implants as heavy as 8 lbs. each which is quite heavy but the semi-petite patients had no problem.

Dr. Foster

Lawrence Foster, MD (retired)
Sacramento Plastic Surgeon

Pectus and implants

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At five years after pectus repair, unless your thoracic surgeon thinks otherwise, I do not see why you can not have breast implants.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Cartilage Too Weak to Support Implants?

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Your pectus repair should be pretty solidly healed after five years. Unless your breast and chest skin is tight and you are thinking about large implants, there should not be undo pressure on your chest wall.

You would do well to discuss this with your chest surgeon, and if you get an OK, find another plastic surgeon for another opinion.

Thanks for your question and best wishes.

Jourdan Gottlieb, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon

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.