Is capsule removal necessary during Implant Explant within 6 months of original BA?

I got 300cc saline implants about 5 months ago and have decided to have them removed. There are no issues-i have just decided they are not for me. Is it necessary to have the capsule removed? Are there any benefits / concerns to having them removed vs leaving them in?

Doctor Answers 6

Implant removal

I'm sorry to hear that the implants did not work out for you.  As you have stated that you are having no issues or complications with the implants or capsules, the implants alone can be removed and the capsules can remain behind.  Removing the capsules is more involved, so unless there is a reason you want them out it is fine to leave them alone.

Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 33 reviews

Capsule and Implant removal

Thank you for your question. Be sure to see a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon who you can have access to for follow-up and can spend time with you before and after your surgery and answer all questions you may have. When the implants are removed, there is a capsule or layer of scar tissue around the implant. This capsule does not necessarily have to be removed, but should be if the capsule is irregular, painful, distorting the breast shape, is symptomatic or thickened. Removing very thin capsules may cause excessive bleeding and be associated with risks of injuring the chest wall muscles, ribs or other complications. After the implants are removed, any small capsule that is left will over time soften and dissolved/resorb and the breasts will settle into their post implant shape minus the skin stretch and original breast tissue and muscle shrinkage.

Benjamin J. Cousins MD Board Certified Plastic Surgeon

Benjamin J. Cousins, MD
Miami Beach Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 10 reviews

Capsule removal

Thanks for your query.  Soryy your are not happy with your implants.

I routinely leave the capsules in if they are not thickened.  I have not experienced any issues with this practice for the past 22 years.

Best of luck.

Dr. T

Douglas Taranow, DO, FACOS
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 56 reviews

Is capsulectomy needed at time of implant removal

Sorry the implants did not work out for you. There are 2 schools of thought on removal of the capsules. I recommend removal of the anterior wall of the capsule to make sure the pocket closes down. Many surgeons will just take the implant out, but sometimes the pocket does not stick down and needs drainage. There is no right or wrong on this question.

Rick Rosen, MD
Norwalk Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 22 reviews

Capsule removal?

If the capsule is soft, it does not have to be removed with the implants. Best of luck with your decision to move forward.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Is capsule removal necessary during Implant Explant?

Generally speaking (in my opinion), unless the breast implant capsules have thickened (and/or are otherwise symptomatic), are associated with the ruptured silicone gel breast implants, or if the patient has concerns about "medical conditions" related to the breast implants, capsulectomy is not universally necessary. For these patients, en block removal of breast implants is a good procedure.

***On the contrary, capsulectomy can expose patients to additional risks, such as bleeding, size loss, contour irregularities and other serious complications. In other words, any maneuver performed during surgery exposes patients to additional risk (morbidity). Again, attempting to remove very thin capsule densely adherent to the patient's rib cage may expose the patient to significant bleeding and/or entrance into the thoracic cavity.

Recently I have become more aware of the fact that there are plastic surgeons who, instead of using good judgment and individualized patient care, are causing fear and unnecessary anxiety among patients. These patients them feel that complete capsulectomy is always necessary and undergo unnecessary surgery associated with additional morbidity and unnecessary expenses.


 The good news:  breast implant removal surgery is a very well-tolerated procedure with minimal discomfort,  compared to first-time breast augmentation surgery. Patience is definitely indicated after removal of breast implants; it will take many months for the skin to “bounce back” and for you to see the final appearance of the breasts.

I hope this, and the attached link, helps. Best wishes.

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,488 reviews

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.