Hard implants when lying flat? (Photo)

I'm only 3 months PO, but I notice my implants are really (pretty) hard/firm when lying on my back. They are quite soft, if not softest, when lying on my side. And just 'ok' soft when standing up, with no jiggling or hardly any bounce when I walk or jump. To my Fellow RSers, is this normal for anyone? Is this what I should expect for ever? Or has softness improved over time, no matter what position u are in???

Doctor Answers 8

3 months post

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This may depend on your anatomy and the type of implants that you have but I let my patients know that implants can continue to settle and soften up to 6 months post op. There may be more tension/tightness in the skin when you are laying down. I suggest that you revaluate at 6 months post.

All the best

Hard implants when you lay down flat may or may not be a normal finding

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The answer to this depends upon many factors including the exact type of implants you have, how they are placed with respect to the pectorals muscle, the length of time it has been since surgery and the quality of your tissues, and the exact position that you are in, including the position of your arms.  At 3 months postop it is still fairly early, and the tissues may still be in the process of relaxing and softening, especially if you started out relatively small breasted with tight tissues.  Furthermore, if the implants are in a sub muscular position or a dual plane location, any position that puts tension on your pectoralis muscles will also place tension on your capsules and thus make your breasts a bit firmer in that position.  This will be especially true in positions with your arms outstretched as you are showing in this picture.  This is not necessarily an abnormal thing.  In addition, if you have highly cohesive ("gummy bear") implants or overfilled saline implants, that will make the breasts firmer than others with different types of implants.  The one encouraging thing that you mention is that they aren't firm in every position, and they seem to be "soft" in some positions.  Tightness of capsules isn't an "all or none" thing; it is on a spectrum, and some may be tighter than others, and that doesn't necessarily mean that there is clinical capsule contracture.  As this are issues that can only really be sorted out with a personal examination, the best thing to do is to contact your surgeon and express your concerns so that he or she can evaluate you properly in that light and advise you accordingly.  If in fact it does appear that you are developing early capsule tightness, there are some medications and other interventions that can be employed that may lessen the chance of a full-blown capsule contracture, and your surgeon will be aware of what those are and whether or not you should use those.  So, there is value in getting a proper evaluation now, even if it is ultimately just for reassurance and to be told that nothing is wrong at this point.  That's better than guessing or ignoring a potential problem.  Good luck.

Joseph L. Grzeskiewicz, MD
San Diego Plastic Surgeon

Hard implants

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Thanks for your question.

It depends on a lot of factors. If you don't have any child, if you are young, the breast envelope is stiff and the postop breasts could be firm after 3 months, normally.
But if you have childs, if you are over 40 years old, and if you had sagging breasts, the breast envelope is loose and the postop breasts must be very soft and loose.
The implant type, your breast envelope condition, your age, the thickness of your capsule around the implants, everything is the points about the 'softness'. So you had better talk with your surgeon about it.

Good luck and have a wonderful day.

Joo Hyuk Lee, MD
South Korea Plastic Surgeon

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After 3 months your implants are fairly unlikely to change  much.  They will feel different in different positions - this is not abnormal.  On your back the implants are sitting up against your ribs & thus won't be as mobile.  You'll get used to the different feelings as time goes on.  You appear to have a great result.  All the best

Kim Taylor, FRACS
Melbourne Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 44 reviews

Breast firmness

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Breast firmness can change even after 3 months following your surgery. If you have textured or shaped implants the firmness may be permanent. See your surgeon for an examination but most likely there is nothing to do at this point. If you have smooth round silicone then you should see increased softness with time. The photo doesn't help much with the bathing suit as it hides how the breast sits with you lying down. Best of luck

Josh Olson MD

Hard breast implants when lying flat?

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If your implants are under the muscle it would possibly explain them being firmer when lying down if the pectoralis muscle is on more pull. Try crossing your arms when lying down and see if that makes them softer.

See your surgeon for an exam and discuss breast implant displacement exercises which can help soften implants.

Implant firmness

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Hello, perhaps when you are laying flat your pectoralis muscle and breast tissue is stretched tighter over your implants.  Over time this might soften a little.

Breast Implant Softness

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Thank you for your question and picture.  You are still a bit early after surgery and will continue to see more softness occur over the coming months.  

Cheers and best wishes!
Steven Camp MD

Steven M. Camp, MD
Fort Worth Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 120 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.