Opinions on Massaging Silicone Under the Muscle (With Alloderm) Implants?

Dr. Says not necessary, but 4 weeks after surgery having pain (no other symptoms) . Contraindicated to do light massage? Still lots of numbness.

Doctor Answers 14

No benefit to massage

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It is our belief that there is no benefit to massage. The muscle actually restricts breast movement.

Phoenix Plastic Surgeon

Alloderm in breast implants

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Depending on why the alloderm was placed, I generally do not recommend early or aggressive massage.  Typically this is used in either breast reconstruction or revision augmentation for a specific reason ... to keep the implants in place the alloderm needs to integrate into your tissue.  Massage could dislodge the graft and result in the implants moving.  However, if you are having pain and firmness this could be an early sign of capsular contracture.  Visit with your surgeon and I'm sure he will address your issues accordingly.

Michael L. Spann, MD
Little Rock Plastic Surgeon

Massaging breasts

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Massaging the breasts after breast augmentation is really individualized by the surgeon. Some recommend it and some do not. Speak with your doctor.

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

Breast Implants - Opinions on Massaging Silicone Under the Muscle (With Alloderm) Implants?

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Hi Blythe,

Massaging may not be necessary - in any case!

There is actually very little hard data confirming the importance of massaging submuscular implants and, when you think about it, every time you move your arms, you're actually massaging them anyway. 

In your case, you have the added issue of Alloderm.  Products such as these (Acellular Dermal Matrix) have been reported to be associated with a higher incidence of seromas (fluid collections) and, for that reason alone, it's probably better if you DON'T massage them at this stage.  Either way, of course, you should be in touch with your plastic surgeon concerning all of this.

I hope that this helps, and good luck,

Dr. E

Massaging breasts after surgery

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This is definitely a question for your surgeon and I would not perform massage unless he OK's it.  The alloderm is sutured in place and it would be possible to disrupt sutures early after surgery and cause a problem with the result.  In addition, there is no evidence that massage does any good in the prevention of capsular contracture.  It has been out of favor for a number of years even though some surgeons still promote it.  That being said, it will not do any harm either, except possibly in your circumstance.

Jeffrey E. Kyllo, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

Massage after breast aumentation

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I do not believe massage has a role post augmentation, particularly when alloderm or other biologic membranes have been used.  These materials depend on stability and massage can disrupt the ingrowth of blood vessels needed for incorporation. 

Pain is common after breast surgery becasue there are a lot of small nerves that are stretched and sometimes damaged.  As the breast settles and as scar tissue matures small nerves are further irritated.  It can take as long as two years for things to fully settle.  Persistent pain or a particular sharp and lasting pain needs to be evaluated by your surgeon.  In general, most people experience gradual relief from discomfort over time.

Massaging breast implants

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It remains somewhat unclear from the literature whether or not post-operative massaging (displacement exercises) really works to decrease capsular contracture.  I typically instruct my breast augmentation patients to begin displacement exercises 1-2 weeks after surgery if smooth implants were used during the surgery.  Most patients will start slow because they may still be a bit sore.  As time goes on patients are usually able to be more aggressive.  I don't think displacement exercises decrease the likelihood of the development of capsular contracture.  However, I DO think that they can help with the long term positioning of the implant, and they speed up the recovery time by allowing patients to feel more comfortable with touching their breasts.  When it comes to revision surgery, massaging may not be encouraged for a number of reasons.  In these cases its best to get specific instructions from the plastic surgeon who performed the revision. 

Kelly Gallego, MD, FACS
Yuba City Plastic Surgeon

Massage with Revision Breast Surgery

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You should communicate with your surgeon because only he/she knows what was performed during surgery and if you should massage.  I have all of my primary breast augmentation patients massage after surgery but not necessarily so for my breast revision patients (it depends on what I have performed).  Revisionary surgery is tricky and so you should take the advice of your surgeon.

Massage after alloderm and implants

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Alloderm will eventually be incorporated into the adjacent tissues.  I would follow your surgeon recommendations since he knows your situation best.  You should be able to massage when he feels no likelyhood of damage.  Donald R Nunn MD  Atlanta Plastic Surgeon.

Donald Nunn, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 51 reviews

Opinions on Massaging Silicone Under the Muscle (With Alloderm) Implants?

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What I would recommend vs your chosen surgeon is the issue. You need to follow your chosen surgeons protocols not ours. 

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.