How Much Can TE's Be Filled Beyond Their CC Amount?

I had a skin sparing BM . My TE's are filled to 550cc's. I want full C's. I am 5' 6, 120 lbs. My chest is 32 although I wear a 36" bra. The dr said I need 650+100 for overfill. I’ve had very bad pain all along, the dr seems to roll his eyes at that. My TE’s are allergan 133fx-12-t 450cc's. Can these be filled to 750cc's? How many cc's do I need. I was told to be a full "c" my next surgery would be in Nov. now Feb. of next year! No complications or treatments other than bad pain. Please help.

Doctor Answers 5

Tissue expanders can be significantly overfilled

Hi there-

I wouldn't worry about overfilling your expanders, as they have a large capacity for tolerance of this, and in fact it is often necessary in order to achieve adequate skin recruitment.

I would talk to your surgeon again about your pain...

Orlando Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 159 reviews

Overfilling tissue expanders

Sorry to hear that you are having a difficult time with your expansion process.  Tissue expanders can be overfilled for a considerable amount -- they just will feel and look like rocks.  Overfilling a tissue expander is not an issue because they are only temporary devices.  Usually, I tell my patients that we will expand until they are slightly larger than the size they would like to be.  

As for the discomfort, If you can tolerate it, then hang in there.  Sometimes, the expansion has to be limited by what you are able to tolerate and not the desired breast size.  I would recommend that you discuss this discomfort with your surgeon.

Anureet K. Bajaj, MD
Oklahoma City Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

Breast Tissue Expander Fill Volumes

Tissue expanders can easily be filled to more than twice their fill volume without rupture. They will feel very hard but the implant replacements will have a much more normal feel. If you are currently at 550cc with 650cc expanders, there is no problem pushing the fill volume to 750ccs or beyond.

Barry L. Eppley, MD, DMD
Indianapolis Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 72 reviews

Tissue expanders and over fill

I will often over fill tissue expanders for breast recontruction.  I always remind my patients to let me know at what inflation volume they are happy, so that I can match the final implant. 

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

Overexpanding tissue expanders before breast implants

The tissue expander is a temporary device, and we don't worry about overfill, even to fairly large volumes. The expanders become very stiff and firm, and progessively harder to push the saline, and will feel very awkward, though they are not 'your breast' and the permanent implants will be a vast difference.

Best of luck,

Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 43 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.