Swelling or just asymmetry? (Photo)

I had my exchange surgery about 2 and a half weeks ago. 555 cc in each breast. The left was the cancerous side and never really looked quite right even with expanders. My PS says there's still some swelling and revisions can be done for symmetry, however the thought of more revisions is daunting to say the least. Does there appear to still be significant swelling? It's not that I expect perfection, I was just hoping for a one shot deal and no more surgeries. Thanks for your advice.

Doctor Answers 3

Breast Reconstruction Revision

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Breasts are swollen 2-3 weeks after surgery. I suggest that my patients use a sports bra for compression the first 6 weeks after surgery to help reduce the swelling. I would suggest waiting several months before deciding if an additional revision is necessary.

Early appearance after breast reconstruction

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Thanks for your question.  The breasts are clearly still swollen 2 1/2 weeks following the exchange procedure.  Sometimes the asymmetries that appear prominently early on in the post period, diminish over the course of 3-6 months.  It can be frustrating to watch and wait - like watching a tree grow!

The asymmetries that result after exchange surgery, noted at 3-6 months can usually be improved by revision surgery.  That might involve implant exchange, tightening of the the pocket, or fat grafting.  Consistent follow-up with your Plastic Surgeon is important, and you should share your concerns with healing at all of your visits,

Stephen U. Harris, MD
Long Island Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

Breast revision reconstruction

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You will no doubt have some persistent swelling if you are only 2-3 weeks out from surgery.  To be honest, it takes a good 3-6 months to really allow the swelling to improve and to let things settle out.  In your case, although the left breast appears smaller right now, I would suggest allowing things to settle out and then if you need a revision you can certainly do that, by either swapping out the smaller implant for a bigger one that matches or doing some fat grafting also.  

Cain R. Linville, MD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 39 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.