Capsular contraction advice

I had breast implants in 2010. Recently I've developed very mild capsular contraction, slightly more fullness in the breast with the contraction, and it feels slightly firmer. I've seen a consultant in the breast unit and had an ultrasound he said it was ok to leave for now. How long can I leave it for? Am I better to have implants replaced before capsular contraction gets worse or do I wait? How long before I will need implants replacing. Many thanks

Doctor Answers 2

Concerned about Capsular Contracture

One of the most common problems is breast capsular #contracture or the development of thickening, and contracture of the capsule that exists around the breast implants. Severe capsule contracture probably occurs in less than 15% of augmentation patients. Every woman has a breast capsule around their implant and this is a normal phenomenon. The capsule itself could be as thin as Saran Wrap but may also become calcified and thickened. As it thickens and shrinks, the patient may develop a feeling a firmness of the breasts and in its worst situation, the breast may become painful and abnormal in appearance, achieving a very round, hard, and uneven appearance. There may be distortion and possible breakage and leakage of an older implant, but may also include a newer #implant. Nicotine users, such as smokers, have up to a 30x increased risk of #capsular contracture.Saline implants may deflate spontaneously. When the patient has significant #symptoms, complete or partial leakage of their saline implant, or concerns regarding silicone leakage, it is recommended that the implant is removed and exchanged. Frequently, this is performed on both sides depending upon the age of the implant. Capsulotomy or opening of the capsule may be required or frequently capsulectomy, which is removal of the scarred capsule, is r#ecommended to ensure adequate pocket dimensions.New implants may then be placed in the same existing position or may undergo a change of #placement frequently from submammary to subpectoral position and, on occasion, the other way around.

Orange County Plastic Surgeon
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Capsular contraction advice

I'm sorry to hear about the problem you are experiencing. Assuming no breast implant leakage ( best diagnosed on MRI exam), it does not sound like you need surgical intervention at this point. Sometimes, use of anti-inflammatories (Singular) and massage maneuvers may help prevent progression of the capsular contracture.
It is  not possible to predict whether the capsular contracture will  It'sremained stable (mild) or if it will progressively worsen; unfortunately, this may be one of those questions that only "time will tell". 

Generally speaking, there is no time limit as to when or if you need to exchange your breast implants. I have heard from patients that they have heard that breast implants need to be changed every 10 years. The only reason you need to exchange your breast implants is if you are having a problem with them or if you would like to change the size. Some of the potential complications that may arise would be deflation, capsular contracture, bottoming out, or just size change. If you are happy with the size of your breast implants and are having no problems, you do not need to do anything.
 Best wishes.

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.