How soon can I return to upper body exercises after a breast augmentation revision (capsulorraphy+mesh)?

Revision surgery was about two weeks ago, 04/22/16. Went from mentor saline 350cc under muscle to Natrelle Inspira SRF 450cc. Usual exercise includes equipment Pilates (cadillac apparatus, reformer, etc), and light weight lifting. Dr. said to listen to my body and that I should be fine but I do not want to damage the internal sutures/mesh. Whats the appropriate time to wait for adequate healing?

Doctor Answers 8

I think your surgeon is avoidiing the right answer--you might listen to your body need another surgery.

Healing is not enhanced by excessive activity, muscle overuse, or cardio. Healing takes time, even when a person is in the best of health. Collagen synthesis is essential to success of capsulorrhaphy and mesh placement, and this involves time as well. 6 weeks.

This does not mean you need to be immobile for 6 weeks, but it does mean that an avid exerciser such as you needs to really take it easy or you will cause failure of healing. If you tear sutures, all the mesh in the world will not keep things where they are supposed to be. Freshly operated tissues are the same way--friable and much more likely to tear or rupture.

So, take it easy. I tell my patients: nothing to raise heart rate or blood pressure for 2 weeks, then light toning and cardio only for another 2 weeks, then begin light lifting and exercise until week 4, after which ramping up activity and intensity should be gradual, not "Go for it!" Best wishes for a perfect recovery and result! Dr. Tholen


Minneapolis Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 239 reviews

Follow surgeon's advice for exercise after breast revision with mesh

Your surgeon knows best for your specific case. I would usually recommend 6 weeks before upper body work after revision breast implant surgery with mesh in order to make sure it is healed enough.

Richard Baxter, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 46 reviews

Exercising

Most women can resume full activities by 6 weeks. You want to avoid tearing anything apart or bleeding. Do follow your surgeon's post operative instructions.

Connie Hiers, MD
San Antonio Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

Exercise after a breast capsuloraphy mesh?

In this instance the repair should heal in very well to maintain  the implant position, and the mesh also will need to settle in very well to avoid displacement or seroma formation. Generally six weeks should do, however you might ask your surgeon again as he is most familiar with the repair.

Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 40 reviews

Exercise after breast revision

It is best to follow your surgeon's advice. In general, I prefer patients to wait about 3-4 weeks to start light aerobics and 4-6 weeks to start vigorous exercise in  most cases.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

Upper body exercises after breast revision

In this situation, where a mesh is placed and sewn into an actively moving muscle, I would tell my patients to avoid a constant tension on that muscle so as to not tear or loosen the repair. By six weeks postoperatively, there should be sufficient scar tissue that it should be safe to return to active exercising of the upper body. Ask your plastic surgeon to be more specific about which muscle exercises her or she may want you to avoid. Congratulations on your revision and hopeful that you have an uneventful recovery.

Marc J. Salzman, MD, FACS
Louisville Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 43 reviews

How soon can I return to upper body exercises after a breast augmentation revision

Thank you for your question. With a revision and internal sutures and mesh I would avoid weight lifting push ups and very aggressive upper body exercise for 6 week. The risk of being to active is tearing a suture or causing a seroma.

Return to exercise after capsulorraphy?

Congratulations on having undergone the revisionary breast surgery.  Ultimately, only your plastic surgeon should advise you when it comes to returning to specific exercises.  If I were you, I would ask for more specific recommendations as opposed to "listen to your body".  With these types of cases, I want my patients to AVOID hearing their bodies say "ouch"...

  In my opinion, returning to certain activities too soon may increase the risk of recurrence of breast implant displacement/malposition.  The type of exercise/activity patients should avoid will depend on exactly what type of capsulorraphy was performed. Therefore, In my practice, I ask patients to avoid upper body weightlifting, stretching, and strenuous activity in general respectively for at least 4 to 6 weeks after the surgery. Sometimes, depending on the type of capsulorraphy performed, this time of rest is even longer.  For example, for symmastia correction  capsulorraphy, I ask patients not to abduct their arms for several months after the procedure.  The use of specific supportive garments may also be helpful.

One of the problems associated with this type of revisionary breast surgery: often, patients do not experience much discomfort with this type of surgery.  This may lead them to return to activities too soon unless they are aware of the potential problems that may occur.

I hope this helps. Best wishes for outcome that you will be pleased with long-term.

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.