Capsule formation or scar tissue naturally occurs around breast implants following breast augmentation cosmetic surgery. In some cases, the capsule may tend to thicken, which will squeeze the implants. The implant may lose shape, become misaligned, move from its position, or get damaged in this condition. In such a situation, the surgeon may recommend capsulectomy or implant capsule removal surgery.
The capsule may be removed partially or entirely, and the breast implant may be reinserted into the original breast pocket, or replaced with a new implant. Sometimes, during implant replacement, the surgeon may have to create a new breast pocket to place a different type or size of implant. Board certified plastic surgeon Dr. Hisham Seify provides capsulectomy procedure to patients in Newport Beach, Orange County, CA, and surrounding locations.
Women who develop capsular contracture following primary breast augmentation will require capsulectomy. Capsular contracture may occur at any stage after the implant procedure, and the precise causes of this occurrence continue to be a matter of research.
When the capsule formation becomes so thick or hard that the patient can actually feel the scar tissue wall, or experience pain or hardness, or the shape or position of the implant is visible distorted, it may be necessary to undergo a capsulectomy plastic surgery.
Total or Partial Capsulectomy
Breast capsulectomy is usually performed as an open surgery. This means that the surgeon will cut through the scar tissue opening up to the breast capsule to remove or replace the implant. Closed procedure in capsulectomy is not preferred because it causes more pain and has the risk of causing implant rupture.
The cosmetic surgeon may choose between total capsulectomy and sub-total capsulectomy, depending on the patient’s condition. In case of total capsulectomy, the entire capsule is removed and the implant is replaced with a new one. The sub-total procedure, on the other hand, involves only partial removal of the capsule. This can be done only if the implant has not broken or moved away from its original position.
In any case, even in sub-total capsulectomy, the implant is usually replaced with a new one. The goal of the surgeon is to remove the problematic capsule and place a new implant so that the procedure becomes more sustainable than the previous one. Dr. Seify receives patients from Newport Beach, Orange County, CA, and nearby areas for capsulectomy.
Various options for incision placement and positioning of the implant are available to the surgeon, and the choice will depend on the condition of the patient and her specific breast anatomy. The surgeon will break open the scar tissue to release tension, and then remove the capsule. Thereafter, an incision will be placed either around the border of areola, in the armpit or beneath the breast crease.
The new implant will be inserted through the incision and placed into the desired position. The incisions will then be closed with fine sutures. A light dressing will be placed to cover the incisions against infection. The procedure is usually more complex than primary breast augmentation.