Making a Change

Breast Implant Revision Surgery Breast augmentation is a highly successful and satisfying procedure for our Dallas patients. But, like any surgery, it isn’t a perfect science, and there are times when a patient wants to make a change with her implants. It could be that the procedure was performed by another surgeon and the results weren’t as hoped. In others cases, the patient decides she wishes she would have opted for larger implants. And there can be other reasons a patient may come to Dr. Amirlak for breast revision surgery.

Here are some of the reasons Dr. Amirlak is asked to perform revision surgery, and the approach taken for each.

Capsular contracture

Besides possible rupturing of the implant, this is the main side effect of breast augmentation. When an implant is placed into the body, there is a reaction, as you would assume. The body builds scar tissue to surround the implant, and this is a normal thing. This scar tissue is called the “capsule.” In some cases, however, the scar tissue continues to grow. This can cause the implant to shift or the breast to feel very firm, or there may be pain from the constricting scar tissue. This is called capsular contracture. When this occurs, surgery is usually required. If the capsule is very calcified, Dr. Amirlak will remove it along with the implant. If that hasn’t happened, he may leave the capsule. If there is a rupture of a silicone implant, the capsule may contain silicone shell fragments, silicone gel, and inflammatory cells that all need to be removed prior to placing new implants.

Changing the implant size

Sometimes a woman decides she would like a different size implant. This isn’t a decision that should be made soon after surgery, however. Generally, Dr. Amirlak advises patients to wait one full year before deciding to make a change. This will allow the implants to fully settle into their final position, and any residual swelling will have passed by then. If the patient still wants to change her implant size, Dr. Amirlak will enter through the original incision. If a larger implant is desired, he will increase the size of the pocket, the space in the breast to hold the implant. If the patient seeks smaller implants, the size of the pocket is reduced with sutures to fit the smaller implants. In cases of smaller implants, a breast lift may be done in conjunction with the implant revision to remove any sagging tissue and possibly relocate the nipples.

Implant position

Sometimes a less experienced surgeon will place the implant pockets either too far away or too close together and the patient is not happy with the placement. In these cases, the scar tissue from the capsule can be used to reconstruct new pockets in better positions.

Implant rippling

Implant rippling is usually a result of saline implants that have been placed atop the chest muscle. There isn’t enough skin and tissue to cover the implant, and rippling occurs. Sometimes the edge of the implant may even be able to be felt. To correct this problem, Dr Amirlak enters through the original incisions and replaces the implants with better muscle coverage. This may involve switching implant types and/or placing them in new breast pockets. Saline gel implants have less occurrence of rippling.

Implant removal

When a patient decides she no longer wants to have her implants, they are removed through the same incisions. Dr. Amirlak will also remove the capsule if it is calcified and thick. Many times, he then recommends a breast lift at the same time to remove excess sagging skin and breast tissue.

There are a couple things to consider before going forward with breast augmentation surgery. First, your expectations need to be realistic. Having larger breasts won’t take away all the problems in your life. It will simply change your figure, and probably your body image, all for the better. Still, it’s not a panacea.

Second, this is major surgery. It’s not something to trust to a low-ball estimate or an inexperienced practitioner. Dr. Amirlak is a board-certified plastic surgeon with extensive experience. Do your research beforehand and the odds are you’ll be happy with your results.

If you have questions about possibly revision surgery, or anything to do with implants and augmentation, don’t hesitate to call Dr. Amirlak at (214) 974-4948 to set up a consultation.

Posted in: Breast Implant Revision Surgery

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