Even with the technical advancements of breast enhancement procedures, complications can occur after surgery that contribute to situations that may require further care and, in some cases, for the implant to be removed.
Time is a major factor that contributes to the necessity to replace breast implants. Breast implants are not lifetime devices; the longer you have them the more likely you will need to get it replaced. In fact, the FDA estimates that almost 20% of breast implants will need to get replaced after about 8 – 10 years.
Breast Implants that have gone awry can cause minor problems like slight discomfort and some hardness as well as major problems such as unbearable pain and disfigured breasts. Knowing the initial signs of breast implant problems is the first step in fixing the issue before it potentially gets worse.
Dr. Farbod Esmailian is a highly experienced, double board-certified plastic surgeon who specializes in complicated breast enhancement and other cosmetic enhancement procedures. His experience is not only with women who are receiving their first breast augmentation surgery, but also with the replacement or removal of breast implants gone wrong.
Whether the breast implant problems occurred as the result of a botched initial surgery, a ruptured breast implant, a non-optimum reaction to the breast implants, or other, Dr. Esmailian can help resolve your issue. A large portion of his patients are women who were referred to him after their surgery didn’t go as planned and wanted to go to a specialist who could resolve the issue once and for all.
In this article, we will go over some of the various breast implant problems that you may run into, as well as a rundown on how Dr. Esmailian can resolve the issue.
CAPSULAR CONTRACTURE, HARD BREAST IMPLANTS
If your implant has become hard, or has moved from its original position, then you may be suffering from what’s known as capsular contracture. Hardened breast implants are one of the more common problems with breast implants, and the earlier you seek treatment for this issue, the better. In fact, without treatment, capsular contracture will only get worse.
Capsular contracture is actually caused by the body reacting to the foreign substance of the implant. It forms scar tissue around the implant, squeezing it. Once this occurs, the implant no longer has leeway to move around naturally, and instead it is fixed into place by the scar tissue. This is not only painful for the patient, it also causes the breasts to look very unnatural or disfigured.
There are 4 stages to capsular contracture:
- Grade I: The breast appears normal and is soft, and the implant is flexible.
- Grade II: The breast, though normal in appearance, is slightly hard to the touch.
- Grade: III: The breast is no longer normal in appearance. It has become a rounded shape, has shifted upwards, or is displaying some other form of distortion caused by the contracture. Also the breast is hard to the touch.
- Grade IV: Same symptoms as Grade III but with increased hardening.
There are many theories as to why one may be going through the complications of hard breast implants, but researchers are mostly puzzled as to why it can occur in one breast and not the other, or why it happens in one woman but not another.
As mentioned above, capsular contracture will only get worse without treatment, and your best option is to nip it in the bud at the earliest signs of complications. Dr. Esmailian is of the most qualified and experienced surgeons in the field of capsular contracture treatment in Orange County. Many come to him to seek his expertise in the field of diagnosis and treatment of this uncomfortable and unsightly problem.
If you are experiencing any of the symptoms of capsular contracture or hard breasts, you should schedule an appointment with Dr. Esmailian, a double board-certified plastic surgeon who is considered one of the best at capsular contracture treatment in Orange County.
RUPTURED BREAST IMPLANTS
Implants can become ruptured and leak. Depending on whether you have a silicone or saline implant, this rupture may be immediately obvious and require attention, or it may occur over time and be more difficult to detect.
If you do have a ruptured implant you may experience hard spots near your implant, soreness, swelling, burning or tingling. You may also notice a decrease in size, or a change of shape. A lot of times there are no symptoms at all, and the ruptured implant is only discovered at a routine check-up.
In the case of saline implant ruptures, one may notice that their breasts have “deflated” or reduced in size. Saline ruptures are usually very rapid, though slow leaks can occur as well. In the case of a saline implant rupture and leak, the body will absorb the liquid. It’s usually harmless, unless the implant had developed fungus or bacteria, which could cause an infection. If you have saline implants and notice your breasts seem deflated or reduced in size, you should check with the doctor immediately to see if you may need antibiotics.
In the case of a silicone implant rupture, the leak might be slow, taking months for you to notice. Routine check-ups are recommended in order to catch a rupture before it leaks into the body and causes further problems. An MRI or an ultrasound are methods of inspecting the breasts and checking for ruptures.
There are two types of silicone implant ruptures. The first is that the rupture is contained within the capsule, the casing of scar tissue that grows around the implant after it’s surgically installed. In this case no silicone has leaked into the body. The other type of rupture is potentially more dangerous, and that is when the leakage seeps past the capsule and into the body. The silicone can leak into your lymph nodes and lungs, where it is difficult or even impossible to remove. Patients should know that this is quite rare.
If you do have ruptured breast implants, it is best to remove them right away. Dr. Esmailian is a skilled double board-certified plastic surgeon who is an expert at the removal of breast implants. Often surgeons can be well versed in breast augmentation, but may not be as gifted in breast implant removal or replacement surgeries. For this reason, choosing your breast implant removal surgeon is much more important.
Many patients end up not choosing their original doctor who performed the procedure in the first place, though they may have been very happy with their post-op figure. Surgeons skilled in the breast enhancement procedures may even refer their patients to an expert in the breast removal and or replacement surgeries to ensure it is done correctly.
BREASTS THAT ARE TOO CLOSE TOGETHER OR TOO FAR APART
After breast augmentation surgery you may find that your breasts are now too close together or too far apart. Through time, they may even start to move too close together or too far apart. These are two fairly common breast implant problems.
The cause of either of these situations could be that the breast enhancement surgeon didn’t place the implant in the correct location. Sometimes a surgeon may put the implant in a place that immediately pulls the breast in the wrong direction, thereby causing either of these problems. Sometimes gravity slowly pulls the breast implant one way or another, and coupled with a wrongly placed implant, it could result in breasts that now are too close or too far apart.
After breast implant surgery, your body will heal by forming a capsule around the implant. It is part of your body’s way of recovering after surgery. This was firmly considered when your surgeon performed your breast implant procedure, and he or she took this into account by leaving some space for this capsule to grow. As every body is slightly different, and one may have a different reaction to an implant from another, one may sometimes heal in a manner that doesn’t create this capsule around the implant. In this case, your implant may move and push your breasts away or towards each other, resulting in a figure that is different from your ideal.
In either of these cases, your only solution is another procedure to reposition the implant to the correct location. When done correctly, your breasts will rest in the proper position that is most flattering for your figure.
When choosing a new surgeon to repair your breast implants gone wrong, it’s best to trust one who is experienced in the always-difficult procedures of removal and replacement. Dr. Esmailian is proud to be a double board-certified surgeon who has expertise in the art of these reconstructive surgeries.
If you feel like you might be experiencing any of the above common breast implant problems, you need to call Dr. Farbod Esmailian today to schedule a private consultation. During this consultation, Dr. Esmailain will expertly determine the source of your problem and what your best treatment options are.
Stop living with unnecessary discomfort, imperfect breast implants or any other problems connected with your breast augmentation surgeries. Get the treatment and care that you need.