Removal of Capsule Contracture
Scar tissue forms around all implanted materials as a natural part of healing. Scar tissue around a breast implant is not troublesome unless it tightens. An abnormally tight scar is known as a capsular contracture. As the tightening scar tissue around the breast implants form, it may cause the breast to feel firm, unnatural, or even painful. When you see a breast that looks round and hard, it is probably due to capsular contracture. The most severe cases are sometimes called “coconut breasts.” Capsular contracture may occur at any time, but tend to occur in two waves referred to as early capsular contracture and late capsular contracture.
Capsular contracture may be treated by a surgeon in one of three ways. A capsulectomy is the surgical removal of the scar tissue around the implant and the placement of a new breast implant. A closed capsulotomy is the use of force to disrupt the surrounding scar tissue, in turn softening the breast. Lastly, an incontinuity or enbloc removal may be suggested if staph epi or silicone rupture are factors. This procedure removes the implant and scar tissue at the same time. Dr. Barrett provides information on all the procedures, but discussing it with your surgeon will help you make an informed decision.