Revision Breast Surgery

OVERVIEW OF REVISION BREAST SURGERY:

Revision breast surgery is typically performed to address complications or long term changes from previous breast surgery. These can include asymmetry, capsular contracture, and skin stretch.

 

GOALS:

The goals of revision breast surgery include:

 

• Restoring a natural, youthful appearance

• Achieve or improve symmetry of the breasts

• Obtain a well hidden, minimally noticeable scar

• Obtain a long lasting result

• Avoid complications

 

WHO IS A GOOD CANDIDATE FOR REVISION BREAST SURGERY:

Women frequently seek this operation after their breasts change over the years following their original breast surgery.

 

INCISIONS:

For revision breast surgery, I try to use the same incision as the original surgery, in order to minimize scars on the breast. With revision surgery, I frequently need to do a breast lift as well, and therefore a scar around the areola is used.

 

DESCRIPTION OF SURGERY:

Under general anesthetic, an incision is made either at the inframammary fold, or around the areola. I then go underneath the breast tissue until I encounter the original breast implant. I then remove the implant along with the capsule of fibrous tissue that normally surrounds the implant. The new implant is then placed either above or below the muscle. Occasionally, I place the new implant in a different plane (above or below the muscle) than the original one in order to improve the appearance or decrease the risk of contracture. At this point, I will perform a lift if needed. The results are then evaluated. Once I am happy with the appearance of the breasts, the incisions are closed, and the dressings applied.

 

RECOVERY:

You will spend a couple of hours in the recovery room at the surgery center before you go home. You will need someone to pick you up from the center, and stay with you in your home overnight. You may feel up to going for a walk later that evening or the following day. Over the next week to two weeks, you will feel better and better and slowly resume your usual activities. However, it could be a full 6 weeks before you feel completely recovered from your surgery.

 

POTENTIAL SHORTCOMINGS:

Revision surgery is more technically difficult than primary surgery due to scarring, capsule formation and tissue changes, and the results are less consistent. This surgery does not halt the aging process of the breasts, and in fact can accelerate it. Over time, the weight of the implant can cause the skin of the breast to stretch, leading to the need / desire to undergo a breast lift. Larger implants accelerate these changes.

 

RISKS:

As with any surgery, there is a possibility of experiencing a complication. These include bleeding after the surgery (hematoma), decreased sensation in the breast or nipple, infection, asymmetry of the breasts, implant malposition, capsular contracture, re-operation and others. It is important to discuss these in detail prior to undergoing this surgery.