Have your breast implants developed a hard look or feel? You may have a capsular contracture. Patients in Nashville and Franklin, TN, trust board-certified plastic surgeon Chad Robbins, MD, FACS, for this delicate procedure. Contact his office today to schedule your personalized consultation.
What Is Capsular Contracture?
When an implant is inserted into the breast, the body forms a protective layer of tissue around it called a capsule. In some women, that capsule may begin to shrink and constrict the implant, causing the breast to feel firm and possibly distorted. The reason why this happens to some women and not others is not entirely known, but it may result in asymmetrical breasts and even discomfort. An experienced, board-certified plastic surgeon, such as Dr. Chad Robbins can conduct a physical examination to determine if you have capsular contracture and discuss the treatment options.
How Do I Know If I Have Capsular Contracture?
The severity of capsular contracture is measured on a scale of I to IV. A common symptom of capsular contracture is harder breasts than usual, distortion of the original shape of your implants, and pain or discomfort in your breasts.
During your consultation, Dr. Robbins will examine your breasts to determine if your capsular tissue is contracting, and grade it based on this scale:
- Grade I: The breast looks soft and normal
- Grade II: The breast is beginning to feel slightly harder than usual
- Grade III: The breast is firm and is beginning to loose its shape and appear distorted.
- Grade IV: The tissue capsule is hard and compressing the implant. You may feel soreness or discomfort.
Can I Prevent Capsular Contracture?
The exact cause of the tightening of the capsular tissue is unknown, but preventative measures can be taken to possibly lower your risk of developing it.
- Using textured implants. When placed above the muscle, these implants can help discourage the tissue from contracting.
- The No Touch Technique. Getting a breast augmentation (LINK) by a doctor who uses this procedure may help reduce the possibility of surface bacteria introducing itself into your body. It is believed that this may help reduce the risk of capsular contracture.
- Subpectoral placement. Having your breast implants placed underneath the muscle can reduce the likelihood of capsular contracture to 8 – 12%, whereas other placement techniques have a 12 – 18% chance.
- Closed Filling System. This method is only available for saline implants. By filling the implants using sterile tubing, you eliminate the possibility of contamination by foreign bacteria, which can possibly help prevent capsular constriction.
- Gently massage the breasts. This method has neither been proven nor disproven and may be helpful depending on your unique situation.
What Treatment Methods Are Available for Capsular Contracture?
There are few different ways that capsular contraction can be treated. The most effective method is a capsulectomy, which is a procedure to remove the entire capsule. This technique also helps to reduce the possibility of it reforming once the implant is replaced. A capsulotomy can also be performed, which will break up the tissue without removing the implant altogether. Non-surgical techniques are also available. Additionally, high doses of vitamin E may be beneficial in softening scar tissue, which can help your breasts stay supple and soft. If you are exhibiting any symptoms of capsular contracture or are concerned you may have capsular contracture; we encourage you to contact the office of Dr. Robbins to schedule an examination.
What Does Capsular Contracture Treatment Cost in Nashville?
The cost of capsular contracture treatment will vary greatly depending on the severity of your condition and your unique body make-up. To ensure the procedure is affordable and available to those who may need it, financing is offered via CareCredit® and Prosper Healthcare Lending.
Capsular contracture is a condition where the tissue capsule around your breast implant becomes contracted and may result in deformity or discomfort. Dr. Chad Robbins, MD, FACS, is a board-certified surgeon who was trained at the Mayo Clinic and is experienced in breast augmentation and revisions, including capsular contracture treatments. Residents of Nashville and Franklin may contact our office to schedule an appointment.