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Although today’s breast implants can last a long time, there are some occasions when it makes sense to have your implants replaced. Some women have them replaced with implants of a different size or when they have another cosmetic breast procedure, like a breast lift.

Other times, breast implants are removed and replaced when problems arise, like a rupture or formation of a hard ring of scar tissue — a condition called capsular contracture. Chelsea Sinder, MD, is skilled in breast implant removal surgery for implant issues, including ruptures and capsular contractures.

At Vida Bela Plastic Surgery, Dr. Snider offers a patient-centered approach that helps you get the results you’re looking for. Here’s what she wants you to know about breast implant ruptures, capsular contractures, and their treatment.

What to know about capsular contracture

Following implant placement, formation of some amount of scar tissue is normal. In fact, the capsule of scar tissue that forms after breast implant insertion can be beneficial, helping hold the implant in place. Sometimes, though, this capsule begins to harden and thicken (contract), squeezing the implant and causing puckering, displacement of the implant, or other cosmetic problems.

In advanced stages of capsular contracture, the squeezing becomes so intense, your breasts become sore and tender to the touch. In very severe instances, the squeezing from the capsule can rupture the implants, causing leakage.

Capsular contracture is not uncommon; roughly 1 in 6 women have some form of contracture — typically so mild, you never notice any symptoms at all. Researchers aren’t sure why symptomatic contracture happens in some women and not in others, but the good news is, it’s completely treatable.

What to know about implant rupture

Capsular contracture is one cause of implant rupture, but there are others. Some implants rupture as a result of traumatic injury, like a fall or car accident that injures your chest. In rare instances, an implant may be punctured during a biopsy procedure. Other causes are related to wear and tear on the implant as it ages.

Saline implant ruptures happen relatively rapidly, with implants draining over the course of a few days. Silicone implants contain a thick gel, and when these implants rupture, it can happen very slowly, making it harder to know for sure when a rupture initially happens.

Most implants cause the breast to appear misshapen as the implant contents leak out or shift. Silicone implant ruptures can cause pain and swelling that increase over several weeks. Rupture can also lead to capsular contracture.

Treating capsular contracture and implant rupture

If an implant ruptures, it must be removed surgically, then replaced with a new implant (if desired). Capsular contracture is also treated surgically using a procedure called a capsulectomy (removal of all or part of the scar capsule) or capsulotomy (removal of part of the capsule or release of binding scar tissue).

Dr. Snider tailors each surgery to your individual needs and anatomy for optimal results and fast relief of pain and other symptoms. If you have a problem with your breast implants, call Vida Bela Plastic Surgery in Plano or Frisco, Texas, or book an appointment online or over the phone with Dr. Snider today.

Contact Us 469.598.2400