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Mytien Goldberg, MD, FACS

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Cosmetic Breast Surgery: The Challenges of Breast Implant Revisions

Posted June 24, 2013 in Breast Implant Revision, Breast Revision

Breast implant revision surgeries are generally the most challenging form of cosmetic breast surgery for both patient and surgeon. Patients who have already had a disappointing experience are often, quite understandably, very anxious about the procedure. Surgeons are wading into a difficult situation as well, charged with the responsibility of correcting mistakes made by another surgeon or damage done by complications.

Common Reasons Revisions Become Necessary

Breast augmentation is a fairly routine cosmetic breast surgery procedure that produces good aesthetic results in the vast majority of women. However, on occasion, problems do occur that make revision surgery necessary. Among the most common reasons that breast implant replacement becomes necessary is improper implant sizing. Implants that are too large for a woman’s body style and anatomy increase risk of complications that include stretching and thinning of breast tissue or implant problems, such as rippling or rupture. Capsular contracture is another common reason that cosmetic breast surgery goes wrong, and is a condition in which scar tissue forms around the implant, often resulting in pain and misshapen or hardened breasts. Other issues that can lead to revision include an unsatisfactory aesthetic result, implant deflation and infection, among many others.

Preparing For Breast Implant Revision

While any cosmetic breast surgery requires careful and detailed preoperative planning, it is even more essential to be well-prepared for revision procedures. Typically, they are more complicated than an initial implant procedure, since scarring and damage is often an issue. Also, a surgeon performing a revision is working in an area that has already been altered by another surgeon, sometimes in unexpected or problematic ways. For this reason, it is vital that revision patients are very open in providing their surgeon with all relevant details related tot he original procedure, and that all medical records are made available. Additionally, patients may undergo several physical examinations and consultations with the surgeon during the planning process, since a safe and satisfactory result depends on the surgeon knowing as much about the situation as possible.

Revision Surgery: What to Expect

Revision surgery will likely take at least as long as your original cosmetic breast surgery. If it is a simple revision, done to replace a ruptured implant, it should not be a terribly long or complex procedure. On the other hand, if scarring, stretching or other, damage is an issue, or there are complex deformities to be resolved, revision may be a prolonged and challenging procedure. Your surgeon should be able to provide you with specific details in advance of your procedure.

Recovery time will depend upon the difficulty and circumstances surrounding your revision. For simple revisions, recovery may be easier than it was with the original cosmetic breast surgery. More complex cases may cause greater discomfort and prolonged healing and recovery. Of course, your surgeon, who will be familiar with the particulars of your procedure, will be able to give you more specific guidance on expected recovery times after a thorough evaluation has been performed.

Goldberg Plastic Surgery services patients in the Long Beach, Manhattan Beach, Palos Verdes, Redondo Beach, South Bay, & Torrance areas for cosmetic breast surgery procedure


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