Capsular Contracture

Description & Prevention

Capsular contracture is the most common complication resulting from breast augmentation surgery. Capsular contracture is scar tissue that results from the insertion of foreign materials into the body. Fortunately, modern techniques can help to limit scar formation.

The most common mechanical complication of Breast Implant Augmentation is the development of a foreign body scar Capsular Contracture. There are certain techniques that I apply to greatly limit the likelihood of this problem, leading to a higher percentage of excellent results following Implant Breast Enlargement Surgery. Whenever any material is inserted into the body, be it suture, metal (such as a total joint), plastic, or silicone, the body will respond with a non-specific reaction of scar formation to try to wall off the foreign material with a scar covering. Ordinarily the body will try to limit as much as possible the size of this scar, and thus completely exclude the material into the smallest possible space. Scar formation cells have special characteristics that facilitate this normal biological behavior, but there are ways to limit the scar response by appropriate techniques both before, during, and after breast implant surgery.

First, it is very important to limit any compromise to the body's regenerative capacity. Thus it is important to maximize blood and oxygen delivery to the healing wounds by quitting smoking several weeks before the breast implant surgery.

Second, it is important to limit potential germ contamination at the time of breast augmentation surgery by adequate pre-op hygiene, including a thorough shower the morning of surgery (most soaps are germicidal, so most will do fine), Patients should also avoid shaving the armpits (for trans-axillary technique) for ten days before the morning of surgery to prevent ingrown hair abscesses in the surgical field. A strong anti- bacterial prep is done at surgery to avoid germ contamination.

Third, our plastic surgeons avoid incisions in the breast's submuscular space. That is because this area is known to harbor bacteria, which can cause scar capsule formation.

Fourth, the plastic surgeon creates create an oversized submuscular pocket, significantly larger than the breast implant size. This also helps to reduce the likelihood of capsule contracture.

Fifth, early and vigorous post-op massage of the breast implants keeps them soft, freely moveable, and looking natural.


Important Steps to Prevent Capsule Scar Contractures

  • Quit smoking pre-op
  • Antibacterial shower and prep; no axillary shaving for 10 days
  • Avoid cutting through breast tissue to avoid bacterial contamination
  • Submuscular implant placement in vertically oversized pockets
  • Start early post-op massage of implants to keep pockets open
The plastic surgeons at California Surgical Institute's Beverly Hills, Upland, Brea and Riverside Clinics (respectively our Los Angeles, San Bernardino, Orange and Riverside County locations) offer Complimentary Consultations to answer any questions you may have. To schedule your appointment, please call 866-372-3288 or submit the form at the top of the page.

California Surgical Institute

9025 Wilshire Blvd, Suite 411, Beverly Hills, CA 90211

Brea: 910 E. Birch St, Suite 350, Brea, CA 92821

Upland: 930 W. Foothill Blvd. Upland, CA 91786

Riverside: 7120 Indiana Ave. Riverside, CA, 92506

By Phone: 866-372-3288

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