Although complications are not completely unheard of following breast surgery, they do happen. Such examples of complications might include/but are not limited to:
- Breast Asymmetry: a difference in either the breast size/shape or both
- Capsular Contracture: an abnormal response by the immune system to the insertion of foreign materials into the body. Often times the breast tissue will grow around the implant causing the implant to look and feel hard.
- Nipple Sensation Change/Loss: there can be an increase, decrease, or loss of all nipple/breast sensation as a result of breast surgery. This can be temporary or permanent, partial or complete.
- Hematoma: a collection of blood in the surgical cavity that requires surgical evacuation
- Infection: although uncommon, can happen early in the healing phase. Antibiotic medication is generally prescribed for the first day following surgery to help prevent this.
- Tissue Necrosis: local tissue death that occurs as a response to disease or injury
- Keloid Scarring: is a raised/reddened scar that forms as a result of excessive scar tissue growth at the site of a healed injury/surgical incision.
- Blood Clots: DVT (deep vein thrombosis) is a blood clot that is formed deep within a vein, most commonly occurring in the leg. This is seen more commonly in patients who are on over the counter prescriptions, smokers, and patients with a high BMI.
- Implant Rupture: a tear or a hole in the implant shell, which occurs as a result or trauma or normal wear and tear.
There are steps that you can take to help reduce the risk of such complications occurring.
- Do not take any aspirin or aspirin containing products including: Advil/Ibuprofen, Aleve, mega-vitamins, or herbal
preparations for at least two weeks as they thin the blood which promotes bleeding. Tylenol is permitted.
- Do not smoke for at least three weeks prior to surgery. The blood circulation in the skin is significantly decreased
when smoking and this can cause severe complications such as delayed wound healing.
- Take prescribed antibiotics as prescribed until finished to help minimize the risk for infection.
- Do not lift anything heavier than a book or raise your arms above your head or away from your body for at least one
week. Once Dr. Chahin permits you may begin lifting no more than 5 pounds a week, increasing each following week by 5 pounds until you are completely healed.
- Do not overdo it. Listen to your body and if at any time you are not comfortable, or feel any type of pain
immediately stop what you are doing.
- Begin massaging your breast implants once instructed by Dr. Chahin. This will help to reduce the risk of symptomatic presentation.
- If at any time you experience any trauma (such as a fall or car accident), follow up as soon as possible with our office
to ensure that the implants remain intact, as sometimes the implant can rupture or a slow leak can occur.
- We recommend an annual complementary follow up policy for all our patients. Do realize that breast implants are not intended to last
a lifetime, and therefore they may need to be replaced in due time (on average 8-12 years) for variable reasons.
Although some complications can be avoided, some can be predicted such as Keloid Scarring. There are treatments in place that can
help diminish the appearance of such scarring, however, no treatment is completely guaranteed. By following post-operative instructions outlined by Dr. Chahin prior to surgery, you can help to diminish the risk of complications occurring.
For more information on plastic surgery and the procedures Dr. Chahin offers, please schedule a consultation and visit your choice of offices located in either Beverly Hills or the San Fernando Valley/Tarzana.
Fadi Chahin M.D, F.A.C.S
Board Certified Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeon