When considering breast augmentation in Denver, most patients think about the surgery and the results, skipping right over the healing process. Proper care and attention for your body during the recovery period is essential to avoiding potential complications down the road.
Every surgery has its risks, even getting breast implants. For Denver women undergoing augmentation, many of the most common surgical risks may be preventable by following a few simple tips. First, always follow any specific post operative care suggested by your surgeon. And secondly, practice common sense like keeping incisions clean and taking any prescribed antibiotics.
Washing with antibacterial soap prior to surgery and keeping the amount of outside handling of the incision to a bare minimum can also reduce any infection risk. After your procedure, take care to keep incisions clean and dry. While some discomfort during healing is normal and even expected, notify your surgeon immediately if you develop a fever, swelling, redness or other classic signs of infection at the incision site.
Minimizing Capsular Contracture
Capsular contracture is the development of an excessive scar tissue pocket around the breast implant. This can cause the breast to feel hardened to the touch. Feelings of tightness and pain are also common with capsular contracture, and may radiate out to surrounding areas. Breasts may appear asymmetrical if only one implant develops capsular contracture. Although scar tissue is not unusual after a surgery, when it becomes so advanced as to cause pain and rigidity in the breast, an additional surgery may be necessary for correction.
No surgeon can guarantee the prevention of developing capsular contracture, but there are some steps patients may take to minimize the risks.
- Implant Placement: Submuscular implant placement carries a lower risk of developing capsular contracture than subglandular placement. This may be due to the increased amount of bacteria in the breast ducts, which are in closer proximity to implants with a subglandular placement.
- Implant Type: Saline implants have a lower risk associated with developing capsular contracture than silicone implants. However, studies suggest that textured silicone implants carry a lower risk of capsular contracture than those with smooth shells, so if a silicone implant is preferred, there are still ways to reduce the chances of severe scar tissue development.*
- Post-Operative Massage: Massaging the breast gently following surgery is thought to help keep the surrounding tissue pocket supple and pliant. This in turn then reduces the development and excessive hardening of scar tissue within the breasts.* Massage can begin as soon as the sutures are removed, or whenever your surgeon gives the all clear. During the initial healing phase, massages may be needed twice daily and last up to 30 minutes total. As time passes, just a few minutes once per day should be enough to continue keeping scar tissue at bay.*
The Healing Process
In addition to taking care of your incisions and practicing your post-operative massage, remember to get plenty of rest so your body has the time and energy it needs to heal properly.* Avoid strenuous activities and heavy lifting for several weeks after surgery. The exact length of time may vary depending on implant placement and individual healing progress. You may also need to wear a compression garment temporarily to aid in the healing process.*
*This information is for education only, and is not meant as a guarantee of results. Your results may vary.