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Recovery Tips from Explant Surgery Due To BIA-ALCL

| August 17, 2022 August 2, 2023 | | Leave your thoughts

explant surgery recovery tips

Breast Implant-Associated Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma (BIA-ALCL) usually develops in the scar capsule tissue that forms around a breast implant. But just like any cancer, it can spread throughout the body and can even lead to death.

The primary procedure for BIA-ALCL is breast implant removal or explant surgery. There are multiple approaches to an explant procedure. But in treating BIA-ALCL, the scar tissue capsule and the implant have to be removed in one piece.

This prevents any fluid from coming into contact with the normal tissue left behind. This is why Total En Bloc Capsulectomy is the only applicable explant technique in treating BIA-ALCL.

Is Explant Surgery Covered By Insurance

In this video, Dr. Ergun Kocak and Dr. Pankaj Tiwari talk about when explant surgery could be covered by insurance.

The Total En Bloc Capsulectomy Process

Total En Bloc Capsulectomy is an outpatient surgical procedure that often lasts for two hours. You will be placed under general anesthesia during the operation. Your surgeon will create an incision under your breast (called the inframammary fold) or around the areola. The original incision from your breast augmentation may also be used to avoid additional scarring.

Your surgeon has to be strategic with the incision because its length is crucial. In most cases, scar tissue capsules can be really thin and can be torn easily. So, the incision has to be long enough to take out the entire capsule and the implant inside in one piece. But at the same time, the incision should not go beyond the entire length of the inframammary fold.

Then, the scar tissue capsule with the implant inside is carefully teased away from the breast tissue. Your surgeon will remove any remaining scar tissue as thoroughly as possible. Finally, they will clean the breast pocket before closing the incision.

Total En Bloc Capsulectomy: The Hard Capsule and Infection – Dr. Tiwari

In this video, Dr. Tiwari shows an example of submuscular spectrum implant, also known as expandable saline implant, that has been placed for a long time. He later proves how hard the capsule can be by hammering it.

Explant Surgery Recovery Tips

Your recovery starts as soon as you leave the clinic. You will need to have someone to drive you home as you will not be able to do so otherwise.

Rest should be your priority for the next few days following the procedure. Take it easy and avoid doing your usual activities, such as driving and lifting heavy objects. However, you may do some light walking around the house if you are able to do so. Improved blood circulation can help with your healing.

It is normal for the chest and breasts to be swollen and sore over the next few weeks, and they typically resolve on their own. Wear your compression garment for two to three weeks to keep your incisions secure during your recovery.

Do not forget to seek clearance from your surgeon before returning to work. Still, continue avoiding lifting heavy objects, doing intense workouts, and performing activities that put a strain on your chest area for at least six weeks. During this timeframe, remember that you can only sleep on your back.

Please take your medications as instructed by your surgeon. They can prevent any complications and expedite the healing process.

You should avoid submerging your incisions by taking a bath and swimming for two weeks. You can shower the following day, but avoid using hot water or angling the shower head toward your incision.

If you see any irregularities in your incision sites, immediately call your surgeon.

Addressing Your Worries

Allow Midwest Breast & Aesthetic Surgery to address your worries regarding BIA-ALCL. Total En Bloc Capsulectomy is a more demanding technique than the typical explant procedure. We have a team of surgeons who have extensive experience and expert skills to perform this difficult explant approach.

Our clinic also offers Fat Transfer Breast Augmentation. As the name suggests, it transfers fat from another body part to your chest area. This already eliminates the need for any breast implants.

You can always choose a Flat Closure. Echoing the body positivity movement worldwide, this procedure has been gaining steady popularity and empowering a lot of women.

Book a consultation with us to know more about these procedures.

About the Author

Dr. Ergun Kocak, MD, is a board-certified plastic surgeon who specializes in plastic and reconstructive surgery of the breast using DIEP, SIEA GAP, TUG, PAP, and direct-to-implant, in Columbus and Cincinnati, OH.
Follow Dr. Kocak on Twitter & Facebook!

*Our blog entries are written in order to further educate our patients and raise awareness towards topics related to plastic surgery. Any solutions offered on this blog are intended to help possible patients develop educated decisions before undergoing a consultation with our doctors.

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