One of the most common complications from breast reconstruction or augmentation is capsular contracture or capsular contraction, a condition that results in distorted and sometimes even painful, hard breasts. Typically, patients experience a progressive capsular contracture, with changes in the breast aesthetics that may begin 6-9 months after treatment and continue to develop over 2-10 years. The implant becomes fixed and uncomfortable, and the cosmetic appearance is compromised.
A capsule is the normal tissue that the body produces surrounding a breast implant. Usually, it is pretty thin, sometimes almost transparent. The capsule is larger than the implant, allowing them both to move around and feel soft. In capsular contracture, the capsule becomes thicker and tightens which makes the space for the implant smaller and smaller. Some signs of capsular contracture can be the implant rising to a higher position on the chest or the breast looking oddly constricted and artificially round, like a baseball. The capsule can get so small that the implant feels firm (grade 3 capsular contracture) or can even feel hard and be painful (grade 4 capsular contracture).
Studies show that up to 60% of women who have had breast radiation and 6.7% of women who receive breast implant augmentation surgery develop capsular contracture. Once you have developed capsular contracture, then you know that the chances are increased for contracture again after surgery.
Capsular contractureis caused by anything that leads to inflammation of the capsule, making it thick and tight. Although the reason for why this happens isn't fully understood, the cause of capsular contraction is different patient to patient, and may be a result of several contributing factors. Breast readiation, although life-saving, can increase the risk of capsular contracture. When radiation is needed, the risk of capsular contracture and deformity of the breast increases. Capsular contracture occurs if the scar or capsule around the implant begins to tighten.
Other common reasons in addition to radiation treatments include trauma or bleeding around the implant from the surgery, bacterial infection and biofilms (a film of cells that grow on inert surfaces), ruptured silicone or remnants of silicone from an old rupture, or patient reactivity to a foreign body.
Capsular Contracture Release Therapy is a unique non-invasive treatment that combines different integrated manual therapies to help painlessly break-up the excess scar tissue and release the capsule. For patients with mild to moderate cases of capsular contracture, this treatment can help relieve pain and hardness and help the breast implant assume a more natural position without having to undergo the expense, recovery time, and risks of a second surgery.
How do I know? Because it happened to me. My reason for developing this non-surgical painless alternative was because capsular contracture happened to me. The proposed solution of yet ANOTHER surgery (capsulectomy) and then developing an increased risk for this condition after surgery to remove the scare tissue sounded alarming, I’ll admit, it was my utter annoyance that there were no other options available for women (other than surgery or taking Singular) that had me reeling. Additionally, the thought of having what felt like a painful petrified baseball affixed to one side of my chest was NOT an option either. The day I spoke to my plastic surgeon about post radiation side-effects was the day I decided to do something.
So armed with my knowledge in physiology, anatomy, and integrated manual therapies I began with treatment on myself. I am happy to report that I am 100% contracture-free and the process was painless. My success even surprised my plastic surgeon as he could not believe the results when I went in for my 7 month post radiation follow-up appointment. I am happy to report that since I developed my Capsular Contracture Release Therapy, I have experienced the same successes in other women (approximately one to two sessions).
I feel truly blessed to be able to share my story and to offer a non-surgical alternative to this condition.
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