What Happens During Total Capsulectomy/Explant Surgery?
Total Capsulectomy/Explant removes the breast implants and hardened scar tissue by cutting out the entire formed scar capsule, including the capsule that has formed behind the implant. It is up to you to determine whether or not you prefer to have a breast implant replacement as part of your procedure.
In cases where patients prefer not to have an implant replacement, I repair your pectoralis muscle and reattach it back to the chest wall ribs. This process diminishes the possibility of post-operative seroma, which is a fluid accumulation in the space previously occupied by the implant. I generally propose a breast lift procedure with a Total Capsulectomy/Explant at the same time if it is feasible.
Total Capsulectomy/Explant also has become more important in the proper management of suspected Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma (a rare type of non-Hodgkin lymphoma) and suspected illnesses associated with breast implants. I have developed a comprehensive protocol in our outpatient hospitals for the evaluation of the Total Capsulectomy/Explant tissue specimen after surgery.
I evaluate the tissue through pathology and microbiology assessments, including testing for BIA-ALCL, standard tissue pathology, anaerobic and aerobic culture with gram stain, as well as acid-fast bacteria, fungal, and viral cultures to test for ALCL or breast implant illness. We take patients’ concerns seriously about their health, which is why we subject the tissues to comprehensive testing.