What to expect after surgery
Mastopexy, (also know as a breast lift, scars can take a while to heal due to the size of the scars. Dr. Urzola uses an anchor lift for his explant patients. It’s the oldest mastopexy technique, considered by many surgeons to be the “gold standard” for women requiring a significant amount of skin to be removed in order to achieve a better shape and perkier breast. It’s also the most invasive method and leaves the largest scar. This technique involves 3 incisions: one around the edge of the areola, one vertically from the bottom of the areola to the breast crease, and one along the inframammary fold where doctors try to hide it in the breast crease.
No one wants extra scars that are not necessary and many explant patients try to avoid a breast lift at all cost even when it is needed. Dr. Urzola will not recommend a breast lift unless he feels it is necessary for the best outcome.
If doing explant only, Dr. Urzola will do his best to use your existing scars if implants were placed under the fold of the breast.
– Keep your arms close to your side after a breast lift
– Wear the compression garments that you have been instructed to wear. These will reduce inflammation and minimize scarring.
– Once the scars are healed, massaging them with a fingertip can prevent tissue hardening.
– Protecting scars from the sun can keep them from darkening in color.
– Avoid smoking, which can worsen the appearance of scars.
– Wearing your tape can flatten and fade scars.
*Different types of skin tones and hereditary traits can affect how the scars appear.
We do our best to make our patients comfortable, but patients should know that this is not a pain free surgery. The amount of pain a patient suffers varies from patient to patient. It will range from mild to severe and it will depend on the extensiveness of the procedure, existing scar tissue, difficulty with removing your implants and capsule and each individuals pain threshold.
Try to keep your spirits up by realizing that what you are experiencing is a common and very normal response to surgery. Healing in many cases is slow and gradual and it is important to always bear in mind the reasons you decided to undergo the surgery in the first place.
Dr. Urzola and his staff have available all the necessary drugs used world wide to treat pain. A basic pain protocol is started for each patient after the consultation with the anesthesiologist and it can be modified depending on each individuals needs. It is important to let know Dr. Urzola or someone in his staff know if the pain protocol is insufficient so that the proper re-arrangements in the pain control protocol can be made to provide you with a more individualized pain control if needed. Dr Urzola’s anesthesiologists are available 24-7 if it’s necessary to consult them.
Our bodies are naturally asymmetrical, to include our breasts. A few factors play into this, amongst them: the natural symmetry of your breasts, previous capsular contractures and scaring. During your healing it will be common to have asymmetrical breasts due to swelling, but after your full recovery in most patients the symmetry accomplished is very acceptable and aesthetically pleasing.
Swelling and bruising
Swelling is common after the surgery and the amount will vary from patient to patient. Expect swelling to last anywhere from three weeks to three months and in some cases even longer. Swelling can be decreased by wearing your compression garment over the areas that have been operated on for a period of 4 weeks.
Numbness or hypersensitivity
The nerves to areas after explant are traumatized therefore numbness after these surgical procedures are expected for several weeks to months following surgery. It can take up to one year to regain sensation in some rare cases it might never come back.If there is an alteration of the sensitivity, the most frequent scenario is to experience transitory hipo-sentitivity or hypersensitivity, performing continuous superficial massages everyday to the nipple-areola complex will help you regain the normal sensitivity.
Nerve regeneration:Itchy skin and postop spontaneous pains
Shortly after surgery patients often describe a sharp, stabbing, shooting or electric shock pain that can be very uncomfortable. These symptoms usually resolve in 6 to 9 weeks without intervention. Whenever nerves are cut, they have raw nerve endings that need to heal. During the process of healing, these raw endings spontaneously fire signals to your brain that can be perceived as anything from stabbing pain to an itch to burning sensation. These feelings should subside as the nerve endings heal.
Having explant alone is a very emotional experience for many women. It’s not only a physical change but an emotional change as well. You just spent a lot of money, you’re in pain and the results are not there yet. Add to that the natural stress hormones produced by the effects of anesthesia combined with any pain medications and you have the perfect formula for feeling very depressed and emotional, be rest assured that it does pass.