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Topic: Vertical Implant Displacement / Migration, Subpectoral​ Implants

Forum: Breast Reconstruction —

Talk with others facing decisions about whether or not to have breast reconstruction, and if so, what type and when.

Posted on: May 4, 2021 09:48AM

Tablerock1689 wrote:

Hello, this is the first time I have posted. Most of the time I find what I need just reading and don't even have to ask but this time even after a few days of searching I haven't found anyone talking about an experience like this. If you know of one please direct me to the thread or suggest other search terms.

This is my story.

I was diagnosed w/ bc 3.5 years ago- two cancerous tumors in my left breast and a monoallelic mutation of the NBN gene that increased my chance of recurrence. I got bilateral mastectomies with delayed reconstruction. Chemo, no radiation. Ended up with a small-to-medium allergan style ssf-450 implants. About a year after my exchange from expanders to subpectoral implants I experienced vertical displacement of my right (non-cancer) breast. My plastic surgeon described it as a "deformity of reconstructed breast" with capsular contracture. Over a year my right breast dropped about an inch and I had a resulting hollow above. The hollow bothered me more than the drop. it was noticeable under clothes, even with a tight sports-bra on. There was no pain or discomfort other than aesthetic. Let me add that I am a cyclist and lift light weights but this was all with my PS's approval and guidance. I never did any heavy weights (2-3 pound hand-weights max) and gave up pushups, pull-ups and even yoga prior to the displacement.

On January 28 of this year (3 months ago) I had corrective surgery for the displacement. The right implant was removed and replaced and extensive quilting was done so that the displacement wouldn't happen again.

I wore compression bandages for 6 weeks until March 10. I had a follow-up March 10 was able to stop wearing the compression bra all the time and was released for regular activities including light weight lifting. Let me stress that I did not lift anything during my recovery or engage in any activities that could have compromised my implant--i wanted it to be right and to heal correctly. I didn't lift weights or do anything other than an easy bike ride the Saturday after being released but by the following Monday-5 days later- my right breast had dropped noticeably. I saw my PS again on March 26th and he confirmed.

Since then ONLY ONE MONTH! Shockedmy breast has dropped vertically at least 2 inches. I have the hollow on my chest, it is noticeable with clothes and now painful on the underside, on the crease below the breast with some pain in the armpit. I also have some numbness in my pinky and second finger on my right hand. My PS says I need to wait until fall to have this corrected. As quickly and dramatically as it has moved in the last six weeks I am afraid of how it will look and feel by then. I am also terrified to go through the pain and expense of surgery and two months out of my life and then it not work AGAIN. I wish that I had left well enough alone! I know that people are dealing with so much worse and especially now, but this is really getting me down. I am considering getting the implants removed entirely but (from reading here) that comes with another host of complications.

Has anyone out there experienced this? what was your outcome? how was it fixed? what caused it and how can i avoid it? is the implant going to stop moving or will it just keep on? I can see it happening once - i thought it was just a fluke - but twice that quickly? it makes no sense! I have been lifting 2-pound hand weights again but my gosh! I have to be able to open doors and lift a gallon of milk.

Looking forward to hearing from you and thank you.


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May 4, 2021 10:31AM VegGal wrote:

Tim to gather second opinions from several docs. Many don’t like to fix others’ messes, but it is worth your time to do your research.

How distressing! Good luck.

Dx 1/12/2016, DCIS, Left, <1cm, Stage 0, Grade 2, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2- Surgery 3/11/2016 Mastectomy: Left; Prophylactic mastectomy: Right; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Surgery 6/10/2016 Reconstruction (left): Silicone implant; Reconstruction (right): Silicone implant Surgery 9/8/2017 Reconstruction (left): Fat grafting, Silicone implant; Reconstruction (right): Fat grafting, Silicone implant
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May 4, 2021 10:52AM bcincolorado wrote:

I do not know where you are located but if you are near a place where there are options where you are covered it is worth having you checked out. You may also ask your MO their their opinion as well since they may have ideas for you. Best wishes.

Dx 8/2009, IDC, Left, 5cm, Stage IIA, Grade 1, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 1/6/2010 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Left Hormonal Therapy 1/14/2010 Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone) Hormonal Therapy 1/29/2016 Femara (letrozole)
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Nov 18, 2021 11:47AM - edited Nov 18, 2021 11:49AM by iforevera

I also have a similar problem. And I am in the process of getting my MRI for final evaluation. My original doctor has retired, but my physician who did an additional procedure for me, and is my insurance PPO for reconstruction, has agreed to perform the surgery. Reconstruction under my insurance is covered as a durable medical equipment and covered at 70%. Federal law supports reconstruction but does not state what that must be for a redo. (I have had the same insurance previous to my breast cancer diagnosis. My original surgery was 12 years ago so although this is frustrating to me, I am encouraged that new materials allow them to reinforce the slings that hold the implant. I have 700 cc Allegren rounds HP with 800-850 inflation. Unfortunately, our tissue stretches and everything slides but it does sound like your supports were not correctly done. I have an excellent surgeon that I have known for years. for years. Oh, and do not beat yourself up, I regularly lift much more than the weights you are lifting.

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