Capsular fibrosis – when the protective shield becomes a problem

Every operation carries risks and can, under certain circumstances, lead to damage to health that would not have occurred without the intervention. For this reason, many people shy away from cosmetic surgery in particular, as it is one of the most absolutely avoidable. With the proper education and one appropriate care in wound healing, however, you do not have to forgo the great emotional relief that modern plastic surgery can provide. Dr. Bernard and her team always make informing you about and avoiding risks during surgery a top priority. A particularly common risk associated with breast augmentation with implants is the Capsular fibrosis is the most common form of breast cancer. It can occur on one side or on both breasts simultaneously in varying degrees.

Recognize symptoms of capsular fibrosis

A common and well-intentioned immune response of the body is to shield foreign bodies that refuse to be removed from the rest of the organism by forming a delicate tissue envelope. This in itself can even be seen as an advantage, because the implant can be removed by the slight Fibrosis is still additionally held in place.

It becomes problematic when the delicate shell develops into a massive shell. The growth of capsular fibrosis leads in four stages via hardening of the breast to displacement or twisting of the implant, wrinkling and finally to persistent pain and an unacceptable external appearance.

Full-blown fibrosis not only hurts, it drastically reverses the aesthetic effect of breast augmentation. The armor-like, inflexible shell rigorously compresses the implant. The result is hard, extremely touch-sensitive, tennis ball-shaped breasts.

In the worst case, untreated capsular fibrosis can cause the implant to rupture and the silicone inside to leak out. At this point at the latest, surgery is unavoidable, because this factor can have significant consequences.

Act early

The first signs of capsular fibrosis are feelings of tightness in the breast, to a slight pulling sensation during movements that stretch the chest muscles. Treatment does not necessarily need to be initiated at this stage, nor will fibrosis necessarily worsen.

Nevertheless, you play it safe if you seek the advice of your surgeon even at the first signs. She can make an accurate diagnosis by palpation of the breast and an ultrasound examination and recommend further treatment steps.

Respond appropriately

For mild stage one capsular fibrosis, massage techniques can provide relief. If pain is added, medication with anti-inflammatory agents or even ultrasound treatment is recommended. This improves blood flow and oxygen supply to the tissue capsule, making it significantly more elastic and flexible.

If the capsular fibrosis is already so advanced that it is visible and palpable from the outside, surgical treatment cannot be avoided. The tissue capsule is either loosened or removed completely. In most cases, all that is needed is a so-called Fibrosis incisionto provide more space for the implant again.

If capsular fibrosis is already fully developed, the entire armor-like tissue must be removed along with the implant, which can be replaced with a new one if desired.

Cover through insurance

Capsule removal with simultaneous implant replacement is about the same cost as an initial breast augmentation.

Even if the follow-up operation was ordered by a doctor or is unavoidable, as in the case of capsular fibrosis that can no longer be treated in any other way, health insurance does not usually cover the costs of removing the implant together with the hardened capsule, and the operation must again be financed by the patient.

However, it is possible to take out a special insurance policy before the first implants are inserted, which fully covers implant replacement in the event of capsular fibrosis during the first three years.


The best way to cure is to prevent the disease from occurring in the first place.

Since capsular fibrosis is one of the most common consequences of breast implant surgery, there are now several studies on how to prevent it. First, the choice of an appropriate implant is important. Studies found that products with roughened surfaces were less likely to cause capsular fibrosis than comparable products with smooth surfaces. Breast augmentation with autologous fat can also be a sensible alternative.

There are some recommendations to the surgeon to avoid capsular fibrosis, these include taking special precautions during surgery, and there are also numerous behavioral recommendations to patients following surgery. Of course, these recommendations are carried out and pronounced in the practice of Dr. Bernard.

Talk to the expert in breast implants about the risk and avoidance of capsular fibrosis after breast augmentation with implants. Properly prepared, such complications can easily be nipped in the bud and nothing stands in the way of a beautiful, shapely breast!