ALCL

Breast Implant Removal & Life after surgery

ALCL

Breast Implant Removal & Life after surgery

Choosing an EN BLOC CAPSULECTOMY surgeon and Life after surgery

What is "En Bloc"

This term is widely used among patients, however many surgeons refer to the procedure as a capsulectomy. En bloc and capsulectomy having the same meaning. For suffers of breast implant illness it is very important the capsule is removed in its entirety with the implant. The capsule and implant is kept in-tact so as not to further contaminate the body. The "capsule" is referring to scar tissue surrounding the implant, this is normal. When any foreign body enters our body, the natural defense mechanisms are triggered. From day one of the implant being inserted the body begins to produce scar tissue, over time this scar tissue increases and forms a capsule surrounding the implant.

If the implant is contaminated, ruptured or causing illness it is believed by patients the capsule is contaminated by the silicone. Research is currently underway in regard to bacteria living on and around the implant. This bacteria lives in what is referred to as a bio-film. The bio-film lives independently without a blood supply.

Having an "En Bloc" procedure is sought after by patients as they want reassurance the implant, any bio-film and any possible silicone is removed entirely. Women suffering breast implant illness want to move on with their lives and rightfully so. This debilitating illness destroys lives. Some surgeons are empathetic and appreciate the patients high anxiety levels as a result of their implant journey. However others refuse to acknowledge the illness until scientific evidence proves the disease is in fact real. However we believe remaining non-bias and supporting women is imperative. Not so long ago Chronic Fatigue was not a recognized illness. Let's also mention the stomach ulcer which was believed to be from stress, until a doctor induced the bacteria and proved the stomach ulcer was curable and in fact as a result of bacteria.

We have constructed a list of the TOP Australian En Bloc surgeons;

Sydney: Dr Marucci, Prof. Anand Deva, Dr Rob Knight and Dr Amira Sanki

Canberra: Dr Ros Farhadieh and Dr Vlad Milovik

Melbourne: Mr Dean White, Prof. Ashton and Dr Jeremy Richardson

Queensland: Dr Doyle, Dr Dilip Gahankari, Dr Magnusson, Dr Widdowson, Dr Craig Layt

Carins: Dr Isolde Hertess

Brisbane: Dr Scott Ingram

Adelaide: Dr Cooter and Dr Lam

Perth: Dr Edward Van Beem, Dr Anh

Tasmania: Not enough research as yet

Northern Territory: only two Specialist Plastic Surgeons reside in NT

Please contact us if you would like more help finding a En Bloc surgeon.

*There is no financial incentive or affiliation with any of the above surgeons. This list has been created from our independent research and as a guide only. We encourage all patients to seek a second opinion whenever considering an invasive procedure. *

If after a lot of careful self evaluation and soul searching - you have decided to have explant surgery, then you will need to be prepared to make the next important step which is finding a explant surgeon. Most surgery involves serious operations that can never be guaranteed to work perfectly but the chances of them going wrong are much less if your surgeon is qualified, ethical and trustworthy. That is why searching for a surgeon becomes a much clearer and easier task if you know what to look for and where.

It is important to point out at the early stages of your search for a explant surgeon, that many kinds of doctors perform explant surgery, even though they may have no specific training in plastic surgery. Certain laws allow them to advertise a certification in another field of surgery without actually specifying which the field, because of limited consumer protection, such doctors are allowed to perform explant surgery in an office based surgery setting regardless of whether they are actually specialized in cosmetic and plastic surgery.

Advertising by such doctors can be confusing and even misleading, it is advisable that you shortlist explant surgeons that are specially trained, certified, and experienced in the procedure that you want.

Why place yourself in the hands of a doctor or surgeon that isn't actually trained and experienced in the field of explant surgery?

That is why we have a directory of fully qualified, trained and compassionate surgeons for you to choose from.

Surgeon Directory HERE

Here is a check list that can help you define your search criteria

Ideally Your Explant Surgeon should have the following credentials

  • Your surgeon should have completed medical school
  • Your surgeon should have completed a residency in plastic/cosmetic surgery
  • Your surgeon should have a medical specialization
  • Your surgeon should have hospital privileges for the procedure you want
  • Your surgeon should be Board Certified (vetted by their speciality board) as a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon or a Board Certified Cosmetic Surgeon
  • Your surgeon should be a member of an approved Board of Medical Specialities Society, in your country
  • Your surgeon should have proven experience and demonstrated skill in explant surgery

I have put together the following tips for making life easier both before and after your explant surgery.

Things you will need to purchase in advance:

  • Triangle pillow for sleeping
  • Sports bras or compression bras
  • Organic Rose HIp oil or organic coconut oil or organic sesame oil for massage (once cleared by your surgeon)
  • Tissues
  • Wet ones/wet wipes/baby wipes
  • Phone credit (if you're on Pre-paid)
  • Stool softener, as you may be constipated from the pain meds
  • Purchase probiotics
  • Fill prescriptions, eg contraceptive pill, pain meds
  • Buy gauze for dressing changes, vitamins and anything approved or requested by plastic surgeon.
  • Bottled water
  • Sanitary napkins (handy for placing over incisions in your bra to stop the bra rubbing)

Organise the following in advance:

  • Pre cook meals and shop in advance
  • Arrange someone to look after your children, school run etc
  • Make sure any prescription medications have been filled and are in a convenient location
  • Bedside table/tray to hold all the stuff you'll need/want through the night including emergency phone numbers
  • Clothes that are easy to get on and off like comfy shorts, soft open front tops, singlets/tank tops that you can step into
  • Consider waxing legs/underarms before Surgery
  • Have eyelashes tinted (so you don't need to apply mascara
  • Braid hair, or at least have bands to pull it back
  • Make your bed with fresh sheets and pillow cases
  • Do the laundry.
  • Clean the house
  • Do the dishes
  • Position food in pantry and fridge at lower levels to avoid above head reaching
  • Keep a plastic bucket nearby (anaesthesia and medications can make you nauseous)
  • Wash your hair

* Things for your bedside table –

  • Chap stick for dry lips
  • Emergency phone numbers
  • Tissues
  • Medications
  • Bottled water
  • Vix vapour rub or similar product for relief from stuffy nose
  • Mouthwash
  • Bucket beside the bed
  • Glasses
  • Hair brush
  • Lemonade or ginger ale
  • Slippers beside the bed
  • Wet wipes/baby wipes

Remember all of are different and there are no hard and fast rules in what you will need. The items and hints listed here are suggestions I have made over the years and other women have found them useful or wished they had known these things in advance.

Let your body do its job in healing itself, your job is to be loving and kind to yourself and keep hydrated while the healing takes place ?

LIFE AFTER SURGERY

After surgery you will be taken to a recovery area to be monitored. Your breasts will be wrapped in gauze, compression garment, bandages or a surgical bra.

Your surgeon should describe the usual after surgery (postoperative) recovery process, the possible complications that may occur, and the recovery period. Following the operation, as with any surgery, you can expect some pain, swelling, bruising and tenderness. These effects may last for a month or longer, but should disappear with time. Scarring is a natural result of surgery. Prior to surgery, ask your surgeon to describe the location, size and appearance of any expected scars. For most women, scars will fade over time into thin lines.

Your surgeon may prescribe medications for pain and/or nausea. If you experience bleeding, fever, warmth, redness of the breast, or other symptoms of infection, you should immediately report these symptoms to your surgeon. Your surgeon should tell you about wound healing and how to care for your wound.

You may need a postoperative bra, compression bandage or jogging bra for extra support as you heal. At your surgeon’s recommendation you will most likely be able to return to work within a few days, but you should avoid any strenuous activities that could raise your pulse and blood pressure for at least two weeks.

Ask your surgeon about a schedule for follow-up visits, limits on your activities, precautions you should take, and when you can return to your normal activities, including exercising.

Help at home
Depending on the complexity of your explant surgery, you may need help with household chores, dressings, transportation etc. If you have concerns in any of these areas, please talk with your surgeon or family doctor before your explant surgery.

RESOURCES

Increase in rare cancer linked to breast implants
Increase in Australian cancer cases linked to breast implants
What to know about the FDA warning about breast implants
Associated Medical Association – Breast implants linked to cancer
Link found between textured breast implants and rare cancer
The Medical Journal of Australia – Improving the safety of breast implants – implant associated lymphoedema
Textured breast implants pose greater risk of infection than smooth breast implants
Medical Press – Research reveals which breast implants pose the greatest risk of implant-associated cancer
ABC News Contaminated breast implants linked to rare cancer, plastic surgeons warn
New Macquarie University Health Sciences Centre research links rare cancer to breast implant infection
Australian Society of Aesthetic Surgeons – Breast Augmentation 14 Point Plan
14 Point Plan – Professor Anand Deva
Safer Breast Implants