Virtual Appointments - Now Available!

Learn More

Capsulotomy Or Capsulectomy? What’s The Difference?

By: Dr. Christopher Khorsandi


While most of us are familiar with breast augmentation, the removal of breast implants is discussed far less often. However, thousands of women have their breast implants removed each year for various reasons. Depending on why a patient might be facing breast implant removal, her surgeon will likely perform either a capsulectomy or capsulotomy. Experienced board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Christopher Khorsandi and the expert team at VIP Plastic Surgery in Las Vegas, NV understand the often sensitive and emotional nature of breast implant removal and are committed to providing the highest level of personalized care to help patients achieve their ideal cosmetic outcome and an overall healthy result. Learn more about Las Vegas breast implant removal here, including how capsulectomy and capsulotomy compare.

Who needs breast implant removal?

There are a number of scenarios that may prompt a woman to want or need her breast implants removed. While complications with breast augmentation are relatively rare, they can occur and may lead to the need for implant replacement, removal, or revision. Additionally, some women simply have a change in personal preference and desire a more natural look and/or a different type or size of implant. Some of the most common reasons for breast implant removal include:

  • Capsular contracture
  • Implant rupture
  • Implant displacement (bottoming out)
  • Breast implant illness
  • Change in personal taste
  • Desire a different size or type of implant
  • Prefer a more natural look

During your initial consultation for breast implant replacement or removal in Las Vegas, Dr. Khorsandi will thoroughly evaluate and discuss your concerns, examine your breasts, and explain all of your options in detail. Depending on your symptoms and the reason you may want or need implant removal, Dr. Khorsandi will likely recommend either capsulotomy or capsulectomy.

What is a capsulotomy?

When breast implants are placed, the body naturally forms a protective pouch of scar tissue around the implant. This capsule helps to keep the implant in place and gives the breast a more natural look and feel. In most cases, the capsule remains relatively soft. However, in some cases, the capsule of scar tissue becomes hardened and begins to constrict the implant. This condition, known as capsular contracture, can result in pain, asymmetry, and other complications.

In less severe cases of capsular contracture, Dr. Khorsandi may recommend capsulotomy. This procedure involves removing a portion of the capsule and/or opening up the capsule to create more space for the implant. Patients may choose to have their implants removed, re-inserted, or replaced during capsulotomy surgery.

What is capsulectomy?

In more severe cases of capsular contracture, a capsulectomy may be more appropriate. During capsulectomy surgery, Dr. Khorsandi will remove both the implant as well as the entirety of the capsule and scar tissue. Again, patients may choose to have a new implant placed with capsulectomy, though recurrent capsular contracture is a possibility.

Another form of capsulectomy is the en bloc capsulectomy, which involves removing the implant and capsular as a fully intact unit. This technique is typically reserved for cases when the integrity of the implant has been compromised and/or BIA-ALCL (a form of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma sometimes associated with textured implants) is suspected. By removing the capsule and implant together, the chances of contamination and other complications are minimized.

What will my breasts look like after breast implant removal?

It is completely understandable to have concerns about how your breasts may look after implant removal or replacement. Dr. Khorsandi believes that every woman deserves to feel comfortable and confident in her own skin and will take ample time to formulate a surgical plan that will help each patient achieve their ideal goals. Oftentimes, particularly when breast implants are removed or replaced with smaller implants, a breast lift is needed to remove excess skin and restore the breasts to a perkier, higher position. A fat transfer can also be useful in creating a more attractive contour and achieving symmetry between the breasts.

Restore a stunning, natural figure with breast implant removal in Las Vegas, NV

Whether you are experiencing complications with your breast implants or simply desire a change, our experienced and award-winning team can help. Call VIP Plastic Surgery today to schedule your private in-office or online consultation with internationally recognized board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Christopher Khorsandi, and learn more about the life-changing benefits of Las Vegas breast implant replacement or removal.

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.