Symmastia is when your breasts stick together, with little or no space between them. Instead, there’s a band of skin, fat, and tissue across the space. This condition can be mild or severe. Sometimes the space is hard to see.
What Causes It?
It depends on the kind of symmastia you have. Congenital symmastia. You have this condition from birth. It’s very rare, and doctors don’t know why it happens.
Acquired or iatrogenic. This kind is also rare, but more common than the congenital one. It’s usually a problem after breast surgery to make them bigger or fix them. It can happen when breast implants are too close together, especially if they’re too wide for your body. There’s a higher chance if you’ve had many breast surgeries before.
Sometimes it happens because of a wrong cut during the surgery. Because your breast doesn’t have a natural place for an implant, surgeons have to make a place for it. They’ll probably use your own tissue from another part of your body. If that doesn’t work, they could try animal tissue, usually from a pig. The place should be the same size or slightly bigger than the implant. If it’s too big and the doctor cuts the wrong way, the two places can join together to make one big open place.
How Do You Treat It?
Symmastia doesn’t usually cause any serious health issues. You may want to fix it to look better, though. Many surgeries for both kinds involve attaching skin to the bone in the middle of your chest to make the space again. Your surgeon may also have to make new places for implants or change them with smaller ones.
You can treat the congenital kind, but your surgeon has to fix both the shape and size of your breasts. Experts don’t agree on which surgery is best. Different surgeries may work better for different people. In general, you shouldn’t have surgery until your breasts stop growing.
This method works well for this problem. It has three parts. The first part is to remove a little bit of breast tissue with a machine or a knife. Then, the doctor connects the skin near the middle of the chest to the bone. Next, they press the area to help it heal. You’ll also have to wear a tight bra for some time. Some problems that might happen are marks on the skin and breasts that are not the same size or shape.
If you want to have this operation, talk to another doctor first. When you choose a doctor, make sure they have done many operations like this before.
How to Avoid It
If you want to change how your breasts look, you and your doctor can do some things to prevent this problem. Talk about the kind and size of the thing they will put in your breast and if it fits your body. Also check that your doctor has a lot of experience with these operations. This will make it less likely that they will do something wrong.
Symmastia is when the breasts join together in the middle of the chest and look like one big breast. Some people are born with symmastia (congenital) and some people get it after surgery, like when they have breast implants. Symmastia is not very common.
Why symmastia happens after breast implant surgery
Symmastia happens when the skin and muscle between the breasts and the bone in the middle of the chest (sternum) separate and the two spaces that hold the breast implants become one space. Then, the breast implants move to the middle and make one big breast. This can make you feel uncomfortable or hurt.
Symmastia can happen after breast implant surgery if, during a mastectomy, doctors take out too much tissue near the sternum. It can also happen if the breast implants are too big. Bigger implants need a bigger space and put more pressure on the skin that has to stick to the sternum to keep the breast implant in place.
How to fix symmastia
Fixing symmastia can be hard and need more than one surgery.
Usually, to fix symmastia, surgery means taking out the breast implants and putting in new (usually smaller) implants. Your plastic surgeon also stitches the skin that has separated from the sternum back together and changes the spaces in the chest that hold the implants, often making them stronger with a skin-like product (made mostly of protein) or mesh.
Your plastic surgeon might suggest fixing symmastia with flap surgery. After taking out your breast implants, your plastic surgeon puts in flaps of tissue from another part of your body.