Quantifying shape changes of silicone breast implants in a murine model using in vivo micro-CT

Emily Anderson, Egon Perilli, Colin Carati, Karen Reynolds

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    1 Citation (Scopus)


    A major complication of silicone breast implants is the formation of a capsule around the implant known as capsular contracture which results in the distortion of the implant. Recently, a mouse model for studying capsular contracture was examined using micro-computed tomography (micro-CT), however, only qualitative changes were reported. The aim of this study was to develop a quantitative method for comparing the shape changes of silicone implants using in vivo micro-CT. Mice were bilaterally implanted with silicone implants and underwent ionizing radiation to induce capsular contracture. On day 28 post-surgery mice were examined in vivo using micro-CT. The reconstructed cross-section images were visually inspected to identify distortion. Measurements were taken in 2D and 3D to quantify the shape of the implants in the normal (n = 11) and distorted (n = 5) groups. The degree of anisotropy was significantly higher in the distorted implants in the transaxial view (0.99 vs. 1.19, p = 0.002) and the y-axis lengths were significantly shorter in the sagittal (9.27 mm vs. 8.55 mm, p = 0.015) and coronal (9.24 mm vs. 8.76 mm, p = 0.031) views, indicating a deviation from the circular cross-section and shortening of the long axis. The 3D analysis revealed a significantly lower average thickness (sphere-fitting method) in distorted implants (6.86 mm vs. 5.49 mm, p = 0.002), whereas the volume and surface area did not show significant changes. Statistically significant differences between normal and distorted implants were found in 2D and 3D using distance measurements performed via micro-CT. This objective analysis method can be useful for a range of studies involving deformable implants using in vivo micro-CT.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1447-1452
    Number of pages6
    JournalJournal of Biomedical Materials Research Part B: Applied Biomaterials
    Issue number6
    Publication statusPublished - Aug 2017


    • breast implant
    • capsular contracture
    • micro-CT
    • quantitative
    • shape
    • silicone


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