Breast implants eventually need to be replaced or removed. Breast Implant Revision Surgery is usually a simple procedure, but the trick is to know when you should do it. The Plastic Surgeons at Cassileth Plastic Surgery in Beverly Hills are breast surgery specialists who are dedicated to educating patients about their breast implant options. If you are unhappy with your current implants, we can discuss changing the size of the implants or type of implants in order to achieve the look you want.
Breast implant removal without replacement is addressed in our breast implant removal page. You can learn more about the different types, sizes, and placement of breast implants on our breast augmentation page.
Women sometimes seek breast implant replacement because they would like a different size implant or different type of implant. If they have lost weight and now have a smaller frame, they may want a smaller implant for a more proportionate figure. If they have gained weight, they may want a larger implant or even liposuction around the bra area or a breast reduction to reduce the amount of natural breast tissue. The aging process can also change the appearance of breasts after augmentation and many women seek a breast implant replacement along with a breast lift procedure in order to restore perkiness.
The type of implants you have also bring up specific replacement concerns:
Many patients ask us when they should replace their implants with new implants. The truth is that problem-free implants do not really need to be replaced. If your implant is saline and the breast size and shape are normal, then the implant is intact. As the implant gets older, the chance of rupture gets higher, so it's good to put a plan in place in case the implant ruptures unexpectedly. If the saline breast implant does rupture, it releases the saline fill into the body. The saline is a common sterile IV solution used for rehydration and is similar to salt water, so it is not a cause for concern. If your implants are twenty years old and still intact, come in for a consultation to discuss a replacement plan.
There are actually fifty or more different types of silicone breast implants, all filled with different types of silicone or silicone gel, that have been approved by the FDA over the years, many of them since recalled. All silicone implants over twenty years old should be replaced, as they are at high risk for rupture.
Soon after a breast implant is placed, the body forms a natural layer of scar tissue around it called the capsule. While ruptured implants can sometimes sit harmlessly in the capsule, the silicone of an older, gel-type implant will become incorporated into the capsule when ruptured (intracapsular rupture), and can travel outside of the capsule and into the lymph nodes (extracapsular rupture).2 Newer implants should also be replaced if they are ruptured, or if the implant style has been recalled.1 Textured implants, specifically the Allergan 410 implant, carry a tiny but real risk of Breast-Implant-related anaplastic large cell lymphoma (BIA-ALCL) which is a type of lymphoma (not breast cancer) and should also be replaced sooner than later. The capsule should be checked and possibly removed at the same time.
Double-Board-Certified Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon and Breast & Body Specialist
Contact Cassileth Plastic Surgery about Breast Implant Replacement in Los Angeles, Beverly Hills, Santa Monica, and beyond.
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A Board-Certified Plastic Surgeon Specializing in Breast and Body Procedures in Los Angeles
Board-Certified Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon, Breast Specialist, and Direct-to-Implant Breast Reconstruction Inventor
1U.S Food & Drug Administration. The FDA Requests Allergan Voluntarily Recall Natrelle BIOCELL Textured Breast Implants and Tissue Expanders from the Market to Protect Patients: FDA Safety Communication. Available: https://www.fda.gov/medical-devices/safety-communications/fda-requests-allergan-voluntarily-recall-natrelle-biocell-textured-breast-implants-and-tissue. Accessed February 15, 2021
2 Mayo Clinic. If silicone breast implants rupture, what are the possible complications? Available: https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/womens-health/expert-answers/breast-implants/faq-20058454. Accessed February 15, 2021
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