More women than ever are undergoing breast implant removal and/or replacement procedures, for various reasons. In fact, any woman with or considering getting breast implants should assume that they will need removing and/or replacing at some stage. Dr Eddie Cheng, Specialist Plastic Surgeon based in Brisbane, QLD performs many removal and replacement procedures each year and we’ll be having him on our closed Facebook group next month for a Facebook Live to talk about it but in the meantime he answered some of our questions.
Why have Breast Implant Revision Procedures?
Dr Cheng says there are various reasons why a woman may have breast implant revision surgery. “Breast implants don’t last a lifetime, however, it varies from person to person. Implants will need to be replaced at some stage, however, the reasons for revision surgery varies and may include complications such as capsular contracture, gel rupture and sometimes size changes.”
Other reasons for implant removal and replacement may include:
- Patient preference – e.g. a change in breast implant size, shape or brand and removal of breast implants all together.
- Complications such as capsular contracture, rupture, deflation, rippling, calcification and others.
- Incorrect sizing and positioning of breast implants
- Normal ageing of the implant – it is generally accepted that the longer you have your implants the more likely you are to experience capsular contracture or ruptured breast implants.
If you suspect you need breast implant revision surgery due to a complication you should consult your plastic surgeon as soon as possible. Dr Cheng says it’s not always obvious that an implant needs replacing. For example, he says with rupture or deflation, “Saline implants will deflate immediately and you will subsequently notice a change in breast size immediately. The saline is then absorbed by your body.
A ruptured silicone implant on the other hand may be a ‘silent rupture’ and may not be evident immediately. In this instance an ultrasound and/or MRI is required to assess the integrity of your breast implants. If a rupture is confirmed you will need to have the implant surgically removed along with any scar tissue and in most cases patients elect to have their breast implants replaced.”
Capsular contracture is one of the most common reasons for breast implant removal and replacement. Dr Cheng says, “Capsular contracture is a tightening of the tissue or capsule that normally forms around the implant. It is more common with subglandular breast implant placement. The symptoms can range from breast firmness and mild discomfort, to pain, distortion of breast shape, firmness or hardening of the breasts and breast implants, and/or displacement of the implant itself.”
Women with breast implants should expect to monitor their breasts for the rest of their lives. If you notice any breast changes or develop any symptoms make sure you contact your plastic surgeon straight away.
In his Facebook Live on 1st May Dr Cheng will cover FAQs like:
How should I monitor the health of my breast implants?
How often should I be getting my breasts implants checked?
Can I still have a mammogram with breast implants?
What are some of the signs that my breast implants need changing?
What information do I need to prepare for my breast implant revision consultation?
How can I access my breast implant information?
What is involved in breast implant removal and revision surgery? What can my plastic surgeon do to improve the result of my revision surgery?
What are the recovery milestones after breast implant removal and revision surgery?
If you have any further questions or concerns about breast implant removal and or revision surgery be sure to tune in to Facebook Live with Plastic Surgery Hub and Dr Eddie Cheng on our Plastic Surgery for Aussie Chicks Closed Facebook Group Wednesday, 1 May at 7.45pm. Join the group and stay tuned!