Breast AugmentationBreast Revision

What Happens If Breast Implants Aren’t Replaced?

By March 5, 2024 No Comments
Breast augmentation is a popular surgery for women who want to feel comfortable and confident in their bodies. The recent trends show patients have chosen appropriately sized breast implants that suit their frames and highlight the organic curves of their figures. There are many questions patients should ask before their breast augmentation. Most questions will primarily focus on the pre-operative process, the surgery, and the immediate aftermath. However, patients should inquire about the long-term conditions of the implants and possible revision surgery. Before patients decide to undergo plastic surgery, they want to know that it will be worth the time, effort, and expense they spend on the procedure. Questions for patients to ask their surgeon about their procedure include: How long will the surgical results last? Do the implants need to be replaced? Are there any risks associated with implants that remain in place for years? Do other options exist besides replacing the breast implants? Patients can trust a board-certified plastic surgeon to address these and other concerns.  

What Makes Implant Replacement Necessary?

These are a few conditions patients can develop that may require implant replacement. Capsular Contract Most cases of capsular contraction are mild and don’t require treatment. A scar tissue barrier that forms around the implants is natural and can be beneficial. If an individual is prone to scar tissue development, this can lead to thicker tissue that begins to harden and contract around the implants. Severe cases can cause the implants to feel overly firm and produce an unnatural look. Rupture/Leakage A patient with saline implants will likely notice a rupture or leak. Saline-filled implants will shrink if the interior fluid leaks, leading to a flat, deflated appearance. The sterile salt water at the core of these implants shouldn’t be a concern since the body can absorb and dispose of this solution. Leaks and ruptures of silicone gel-filled implants are more difficult to detect. Doctors recommend regular scans to ensure the implants are in good condition. If a leak does occur, the gel will likely hold its shape and cling to itself, preventing the silicone from seeping out of the chest. Change In Implant Position Or Shape Over time, breast implants can rotate or move in the chest. The shape of the implants can also alter. These changes can lead to a disproportionate or asymmetrical appearance.  

How Long Do Breast Implants Last?

The general belief is that breast implants will last for ten years. While this may be the average number of years patients have their implants before undergoing revision surgery to replace them, ten years doesn’t necessarily speak to the lifespan of the implants. Some patients have had their implants for twenty years or more. As long as the implants are in good condition and the patient isn’t experiencing any difficulties, the implants can remain in place.  

The Next Step: Breast Revision

Patients may choose to have revision breast surgery if they experience issues with their implants. During a revision procedure, the surgeon can remove and replace the implants with a similar size or larger ones. If the patient doesn’t want to replace the implants, they can choose to have a breast lift. This procedure will remove any skin stretched by the implants and tighten the remaining tissue. Revision procedures are excellent ways to regain the youthful, feminine figure the implants first produced.  

Conclusion

The lifespan of breast implants varies. Some patients may need replacement implants after ten years. Other patients have gone two decades with the same implants. If the patient doesn’t experience any issues, breast implants can remain in place for many years. If you’re interested in revision breast surgery or breast augmentation, the Gallery of Cosmetic Surgery can help. Call us at 425-775-3561 or fill out our online contact form to learn more about our procedures.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
ABOUT DR. JONOV
ABOUT DR. JONOV
Dr. Craig Jonov specializes in plastic surgery of the face, breast, and body and has decades of experience providing the top surgical and non-surgical cosmetic services.