Breast implant replacement or removal surgery

A breast implant is a prosthesis used to alter the size and shape of a woman's breasts (known as breast augmentation, breast enlargement, mammoplasty enlargement, augmentation mammoplasty ) for cosmetic reasons, to reconstruct the breast (e.g. After a mastectomy or to correct congenital chest wall deformities), or as an aspect of male-to-female gender transition. Breast implants are a synthetic product and they are not intended to last forever. In the case that they fail or get old, they will have to be removed or replaced.

Breast augmentation revision surgery is necessary when a patient experiences a problem with her implants or changes her preferences. Breast implant do not have an expiration date, but it is nonetheless prudent to prepare for revision surgery in the future. To ensure continued satisfaction from your breast augmentation, it is best to partner with a cosmetic surgeon that you trust.

The surgery

Breast implant removal is a relatively straightforward procedure. the implant is typically approached through the same surgical incisions as your original breast augmentation. surgery may be as short as one hour, but this will vary depending on your particular condition.

After breast implant exchange

Removing breast implants carries a possibility for an undesirable aesthetic outcome, especially if you’ve had them for several years. When breast augmentation is first performed, the skin stretches to accommodate the implants. If they are removed, it is likely that your skin will not shrink back to a satisfactory state.

While it is possible that your breasts will return to their pre-augmentation appearance, most patients will benefit from another cosmetic procedure. your plastic surgeon may recommend a breast lift to tighten the tissues and excess skin. to meet your appearance goals, he or she may also recommend a different implant size or different implant type.

Frequently asked questions?

What is involved?

  1. During your pre-operative consultation you will be able to see breast implants of various shapes and sizes.
  2. This will give you the best possible idea of how you may look following your breast implant replacement operation.
  3. Most surgeons will use your old scar to remove your old implant.
  4. If you have decided to increase the size of your existing breast implant your surgeon may need to perform an internal release of the breast capsule surrounding your breast implant (capsulectomy).
  5. This will make more space for the implant and can improve the appearance of the cleavage area.
  6. Breast implant removal or replacement usually takes between 1-2 hours to complete.
  7. Surgery is normally performed under a general anesthetic and you will need to stay in hospital overnight.

Reasons for breast implant revision or removal surgery

Patients may decide to exchange their breast implants or remove them completely. This may be due to a complication, unrelated medical problem or change in preferences. Several years after surgery, you may decide that your lifestyle has changed and your breast implants need to be removed or reduced in size. Some possible reasons for breast augmentation revision/removal are below:

  • wrinkling of the implant
  • breast implant rupture
  • scar tissue around breast implant
  • implant out of position
  • unnatural nipple position
  • need for scar revision
  • reduction of areola
  • breast sagging
  • change in size preferences
  • change to Silicone breast implants

Frequently asked questions?

Can breast implants be removed?

Breast implant removal is relatively simple. The procedure may take as little as one hour and the same incisions are typically used to access the implant. However, there is potential for a poor aesthetic outcome, especially if your implants were placed many years ago and the level of skin elasticity has decreased. The breast lift is one solution that may be able to mitigate the negative outcomes of breast implant removal.


  1. Most people will be able to carry out light duties the day after your operation.
  2. Strenuous activity, however, should be avoided for at least 4 to 5 weeks.
  3. Most people will be able to return to work within 2 weeks although you may need slightly longer if your job involves performing physical duties.

Possible side effects

  1. The possible complications and side effects following surgery are similar to those of breast enlargement.
  2. As with any operation there is a higher risk of complications such as capsular contraction with any corrective surgery.


  1. An improved cosmetic appearance and feel of the breasts.
  2. Correction of any physical symptoms the patient may be suffering from, such as pain from capsular contracture.
  3. An enhanced self esteem and improved body image when the distorted appearance of the breast is corrected.

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