High quality, modern breast implants do not have an expiry date, but they are not guaranteed to last forever. On average, both silicone and saline implants could last somewhere between 10 and 20 years.
But in some cases, the breast implant removal or replacement cosmetic surgery may have to be performed sooner because the patient has either developed complications, or wants to remove or change them due to her personal cosmetic preferences. Nearly one in five women have their breast implants removed or replaced within 10 years.
Board certified plastic surgeon Dr. Eugene Kim provides procedures for the breast, body and face to patients in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, Santa Monica, West Hollywood, CA, and surrounding communities.
Need for Implant Removal or Replacement
Breast implant removal or replacement may become necessary in the following situations.
Implants have hardened
A woman may develop capsular contracture at some point after her breast augmentation plastic surgery. In this case, the scar tissue enveloping the implant will become hardened, and may cause tightness or discomfort in the chest. Some women may also develop undesirable cosmetic changes to the breast appearance.
Rupture of saline implants
A hole or tear in the saline implant shell may cause it to deflate. This will result in leakage of the saline solution, which will naturally get reabsorbed by your body. Once all the saline has leaked out, the deflation will become quite obvious to the patient. Saline implant rupture risks will increase over time, but are rarely reported in the first few years.
Silicone implant rupture
Silicone gel is highly cohesive, so if the silicone implant ruptures, chances are that the gel may not move out of the implant or the surrounding scar tissue. As a result, you may not even notice the rupture or experience any symptoms. Silicone implant rupture will be noticeable during an MRI. While silicone implants last for a long time, some may develop ruptures in 10 year or more on average.
Implant palpability and rippling
Rippling in your breast implant may occur at any stage, and the ripples or wrinkles will begin to show on your breast skin. When you touch your breast, you may be able to feel the palpability and ripples. Once this condition occurs, most women like to consider breast implant removal or replacement.
Your breast tissue will continue to sag with the natural aging process even after your breast augmentation surgery. Gravity, weight fluctuations, pregnancy, and other factors may also contribute to sagging breasts. This may cause your implant to move from its original position, or one breast may hang lower than the other. Nipples may also point in a divergent direction in this condition.
At the time of initial consultation for your primary breast augmentation surgery, a dedicated breast implant surgeon will inform you about the possibility of implant removal or replacement in the long run – at least once in your lifetime. You should make an informed choice after carefully considering this possibility.
Cosmetic surgeon Dr. Eugene Kim receives patients from Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, Santa Monica, West Hollywood, CA, and nearby areas for various plastic surgery procedures.
Click here see more plastic surgery procedures and treatments performed by Board Certified Plastic Surgeon, Dr. Eugene Kim on patients in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, West Hollywood, Santa Monica and surrounding areas or call 310-271-6996 to schedule a consultation.