Modern breast implants are designed and manufactured to be incredibly strong and durable. However, like any other medical device, they may need to be replaced at some point. The procedure to replace one or both breast implants is known as breast augmentation revision or simply breast revision surgery.
Here, Dr. Lloyd Landsman, respected Long Island breast surgeon, reveals some of the signs that a woman may need breast augmentation revision.
One or both breasts look noticeably flatter.
Although the risk of a saline or silicone implant rupturing is low, it is still possible. Implant rupture tends to be more noticeable in saline implants because the liquid saline leaks rapidly out of the shell and causes the breast to quickly flatten or “deflate.”
Because of its viscosity, silicone tends to leak slowly out of the implant shell and may not cause any noticeable change in breast shape or size. An MRI is more likely to show signs of a rupture, which is why women with silicone implants are encouraged to have regular imaging tests.
When an implant ruptures, it must be removed or replaced as soon as possible.
The breasts feel hard or look distorted.
Another possible complication of breast augmentation is capsular contracture, in which the body forms scar tissue around one or both implants. As a result, the breasts feel hard and may look distorted. Revision surgery is needed to revise the implant pocket so it can better hold the implant; sometimes the original implants are removed, too.
A change in weight has altered the appearance of the implants.
Significant changes in body weight — either losing or gaining weight — can alter the appearance of the implants.
If a woman loses a significant amount of weight, what were once proportional-looking implants may suddenly look too large or unbalanced compared to the rest of her frame. On the contrary, a woman that gains a significant amount of weight may notice her breast skin stretches and the implants look saggy.
Breast revision surgery can replace the original implants with a new pair that is more proportional to her body, and include a breast lift component to reposition sagging breasts.
A woman desires a different breast size.
Sometimes the most important sign that a woman needs revision surgery is that she desires a different breast size. Perhaps as she has aged, she desires a smaller breast size to fit with changes in her lifestyle. Or she feels that she didn’t go “big enough” during her primary surgery and wants to remedy that. Dr. Landsman will work with every patient individually to determine a plan of action to achieve the desired aesthetic results.
Advances in technique and a widening range of implant shapes, sizes and materials give women more choices than ever for revision surgery. If you believe you may want or need revision surgery, Dr. Landsman is happy to discuss your options during consultation. Please call or email our practice today to make an appointment.