Breast Implant Revision Surgery: What Do I Need to Know?

This is a guest post by Michelle in Denver, who had a breast augmentation many years ago. She is now considering a revision surgery, so she did some research on the subject.

Do breast implants really need to be replaced every ten years?

Breast implants do not have an expiration date and there is no requirement to have them replaced at ten years. However, according to the Institute of Medicine, the average life expectancy of a breast implant is 16 years. FDA studies of silicone breast implants suggest that most implants last 7-12 years. However, some breast implants clearly last much longer. So, there really is no definitive recommendation. Speaking for myself, I am at 25 years and counting. My breast implants have far outlasted my marriage!

According to an article by The National Research Center for Women & Families, “the likelihood of rupture increases every year.” But as long as the breast implant is intact and you are not experiencing any complications, there is no real need to have a breast implant revision.

After 25 years, I am not experiencing any major complications or significant positioning problems, even after two pregnancies and breastfeeding, however I am considering breast implant replacement. I want to be proactive and avoid any complications, but I also want to benefit from new technology and use this opportunity to achieve a new look.

What is Breast Implant Revision?

Breast implant revision involves the removal or replacement of your current breast implants. Plastic surgeons recommend an evaluation and possibly replacement of breast implants around 15 years after breast augmentation. Evidence shows that some time between 10 and 20 years after surgery, most women will either be experiencing some type of complication or desire an improved appearance of the breast. Over time, positioning changes may occur due to accidents or natural causes. Breast implant revision surgery can resolve these concerns and provide a more satisfactory breast appearance.

Some of the common reasons one might consider a breast implant revision surgery are as follows:

  1. Encapsulation, i.e. capsular contracture, which consists of excessive scar tissue development that can place pressure on the implant
  2. Folding or wrinkling of the implant
  3. Improper implant positioning
  4. Implant rupture or leakage
  5. Desire to improve breast appearance
  6. Desire to use improved implant technology
  7. Aging and potential weakening of the breast implants

A revision surgery offers the patient a chance to alter shape and size; after all, it is a whole new decade and your lifestyle is quite likely different than when you originally chose to get breast implants.

Got a question or comment about Michelle’s post? Email Her

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