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Reasons for Breast Implant Revision

By The Landings Surgical Centre on November 04, 2012


New Brunswick Breast Implant RevisionMost women who have undergone breast augmentation will require breast implant revision. Typical breast implants can be expected to last for about 10 years. Over time, implants may harden, shift, or rupture. When faced with the need for secondary breast augmentation, it is vital to find a plastic surgeon experienced in breast implant revision. At The Landings Surgical Centre, we frequently perform breast implant removal and replacement surgery for patients from Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. Plastic surgeons Richard Bendor-Samuel and Louis Boileau have completed extensive training in breast augmentation and revision surgery. We welcome you to schedule a consultation at our practice in Halifax. In the meantime, here are some common reasons for breast implant revision.

Change in Size

The most common cosmetic reason for breast implant revision is to change the size of the implants. For our patients from Nova Scotia and New Brunswick, breast augmentation often produces an ideal cosmetic result the first time around. But a small percentage of patients wish they had chosen a different implant size. In the vast majority of cases, these patients wish they had gone with a slightly larger implant size.

Ruptured Implant

Both saline and silicone implants may leak, deflate, or rupture. Ruptured saline implants are noticeable immediately. The saline will quickly leak from the implant and cause the breast to decrease in size; since it is typical for one implant to deflate before its pair, one breast will be smaller than the other. A ruptured silicone implant can go unnoticeable for some time; this is why woman with silicone breast implants should have regular tests, usually an ultrasound, to ensure there is no leakage.  Ruptured saline and silicone implants can create painful symptoms such as:

  • Numbness and swelling in the breast
  • Pain and tingling of the breast
  • Burning in the breast
  • Redness of the breast tissue
  • Hardening of the breast tissue
  • Hard knots around the implant, possibly extending to the underarm

Capsular Contracture

Capsular contracture is a condition in which the tissue around the breast implant hardens. The hardening of the tissue is caused by the immune system's reaction to a foreign body within the breast. Capsular contraction can lead to asymmetrical breasts and can be very painful. The only treatment for capsular contracture is surgical revision. Symptoms of capsular contracture include:

  • Hardened breast tissue
  • Painful breast tissue
  • Asymmetrical, misshaped breasts

Poor Placement or Change in Breast Shape

Unfortunately, some women may not be happy with the placement of their breast implants. Implants may also shift over time and require revision. In order to correct implant placement, secondary augmentation is necessary. Breast implant revision may involve tightening the implant pocket, or moving the implant so it is placed under the muscle.

Symmastia

Symmastia is a rare condition in which the breast implants are so close together it may look like you have one breast instead of two. Symmastia may result when too much tissue is taken out of the cleavage area. Symmastia can only be repaired with breast implant revision.

Schedule a Consultation

If you have breast implants you may not require breast implant revision now, but you will likely require revision at some point. We invite you to schedule a consultation with our experienced team at The Landings Surgical Centre to learn more about your options.

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JoAnne Reid, Nursing Director, The Landings Surgical Centre

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