Breast Implant Removal
Last year, over 235,000 women had breast augmentation surgery and over 40,000 had breast implant removal (ASPS statistics). While breast implants can enhance a woman’s figure, self-confidence, and sensuality, there are occasions when breast implant removal (explantation) is either desired or required.
The 3 most common reasons for breast implant removal surgery are: change in size or shape, implant leakage or rupture, and capsular contracture. These 3 reasons comprise over 75% of all implant removal surgery. Other, less common reasons for implant removal are implant wrinkling, infection, asymmetry, hematoma, seroma, sagging, scarring, health concerns, or diagnosis of breast cancer.
For implant removal surgery, IV sedation or general anesthesia is typically used. An incision is made either under the fold of the breast or around the areola. The capsule around the implant is incised (cut into) and the implant is carefully removed. If the implant is filled with saline, the surgeon may choose to deflate the implant to facilitate removal. If the implant is silicone-filled, it is inspected for any signs of damage before removal.
The capsule (scar tissue) that was present around the implant may also be removed (known as capsulectomy) if the implant is not going to be replaced, if it will be replaced in a different position (over versus under the muscle), if it will be replaced with a larger implant, or if it will be replaced with a breast implant of a different surface (textured versus smooth).
Other reasons for capsulectomy are silicone implant leakage, infection, or concerns about the clarity and accuracy of mammograms if the capsule is not removed. In many cases, part of the capsule is removed, and some is not. (The capsule adhering to the chest wall may be left in place.) This is known as a partial capsulectomy.
Implant removal surgery without capsulectomy may take about 30 minutes, and with capsulectomy it may take about an hour. Recovery is fairly quick. Most patients are back to everyday activities within a few days, and full activity within 2 to 3 weeks.
Phone: (972) 981-7940
Fax: (972) 981-7941
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