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How Long Do Breast Implants Really Last?

Many women like to get San Antonio breast augmentation with implants, but many wonder how long they’ll last. While most breast implants last for many years, they don’t usually last forever. At some point, you may need a breast revision to replace your implants.

Below is more information about breast implants and their longevity.

Average Duration of Breast Implants

Breast implants don’t ‘expire,’ but they aren’t guaranteed to last your entire lift. The typical saline or silicone implants can last from 10 to 20 years. However, many need to be removed sooner because of cosmetic problems or complications. As many as 20% of people need to have breast implants removed or replaced within 10 years.

When You May Need Removal or Replacement

The complications listed below may mean you need breast plant removal.

Hardening

Some breast enhancement patients develop capsular contracture. This also is known as hardened scar tissue around the implants. This can lead to pain, tightness, tenderness, and usual changes to the breasts.

A few women may have the hardening happen more than one time to the same implant.

Saline Rupture

If you have a slime implant that ruptures because of a hole or tear in the shell, it will start to deflate as a balloon would.

The saline in the implant will leak and be easily absorbed by the body. The leak may happen all at once or over a few days. The deflation will not be evident until the body absorbs all saline. The affected breast loses its shape and size and will look different from the other breast.

Silicone Rupture

Silicone implants have been known to rupture, too. However, silicone gel is thicker than saline. When one of these implants ruptures, the gel stays in the implant or the scar tissue around the implant. Because of this, silicone implants that rupture may not be noticed right away. That’s why these ruptures are often called ‘silent’ ruptures.

Many people don’t notice symptoms. When they do occur, they can include:

  • Hard knots
  • Tingling
  • Swelling
  • Numbness
  • Decreased breast size
  • Burning
  • Pain and tenderness
  • Changes in sensation
  • Uneven appearance in breasts

The rate of silicone rupture is unknown, but it could be between 2% and 12%. Some breast implants rupture immediately, while others can rupture between three and 10 years later.

Rippling and Palpability

Rippling occurs when the implants have ripples or wrinkles. Palpability means the ability to detect those wrinkles when you touch the breast. In a few cases, the changes can be seen when you look at the skin.

If you feel or see wrinkling in the breast implant, you may want to talk to your plastic surgeon about removing it.

Position Change

Breast implants will not stop your breasts from drooping as you get older. Gravity has effects over time. Weight loss or gain also can lead to sagging and stretching of your breasts.

Some women also notice that one breast is lower than the others. Or, the nipples could point in different directions than before.

If these changes concern you, a breast lift or implant replacement could be suitable options.

Implant Removal Process

Any board-certified plastic surgeon can remove breast implants. You can have a different surgeon remove them than the surgeon who did the first procedure.

During your consultation, the plastic surgeon you select will check the status of your implants and review your options. Depending on the preferences, your plastic surgeon can do the following:

Just removing the implant can lead to abnormalities such as dimpling, sagging, dimpling, asymmetry, or deflation.

That’s why your plastic surgeon may say you should replace your implants with different ones. Depending on the procedure, you could go home the same day, but recovery time differs.

Many people resume working after five days or so. However, it will be approximately six weeks until you can start lifting or exercising again.

Increasing Implant Longevity

A commonly cited reason to have implants removed is not liking the shape or size. It’s not unusual for our tastes to change over the years. One way to make your breast implants last is to pick a shape and size that you think you can live with for at least 10 years.

For best breast implant outcomes, choose your plastic surgeon carefully; follow your surgeon’s postoperative instructions, and have regular MRIs performed to check for ruptures.

Request a Breast Implant Consultation

Interested in a San Antonio breast augmentation? Dr. Scott J Farber or Dr. Amita Shah of Hill Country Plastic Surgery can help. They will consult with you for your San Antonio breast augmentation today. They’ll go over the options, your goals, and more to determine if you’re an ideal candidate for breast implants.

References

Breast Implant Safety. (n.d.). Accessed at https://www.webmd.com/beauty/breast-implant-safety#1

How Long Do Implants Last? (n.d.). Accessed at https://www.healthline.com/health/how-long-do-implants-last

 


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