Implant Revision Surgery — Do You Need It?

Nothing lasts forever.

That adage applies to breast implants, too. When a woman makes the important decision to have her breasts augmented, she also needs to consider the probability that she will need at least one revision surgery to replace her implants. Revision surgery isn’t really the right name for these procedures with Dr. Kearney; it would be better to think of them as replacement surgery.

Implant lifespans are increasing with better manufacturing standards and the materials used. Still, implants will need replacing. Now, there are cases where implants last for 30 years, without leakage and without capsular contraction. But this is the exception. Most surgeons estimate the average implant lifespan in the range of 10 to 15 years. Leakage or rupture is more prevalent at that point.

Newer options such as gummy bear implants and the Ideal Implant (with layered construction and two pockets for saline solution) could last longer, but their relatively recent addition to implant options means there isn’t a 20-year study cycle on these options yet.

Beyond replacing a ruptured or damaged implant, there are other reasons to replace your implants:

  • You seek to change the size.
  • Capsular contraction around the implant needs to be addressed.
  • You want to correct or change the outcome from your original augmentation.
  • You have had weight fluctuation and the tissue surrounding the implant has changed.

For revision procedures, Dr. Kearney will consult with you about your implant revision options. Maybe the implants need to be re-positioned, maybe the breast tissue needs to be lifted. The goal is to feel as good, or even better, about your revision surgery as you did with your original augmentation.

The revision procedure is usually only about one quarter as painful as the original surgery and recovery, unless there is extensive capsular contraction. The same incision location from the original surgery can be used. Sometimes, though, patients seek to move the implants from in front of the breast muscle to behind it. Obviously, this can’t be done through the original incision.

So, whether you think you may have leakage or contracture in your original implants, or whether you wish to change their size, shape, or position, set up a consultation with Dr. Kearney. His expertise will ensure your satisfaction with your implants. Call us at (858) 677-9352 to make your appointment.

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