What You Need to Know About Breast Implant Maintenance

According to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, in 2014, breast augmentation was the second most popular surgical procedure in the United States. Of those surgeries, 80% of the breast implants were made of silicone and 20% were saline.

While implants have enhanced millions of women's looks, we've also heard horror stories from surgeries gone wrong. However, when breast augmentation surgery is performed by a highly skilled Board Certified plastic surgeon, such as Dr. Yuly Gorodisky, most of these implanted devices look and perform perfectly.

Below, are some answers to commonly asked questions about breast implants.

1. When should a woman replace her breast implants?

Under certain circumstances, it's necessary to replace implants. For example, saline implants need to be replaced when they deflate. If saline implants are intact, they generally don't need to be replaced.

If the scar tissue capsule that forms around the breast implants shrinks and squeezes the implant (capsular contracture), causing hardening of the breasts, it often requires surgery to correct it.

We recommend replacing older silicone implants if they rupture or harden. However, it can be difficult to detect a ruptured implant. So, MRIs are recommended to evaluate the integrity of the shell.

The newer silicone implants made in 2006 or later, have low capsular contracture and rupture rates, but the FDA recommends that patients begin MRI studies approximately 3 years from the augmentation surgery.

2. If they seem fine, should they be replaced after a certain number of years?

Usually, if there are no existing problems, patients are usually advised to leave their implants alone.

3. Do saline implants leak?

Saline implants generally leak if they are left in place for 20 to 25 years. But, if the implant looks good and remains intact, there is no reason to replace it unless there are other issues, such as rippling or a desire to change the size.

4. How often should women have their implants checked?

We advise our patients to have their implants checked once a year. We also suggest annual breast exams and for women over 45, they should have the recommended breast cancer screenings, such as mammograms.

For more advice about breast implants, contact our Oxnard plastic surgeon, Dr. Yuly Gorodisky. Call today to schedule your consultation.

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