If you’ve read about, researched or gotten breast implants, you’ve probably heard someone mention that you should have them replaced every 10 years. But is it really necessary? For most patients, probably not, but there are a few reasons why you should replace your implants, according to Dr. Mona Alqulali M.D., FACOG, Ph.D.
Your saline implant or implants have deflated. If you have saline implants and one of them springs a leak, you’ll know pretty quickly. Your breast will rapidly decrease in size, leaving one side noticeably different from the other. In order to return symmetry to your breasts, you’ll need to replace your damaged implant. While you’re scheduling your replacement surgery, it’s probably a good idea to replace both sides at the same time. You may also want to consider upgrading to a silicone gel implant at this time, too.
Your silicone gel implant or implants have ruptured. While this very thought causes fear and panic for lots of women, it’s important to say a few things about silicone implants. Silicone implants are very safe and have been declared safe by the FDA. In most cases, if your silicone breast implant develops a hole, the silicone inside of the implant will not leak out because it's formulated to stay together. This means a leak will be less noticeable in your silicone implant than a saline implant.
It’s also important to remember that the silicone used in breast implants is a safe, medical-grade silicone product that will not negatively affect the body in any way. If you think you have a hole or one is detected during a mammogram (it is recommended silicone gel implant patients have mammograms at regular intervals to check implant quality), it is time to replace your silicone gel implants.
Your breast implants feel hard. If your breasts are hard or uncomfortable, you may have developed a reaction to your implant known as capsular constriction. Capsular constriction occurs when the normal scar tissue that develops around your implant hardens. When this scar tissue hardens, it constricts and makes your implant feel hard and uncomfortable. If you experience capsular constriction, your implants should be replaced and surrounding scar tissue should be removed.
Your implants no longer look good. Older implant sometimes develop rippling or wrinkling that is often visible in your breasts. It is also key to remember that even though you have implants, your breasts will still change with weight loss or gain, pregnancy, and breastfeeding. These changes usually impact how your breasts and implants look over time.
You just want change. You may simply want to change out your breast implants because you want to increase (or decrease) the size of your breasts or want a more natural-looking implant like those available on the market today.
Learn more about breast implants and your options for replacement by scheduling a breast surgery consultation with Dr. Alqulali at 888-716-0559.