Reasons to Consider Breast Revision
There are three principal reasons why a woman would consider breast revision surgery.
First, she may be unsatisfied with the implant size or shape she originally selected. Sometimes after living with the implants for a few months, a woman decides that she wants a bigger or smaller pair, or that she would like to switch from saline to silicone implants (or vice versa) for a different look and feel.
The second reason why a woman may consider breast implant revision is because the effects of aging, pregnancy, breastfeeding or weight fluctuation have affected the results of her breast augmentation. Usually in that scenario a breast lift is performed at the time of breast revision to achieve optimal results.
The third reason why a woman may consider breast revision surgery is because she has experienced a complication with her implants.
Breast Implant Complications
The outer shell of a saline or silicone implant can develop a tear or hole, and the implant filling can leak out. In the case of a saline implant rupture, the body quickly absorbs the saline solution and the breast looks “deflated” soon after. Silicone implant ruptures are harder to detect because of the nature of the silicone material, which tends to remain in or around the implant pocket. There may be no noticeable changes in breast appearance after a silicone implant rupture; sometimes, only an imaging test reveals the problem.
Symmastia is the result of an over-aggressive dissection during surgery, giving the patient a web-like appearance between breasts. One or both implants can shift out of place toward the center of the chest, creating what some refer to as uniboob.
The tissue capsule around the implants can become unusually hard and tight, putting pressure on the breasts. This can cause the breasts to look unnatural and, in severe cases, feel painful.
Two conditions can cause what is referred to as “double bubble.” First, the implants can shift upward, causing the appearance of an empty sac or bubble below the implant. Or, the implants can fall below the inframammary fold, causing a bubble-like effect below the primary projection of the breast.
Breast implants can shift out of their tissue pocket and move higher or lower on the chest, too far toward the armpits or too close to the center of the chest.
In some women – particularly women with little natural breast tissue or those who select saline implants – folds or wrinkles can be visible underneath the breast skin. This can occur if the tissue pocket is too large for the implant or if the implant shifts out of its original position.
Candidates for Breast Revision
Candidates for breast revision have aesthetic, medical and/or emotional reasons for wanting to remove or replace their breast implants. They also need to meet a certain set of criteria to qualify for surgery; namely they need to be in good health, not smoke (or quit prior to surgery) and not be pregnant or nursing at the time of surgery. And they should have realistic goals and expectations of surgery.
Interested candidates are encouraged to meet with Dr. Khalil to discuss their treatment options.
The Breast Revision Consultation
During a breast revision consultation, Dr. Khalil examines the patient’s breasts and asks her about her surgical goals, medical history and history of previous surgeries. He discusses the available treatment options and explains the likely outcomes of each option. Together, Dr. Khalil and the patient determine the most suitable plan of action.
Breast Implant Removal vs. Revision
Some breast implant revision patients choose to replace their implants with a new pair. After removing the old pair and correcting any problems with the tissue pocket (e.g., enlarging or reducing the pocket), Dr. Khalil positions the new pair.
Other women opt to remove their implants without replacing them. In this scenario, the patient may want to consider breast lift at the time of implant removal, especially if they have very large implants or poor skin elasticity. Removing excess skin and tightening the natural tissue can create a more attractive breast contour.
Recovering From Breast Revision
Breast revision recovery is similar to that of primary breast augmentation. Patients usually experience mild to moderate bruising, swelling and redness as well as some slight discomfort after the procedure. Dr. Khalil advises patients to wear compression garments and take medications to prevent infection and other complications. Heavy lifting and strenuous activities should be avoided for at least the first two weeks after surgery. Many patients are able to resume desk jobs within a week or two of surgery. Dr. Khalil is available by phone or email to answer any questions that come up during breast revision recovery.
Breast Revision Risks
The risk of serious complications from breast revision is low when surgery is performed by a qualified, board-certified plastic surgeon. Dr. Khalil’s patients are generally very happy with their results and enjoy a safe, smooth experience free of complications.
However, every surgical procedure has some degree of risk. Possible breast revision risks include:
- Changes in breast or nipple sensation
- Adverse reaction to anesthesia
- Excessive scarring
- Results that are not exactly what the patient wanted and require additional surgery to correct
Frequently Asked Questions About Breast Revision
If it has been 10 years since my primary breast augmentation, do I need to replace my implants?
As long as you are happy with the look of your breasts and are not experiencing any pain or other complications, there is no reason to remove or replace your implants.
How long do the results of breast revision last?
A successful breast revision procedure will keep the breasts looking beautiful for years. However, surgery does not prevent breasts from continuing to respond to the effects of age and gravity.
Will placing larger implants lift my breasts?
In cases of mild sagging, placing larger implants may provide a slight lift. But this is only true for a small number of women. Placing larger implants will not substantially lift the breasts if they are moderately to severely saggy. In those scenarios, placing larger, heavier implants usually accentuates the sagging. Breast lift is the most effective solution for saggy or droopy breasts.
Why should I choose Dr. Khalil to perform my breast revision surgery?
Breast revision is usually a more complicated procedure than primary breast augmentation, due to factors such as scar tissue and changes in the breast skin. Dr. Khalil has the experience and skill set needed to excel at breast revision. He is also a compassionate surgeon and a great listener, with a genuine desire to help his patients look and feel their best.
Following a patient’s breast revision surgery, bandages or dressings will be applied to the breasts and the patient will be given an elastic bandage or support bra in order minimize swelling and provide support. The healing process for a breast revision surgery may take longer than the initial surgery depending on the problem addressed, so it is important to allow the proper time for recovery to ensure the best results. Each patient is provided with post-operative recovery information prior to surgery on the day of the free consultation.
How Often Do Breast Implants Need to Be Replaced?
Breast implants do not need to be replaced unless they develop a complication or the patient no longer likes the look or feel of her augmented breasts. Modern breast implants are very safe and strong, and designed to last for many years. They do not have an “expiration date.”
Why Choose Dr. Khalil for Your Breast Revision Surgery
Dr. Khalil is a skilled, board certified surgeon who views breast revision as one of the most rewarding surgeries in plastic surgery. He utilizes many techniques to correct the various problems and complications that can occur following a breast augmentation. Each breast revision patient requires a different surgical plan in order to correct the problem at hand. Dr. Khalil’s attention to detail and dedication to patient care provide patients with comfort, knowledge and, best of all, the natural-looking result they have always envisioned for themselves.
Coming in for a free consultation will help you to understand the exact problem you are experiencing and surgical plan Dr. Khalil has in mind for you! Contact us today to schedule your appointment.