If you’re thinking about breast implant removal surgery—whether your personal preferences have changed or you’re experiencing symptoms that may demand their removal—it’s normal to feel apprehensive about what your body might look like, and one of the best ways to combat apprehensiveness is through information.
What is breast explant surgery?
Breast implant removal, also known as explant surgery, is a surgical procedure that removes (or explants) the implants from the breast pocket. It’s done for a number of reasons, from breast implant illness to end of their natural lifespan (it’s recommended that you replace your breast implants every 10 years to avoid any complications) to capsular contracture or rupture and even simple just change in your preferences.
Possible symptoms that my breast implants are too old?
As mentioned, it’s recommended that you remove and/or replace your implants every 10 years. However if you’re experiencing any symptoms of Breast Implant Illness, it’s important that you speak to your primary care physician to discuss your options and rule out all possible causes.
Unfortunately, Breast Implant Illness is still somewhat of a mystery, but it’s thought to be a systemic inflammatory reaction or a rare autoimmune reaction to breast implants or the scar tissue surrounding the implants, but while some who experience BII also get diagnosed with a specific autoimmune or connective tissue disorder, many don’t. Some believe it’s due to breast implant contamination (which is why it’s so important to initially choose a board certified plastic surgeon for your breast augmentation surgery). Others believe some women may be genetically predisposed to developing an immune reaction to the materials used in breast implants.
Some symptoms of implant sickness that are commonly reported include:
- Chronic fatigue and headaches
- Persistent joint and muscle pain
- Unexplained respiratory difficulties
- Hair loss and frequent skin rashes
- Chronically dry mouth and eyes
- Poor memory and concentration
- Depression, anxiety, and insomnia
If you’re concerned about what you’ll look like after your breast implant removal, our biggest tip is to choose an experienced, board-certified plastic surgeon to ensure you love your breasts after explant surgery. You may need an explant surgery with lift, where your surgeon performs a breast lift along with your breast implant removal to maintain a perky, youthful shape and position to the breasts. Another option to consider is a fat transfer breast augmentation: a two-fold process that takes excess, unwanted fat from one part of the body through liposuction and injects it into the breast to achieve an enhanced size and shape.
What to expect during your breast implant removal recovery
You can expect a similar recovery with your breast implant removal surgery as you did with your breast augmentation surgery: three days of solid downtime and relative downtime for at least two weeks. You’ll likely experience soreness, swelling, bruising and sensitivity for a few weeks, but it should subside enough within the first few days to allow you to return to most of your activities without significant discomfort. Most patients can return to light activities within one week and more strenuous exercise after about six weeks. You may also notice you don’t feel mentally like yourself after your explant surgery—don’t worry, it’s completely normal to feel some anxiety and even depression the first week or two following your surgery.
Having realistic expectations for your surgical outcome is very important to your overall satisfaction. Dr. Barrett has gathered an assortment of fat transfer breast augmentation before and after images you may want to browse to get a fuller scope of not only the type of outcome you can expect, but also his work in breast augmentation and reconstruction. Additionally, Dr. Barrett has a carefully curated postoperative scar regimen to ensure the only reminder of your procedure are your sculpted results.
To ensure you have the best possible outcome, Dr. Barrett has curated a breast augmentation recovery kit to set his breast augmentation and breast implant removal patients up for surgical success with the least amount of down time and discomfort possible.
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