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Comparing 4 Breast Implant Removal (Explant) Surgeries: Which Is Right for You?

Comparing 4 Breast Implant Removal Surgeries: Which Is Right for You?

One myth surrounding breast implants is that they can last forever. While it may seem as if that should be the case, in truth it isn’t. Most implants last for about 10 to 15 years. Once your implants wear out or get damaged, you need to get a breast implant removal surgery, also called an explant procedure, to either remove or replace your implants.

Your quest to have perfectly shaped, large breasts is possible through a breast augmentation surgery. Your options for enhancing your bustline include either implants or the innovative fat transfer procedure. Not every woman is a good candidate for the fat transfer breast augmentation procedure, and that often makes breast implants the most appropriate choice.

But implants aren’t a perfect solution, either. They require you to stay healthy, maintain a stable weight and get checked every now and then, especially if you get silicone implants. To learn which procedure is best for your needs, visit the experienced breast surgeons at Rowe Plastic Surgery in Manhattan, Long Island, New Jersey and the Hamptons.

What Types of Breast Implants Need to Be Removed?

Breast implants require regular checkups to ensure they’re at their optimal best. For saline implants, your plastic surgeon makes certain that the implant is intact and hasn’t created a double bubble. For silicone implants, the FDA has recommended that you get an MRI every three years to ensure the shell integrity is stable. Despite all your careful maintenance, your breast implants will still need to be removed or replaced eventually.

Different types of breast implants have different reasons behind the need for removal. Some of these factors include:

  • Saline vs. silicone implants. Saline implants are made from sterile saline water, but the implant shell can sometimes get damaged. Luckily, when this happens, your body absorbs the saline water, and there’s no harm done. Silicone implants are made from a thick, sticky gel-like substance that resembles human fat. When these implants rupture, your body doesn’t absorb the silicone gel, making a leak potentially dangerous.
  • Round vs. teardrop implants. Round-shaped breast implants give a more youthful and perky appearance while providing some breast lift. You may need to get an areola reduction or nipple correction due to your breast skin stretching. Teardrop implants provide a more natural appearance, as they are thin on the top and tapered at the bottom.
  • Gummy bear breast implants. These implants are an improvement on the classic silicone-filled teardrop shaped breast implants. Gummy bear implants are made from an ultra-cohesive silicone gel. The silicone gives the implant a more natural feel and look when placed inside your breast cavity.

Why Do I Need to Remove My Breast Implants?

Medically speaking, you need to remove your breast implants because they’ve ruptured. Leaks drive the most breast implant removals, but each type of fill has different requirements, including:

  • Saline implants. When saline implants break, the salt water leaks out and is safely absorbed by your body. But then you’re left with one breast that’s deflated while the other looks fine. To rectify this, the surgery is compulsory.
  • Silicone implants. When a silicone implant breaks, the silicone gel oozes out, which can cause pain and discomfort. By removing the flawed implant, you maintain your health.

Many women also opt to get their breast implants removed because of a change of heart. Although getting breast implants was the right choice at the time, some women want to get back their smaller breasts when they’re older. A few women choose the revision surgery because they want to downsize to a smaller implant size.

What’s Capsular Contracture?

In some cases, you may need to get breast implant removal surgery due to capsular contracture. Capsules are scar tissues that naturally form around your implants as part of the healing process. Normally, these scar tissues are soft and keep your implants in place. But when the scar tissues become hard and start to contract, you develop aesthetic problems with the breast implants. The condition also causes pain.

Your breast implant removal surgery depends on the grade level of your capsules. The grades run from one to four, such as:

  1. Grade 1. In this mild level, your capsules don’t cause pain or alter the implant size, shape or texture. The breast implants still feel and soft to the touch.
  2. Grade 2. You start noticing minor aesthetic problems around the implant. While the shape of your breast doesn’t change, you can feel the implant is somewhat hard to the touch.
  3. Grade 3. Your breasts start to look strange due to the contraction of the capsules. Your breast implants feel hard to the touch, and your breasts could appear as overly round and hard, with misshapen nipples.
  4. Grade 4. Along with the aesthetic problems, in which your breasts feel hard and look misshapen, your bosom starts aching. Your breasts may be so tender that you feel pain whenever they’re touched.

What Are the Types of Breast Implant Removal Surgery?

The success of an explant surgery relies on the skills of your board certified breast surgeon. The decision to remove the scar tissues or not influences the type of removal surgery that’s right for you. Along with the capsules, the dimensions and sizes of the implants also factor into the decision.

There are four basic types of breast implant removal surgery. Based on your consultation, an examination and any needed tests, your surgeon at Rowe Plastic Surgery may suggest:

  1. Breast implant removal. This is the simplest surgery of the four types. If your capsule is Grade 1 or still soft, the surgery only removes the implants, leaving behind the scar tissue capsules. These naturally disintegrate in your body over time.
  2. Total capsulectomy. This surgery removes your implants and capsules. Your surgeon separates the scar tissue from the other breast tissues and then removes the capsules in pieces. This surgery may be necessary if the capsules are very hard.
  3. En bloc capsulectomy. This is the most complex breast implant removal surgery. The surgery is best suited for implants that have ruptured. Your surgeon removes the implant and the capsule together. This limits the chance of infection and other complications.
  4. Breast implant with breast lift. After your implant is removed, you may notice that the skin of your breasts has stretched, giving them an unattractive droop. Getting a breast lift and new, smaller implants tightens and revitalizes your breast tissues with hardly any extra recovery time.

If you’re having problems with your implants or want to return to your old self, talk to an experienced breast surgeon like those at Rowe Plastic Surgery in New Jersey and New York City. They step you through your options and pick the most appropriate breast implant removal surgery for you. Contact the practice today to schedule your consultation.

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