While there are exceptions, many breast implants do not last forever. Natural wear will sometimes call for the removal and replacement of implants. However, some women wish to get rid of their implants when this time comes. Breast implant removal is a procedure that removes the artificial implants from a patient’s breast pocket and helps them achieve the natural breasts they are desiring.
At Cosmetic Surgery Associates, we work closely with our patients to help them achieve a look that they love so that they feel healthier, happier, and more confident. Schedule an appointment with Dr. Richards, Dr. Jabs, or Dr. Magge at our Maryland or Virginia office to find out why patients travel from near and far to have their breast implant removal performed at Cosmetic Surgery Associates.
About Breast Implant Removal
Breast implant removal is a popular surgical option for women who wish to return to their natural breast size following breast augmentation with implants. In most cases, the surgery can be performed at any time following the placement of implants. There are a variety of reasons why women choose to remove their implants, both functional and aesthetic. It is also possible for women to undergo breast revision, which allows women to replace old implants or fix issues they have with their current implants without removing them permanently.
Why Women Choose to Remove Implants
Breast implant removal, sometimes calling explanting, has gained popularity over the past decade. While many women love their implants, others wish to return to their natural breast size for a variety of reasons. Part of this can be attributed to a change in what’s considered attractive in popular culture. Many women chose to get implants during the reign of Pamela Anderson and Baywatch. Now, over a decade later, some women are due for a replacement of their implants and have decided that they no longer desire the larger breasts that they once did.
Other reasons why women choose to remove their implants is due to cost of maintenance, neck and back pain, difficulty working out, or other health concerns. At Cosmetic Surgery Associates, we don’t believe that there is any “right” or “wrong” reason for wanting to remove implants. However, during the consultation, we will go over the patient’s reasoning thoroughly to better work together and choose the procedure that will give them results they love for years to come.
Feel free to request an appointment today if this surgery is something that interests you.
In general, women with implants who wish to remove them must be in good health and have reasonable expectations for the outcome of their surgery. They should be nonsmokers, posses the proper ability to heal, and should not be allergic to anesthesia.
There are few exceptions for when it would be in the woman’s best interest to keep their breast implants. One of these exceptions is for women who were previously small chested and have gotten significantly larger implants. In some cases, the skin around the implant may have thinned to a point that the nipple requires the implant for support.
The only way to determine whether or not a patient is a good candidate for any cosmetic surgery is by meeting with a board certified plastic surgeon, such as Dr. Richards, Dr. Jabs, or Dr. Magge, who can help the patient make the right decision.
Breast implant removal surgery is typically performed as an outpatient operation under IV sedation or general anesthesia. When possible, our doctors will try and remove the implant through the same incision as when it was originally placed as to avoid further scarring. The doctor will determine the best point of extraction during the patient’s consultation.
The surgeon will then remove each implant. It is likely that the patient will require an additional procedure, such as a breast lift, depending on their individual case and aesthetic goals. If so, the doctor will perform that additional breast enhancing procedure before suturing the incisions. The patient will then be taken to a recovery room with attentive nurses until they wake up from the anesthesia.
At Cosmetic Surgery Associates, removing the implants is not the only goal of breast implant removal surgery. The ultimate goal is to leave the patient with a bust that they love. In order to achieve the patient’s desired results, an additional procedure may be necessary.
Over half of our breast implant removal patients find that they will need a breast lift in order to achieve their desired results. This is due to the fact that the skin around the breast has been stretched from the implant and without the implant now appears pendulous. In order to avoid saggy or deflated looking breasts, a breast lift can help regain the perkiness of the patient’s original breasts.
A breast lift may require a slightly longer incision than the breast augmentation incision. Depending on the degree of ptosis, or sagging, that the breast has, the doctor will make one of the following incisions.
- Crescent: half circle incision around the areola
- Donut: full circle incision around the areola
- Lollipop: full circle incision around the areola, plus an incision from the lowest point of the areola to the breast crease
- Anchor: same incisions as the lollipop, plus another incision along the breast crease
The doctor will then reposition the nipple and raise the breast to a more attractive height. Please feel free to look at some of our breast lift Before and After photos on our website to get an better understanding of what can be accomplished from the procedure, while keeping in mind that results will vary.
This kind of breast augmentation is incredibly natural looking and feeling. However, it will not yield the same volumizing results as an implant.
A fat transfer will allow women to remove their implants without losing all of the volume provided by the implants. A fat transfer uses liposuction to remove fat from somewhere else on the patient’s body. Then, the fat is cleaned and reinjected back into the breasts for a natural breast augmentation. Realistically, it can only help women increase their original breast size at most one cup size.
A fat transfer has the added benefit of allowing the patient to sculpt their body through liposuction. The doctor will work with the patient to determine the best liposuction locations from which to harvest the fat for reinjection. These locations can be anywhere where the patient has localized deposits of excess fat, including but not limited to the abdomen, flanks, arms, thighs, and knees.
In the days following the procedure, patients can expect to experience some bruising and swelling. They will be provided with a prescription to help ease any additional discomfort. In order to aid in good recovery, they will be placed in a compression garment.
The patient should plan on taking a couple days off from work to ensure proper healing. During this time, they will be instructed to do some light stretching and walking. They should avoid anti-inflammatory medications and smoking during this time.
Following breast implant removal surgery, the breasts will not look like their original size and shape right away. Often, the breasts may appear deflated or pruned following the procedure as the skin readjusts to its initial shape. More than half of women will require an additional procedure to get their breasts back to looking like they did before their augmentation surgery. It can take up to a month for the breasts to return to their natural shape.
All patients are required to return for a follow-up appointment about one week after their procedure. At this time, the doctor will ensure that the patient is healing according to plan and remove any non-dissolvable sutures. Most often, more than one follow-up appointment will be scheduled, as our relationship with the patient extends far beyond the procedure date.
A consultation is necessary prior to performing any breast implant removal procedure. During the consultation, one of our experienced doctors – Dr. Richards, Dr. Jabs, or Dr. Magge – will go over the patient’s reasons for wanting breast implant removal surgery. They will also ask the patient about their medical history, including but not limited to their breast augmentation procedure and maintenance record.
In order to determine whether or not the patient is a good candidate for breast implant removal and the best techniques for their situation, the doctor will perform a physical examination and take measurements. They will also take photographs for further evaluation.
The doctor will offer their expert opinion on the best techniques for the individual’s case. However, it is ultimately the patient’s decision whether or not they choose to undergo surgery. There is no pressure for the patient to make a decision or schedule their appointment at the time of the consultation. We urge the patient to ask any questions they may have so that they leave the consultation feeling fully informed.
The cost of breast implant removal is dependent on a number of factors specific to the individual. For this reason, it is important that the patient schedule a breast implant removal consultation at our Bethesda, Maryland or McLean, Virginia office and meet personally with one of our highly experienced doctors. Once the doctor has examined the individual case, our team will be able to provide the patient with a cost estimate for the procedure.
Please call one of our offices today or fill out our online form in order to learn more about breast implant removal procedures and schedule a one-on-one consultation!