Breast augmentation procedures have come a long way over the years, and experienced surgeons have more tools at their disposal than ever before. However, that doesn’t mean that every patient will end up completely satisfied with her results. There are several reasons why someone might require a “revision”, or secondary procedure after their initial breast augmentation.
The most common reason for a revision is general maintenance. Just like natural breasts, augmented breasts change over time. You may become dissatisfied with the size, shape, texture, or symmetry of the breasts. These unfavorable changes are often seen after childbirth, extreme weight changes, or simply due to the aging process. Whatever the causes, a patient with an unsatisfactory breast augmentation is usually excellent candidate for a revision procedure.
Another reason that breast augmentation revision may be required is implant failure. While incidents of ruptured implants are not that common they do occur and chances of rupture increase with increasing age of the implant. Sings of implant rupture include decreased breast volume (the breast doesn’t fill the cup of the bra) and asymmetry. The rupture may occur overnight, or slowly over weeks.
It is difficult to give an exact life expectancy of breast prosthesis. In my practice, I have observed ruptures as early as a week (obviously a defective implant, which is extremely rare). On the other hand, I have seen many, many, patients with implants that are doing well at 20+ years. Fortunately, revision of a deflated implant is usually a quick and minimally uncomfortable procedure that produces great results. The best thing is that if the rupture occurs within 10 years, the warranty will provide a replacement for the implant and maybe even a replacement of the intact implant too. Also, this can be a great time to consider a size change.
Many patients mistakenly believe that the implants must be routinely changed at a certain time (10 years is the most common time mentioned). As a good rule, if the breasts are healthy, and the implants are intact, and you are happy with your results, no surgery is needed. It is important to always remember that any procedure may result in a complication, so “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”!
A revision procedure may also be a great option for a patient who has never been completely satisfied with her initial augmentation result. Because each patient is unique, initial decisions made by the surgeon may mean the difference between the patient’s desired result and disappointment. The original implant type, placement, and volume must all be considered when determining why the original procedure produce a satisfactory result. Healing with a foreign material is also at play, and for reasons we don’t understand, may be the sole reason for the unfavorable result. Fortunately, an experienced plastic surgeon will be able to assess the breasts and determine whether or not the issue may be able to be rectified with a revision procedure.
Examples of Issues that May Be Fixed or Improved with a Revision
– Hard texture (capsular contracture)
– Loss of volume
There is no reason to live with a breast augmentation that you are dissatisfied with. Simply work together with an experienced surgeon you trust to create a plan that will provide you with the breasts you’ve always wanted. Contact Dr. Kasden and our experienced staff today with your questions about the breast augmentation or revisions.