Breast augmentation is one of the most popular cosmetic surgery procedures, with millions of women worldwide opting for this surgery to enhance their breast size and shape.  Breast implants are medical devices that are surgically inserted into the breasts to improve the projection and shape.

There are different types of breast implants available today, including saline and silicone. Saline breast implants contain a silicone outer shell filled with a saline solution, while silicone breast implants have a silicone outer shell and are filled with silicone gel. There are pros and cons for each type of implant, which will be discussed with your plastic surgeon in consultation before surgery.

Regardless of which type of breast implant is chosen, many patients wonder how long they can expect their implants to last.  Read on to learn when implants should be replaced and why.

How Long Do Breast Implants Last?

There is no exact length of time that breast implants can last for. Breast implants may last longer for some patients than for others; replacement ultimately depends on if the patient has cosmetic concerns or if they are experiencing discomfort or other complications. While some patients may return for breast implant exchange after 10 years, the timeline may be shorter or longer for other patients.

When Should I Exchange My Implants?

There are some signs and symptoms that a patient may require an implant exchange, including:

Implant Rupture

Both silicone and saline implants may rupture or leak. With saline implants, the leaking saline solution will be reabsorbed by your body and your breast will seem to “deflate”. With silicone implants, your body cannot absorb the silicone gel, so it may not be as noticeable that you have experienced a rupture. However, some patients may experience discomfort or increasing firmness due to a ruptured silicone implant.  Routine breast imaging should be performed unless concerns arise.

Capsular Contracture or Encapsulation

When a foreign body such as a breast implant is placed into the body, a shell will form around it (referred to as the capsule). It is usually soft, and most patients do not know it is there. However, in some cases, capsular contracture may occur, which results in tightening and may progress to discomfort or altered appearance of the breast.

You are No Longer Happy with the Look/Feel of Your Breasts

Women who underwent breast implant surgery when they were younger may desire a change in their breasts. Some women may wish to exchange their current implants for a smaller or larger size, while some may wish to remove the implants altogether.

Schedule a Consultation

If you are interested in breast augmentation surgery with implants, contact Power Plastic Surgery in Toronto, ON Canada. Your first step will be to schedule a consultation appointment with Stephanie Power, MD.

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