While it’s not necessary to replace your implants – there is no fixed life span with the quality implants we use – you can change them at any time.
Our patients opt for breast implant replacement for a number of reasons. Perhaps you want to increase or decrease the size of your breasts, or maybe the appearance has changed due to lifestyle factors such as pregnancy or weight loss.
Whatever your motivation for breast implant replacement surgery, our expert team will guide you every step of the way, providing the highest possible standards of care and support.
Our surgeons will seek to use the incisions made during your original breast implant surgery, so you don’t need to worry about additional scarring. The surgery involves removing the original breast implant and any scar tissue, clearing the breast pocket and inserting the new implant. It typically takes 1 – 2 hours and you’ll need to stay in hospital overnight.
While complications with breast implant replacement are rare, all surgery carries some element of risk. The main risk with this procedure is what is known as capsular contractor, a hardening of scar tissue causing firmness and distortion of the implant. This can happen quite early on in unusual cases though is more common when the implants have been in place for a few years.
The reasons for capsular contracture are multiple but one of the most common current theories is what is known as a ‘biofilm’. This is a very low-grade colonisation of the implant surface with bacteria, which forms a layer around the implant and is believed to cause irritation/inflammation. When capsular contractor occurs the implant usually has to be removed, though in more than a decade and with hundreds of breast surgeries carried out, this has affected less than 1% of patients.
Ask a friend or relative to be available to drive you home from the hospital and prepare to take up to two weeks off work. Stock up on food so you don’t need to go shopping and compile some books and films to read and watch so that you allow your body to recover.
When you leave hospital, you’ll be given pain relief medication and advised to sit up straight as much as possible while taking it easy for a few days and avoiding lifting and carrying. You should be able to move around but expect to feel sore for a while, so don’t overdo it. Ask for help with cooking and cleaning and other general chores.
We will prescribe pain relief but expect to feel a little sore for a week or two after surgery. Your bruising and swelling will start to settle after about three weeks. It will take time for your breasts to settle as they will be swollen initially, and it could be up to six weeks before you start to see your new shape appear.
You will be invited back for follow-up appointments so that we can check your progress though you can contact us at any time if you have any concerns or queries during recovery.
The first step is to attend an initial consultation where we will seek to understand your motivations for surgery and the results you would like to achieve. This is also a good opportunity for you to ask any questions and find out more about what breast replacement surgery involves.