POSTED 7th August 2017

Do breast implants last a lifetime?

Most patients who seek breast implants have considered having plastic surgery for many years. It’s a big decision, and not one to be taken lightly.

That’s why we offer lots of information to help you decide if breast enlargement surgery is right for you, and we meet with you to make the necessary assessments and to enable you to ask lots of questions about the procedure to have breast implants.

One of the most common questions we get asked is: “How long will breast implants last for?”

While there is no reason why your implants shouldn’t last a lifetime, there are several factors which may mean you will need to consider having your implants replaced in future. It’s important that you take this into consideration before you decide to go ahead with breast enlargement surgery in the first place.

Your changing body

There is no maintenance or special care treatment that you need to apply to ensure your breast implants last a lifetime; it is just simply likely that as you age, your breasts age and change shape. This may mean that, after a decade or so, you may prefer to have different breast implants in order to maintain a natural shape.

While everyone’s body ages and changes differently, you will most likely need to review your breast implants after 10 to 15 years.

In many instances, there is no need to replace the implants but it depends on how your body changes over time. Some people may find that they are perfectly happy with their shape after this period, but you should know that new implants may be necessary before you decide to go ahead with your initial surgery.

Replacing your breast implants

If you do decide to replace your implants later on in life, then the procedure is very much the same as when you first have them fitted.

You’ll need to attend a consultation so that we can assess how your body shape has changed and to decide on the size and shape of the new implants.

You will again need to undergo a general anaesthetic to have your old implants removed and the new ones fitted, and then you’ll have to stay in hospital for at least one night to begin the recovery process.

We can usually use the same incisions again so that your scarring remains minimal.

Sometimes, if the breasts have dropped significantly in the intervening years, the breast implant replacement is combined with a breast uplift procedure (also known as mastopexy) which does leave a lollipop-shaped scar on the breast, as seen on our mastopexy image gallery.

Like the first time you had breast enlargement surgery, you’ll need to take care after surgery to allow your body to heal properly, so will need to have a few days off work and take it easy for the first few weeks.

You’ll also need to return for a post-operative assessment so that we can ensure everything is healing as it should.

Please note that routine mammograms should be continued after breast augmentation, if you’re in the appropriate age group, though you will need to tell your technician that you have implants as they will need to alter their techniques to get a correct reading.

Find out more about breast enlargement surgery at Manchester Plastic Surgery.