Revision/Implant Removal


It is important that women with breast implants keep in mind that like the majority of medical devices, breast implants are not designed to last a lifetime. Ideally, women with breast implants should have an annual examination by a board-certified plastic surgeon to check to see if their implants need to be replaced.

In most cases, women with implants may need to have at least one or more surgeries for routine implant replacement. Often times women will come up with additional reasons for having revision surgery other than just to replace the breast implants.

Leakage is a common reason why women may need more surgery, which can occur in both saline and silicone devices. With saline implants it may be easier to notice a leak as the breast becomes softer and smaller. Silicone gel implants may not be as apparent as with saline implants. Leaks in silicone implants are usually self-contained and leak out in the capsule or pocket of the implant. It is highly recommended to have a mammogram or possibly an ultrasound to help detect any possible leakage.

There are numerous reasons women wish or need to have implant revision. Some of the most common reasons why women may decide to have implant replacements include:

  • Women decide to have bigger or smaller implants
  • A woman’s body changes with aging and desires breast implants to be in proportion to these changes
  • Breast implants may have an “empty” appearance at the top of the bust line
  • There is the occurrence of implant rippling or other distortions of shape and or implant hardening


Rupture of an implant may be related to the length of time it has been in the body. The general experience among plastic surgeons tends to be that implants last between 10-20 years. Breast implants of any type are not considered lifetime devices. Also, rupture may also be related to force or trauma, such as a blow to the chest in an auto accident.

With regard to saline implant ruptures, one usually knows when this occurs, as it deflates and a definite asymmetry becomes noticeable.

When silicone ruptures, it is often hard to tell since the silicone is usually contained within the capsule of scar that forms around the implant.

Women with breast implants need to stay in touch with their plastic surgeon on an annual basis and at any time a concern arises.

For more information about revision breast augmentation in Northern Virginia, contact us online to request a consultation at Plastic Surgery Services of Fredericksburg. Or you can call our office at 540-371-7730 and one of our knowledgeable staff members will be happy to help you.