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Common Breast Implant Problems - When do they need to be replaced?

For many women, breast surgery and breast implants are a saving grace. They allow women the freedom to choose how their breasts will look and can correct any appearance issues.

Tagged: Body & Breast

Common Breast Implant Problems - When do they need to be replaced?

For many women, breast surgery and breast implants are a saving grace. They allow women the freedom to choose how their breasts will look and can correct any appearance issues. This can lead to an increase in self-esteem, self-confidence, and a boost in mental health. This being said, there are breast implant problems that can be experienced. In fact, around 20% of women have their breast implants removed or replaced within 8-10 years. There is a reduced risk of this happening if you have selected an expert in the field of breast surgery to carry out your procedure in the first place. However, even this does not guarantee that you will not experience any breast implant problems.

Women need to ensure that they are aware of the signs of breast implant problems. Missing these could lead to severe medical problems. Breast implants don’t have an expiry date, but they rarely last a lifetime. It is reasonable to expect them to last 10-20 years. At this point, it may be time to consider the removal or replacement of old breast implants. If you’re not sure if the time has come to have yours replaced, by reading on you’ll learn all about the signs to look out for. 

Common breast implant problems

It is important to know that when carried out by experts such as those at Cadogan Clinic, the risk of any issues with breast implants is greatly reduced. There have been rising cases of women experiencing breast implant problems after having surgery carried out abroad. The draw is what appears to be a lower price than is available in the UK, but this can often see sub-standard procedures being carried out. This is not the only reason for breast implant problems. There are several reasons why women seek removal or replacement. These include:

It may be the case that a woman is no longer happy with the appearance of her breasts. This could lead to her seeking additional surgery and removing old breast implants and having them replaced. It could be that the original result from surgery was not what was expected or could be the case that someone has had a change of mind.

There are times when complications occur with breast implants. This can lead to capsular contracture or there could be a rupture.

As we have seen, even when there are no issues or complications, breast implants rarely last beyond 20 years. This means that after this time there is a need to have them replaced.

PIP implants were identified as having an increased chance of rupturing. In fact, the risk can be between 2 and 6 times that of other implants. Leaving these implants in can cause some women to feel anxious and seek a breast implant replacement. 

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Signs of breast implant problems

Knowing breast implant problems that can occur is one thing, but it is important to know the signs of breast implant problems too. Being aware of these means that you a more likely to seek professional assistance sooner rather than later. 

Here are some of the main signs to look out for:

This is a breast implant problem caused by your bodies reaction to the implant. It recognises the implant as a foreign body and goes into self-defence mode to protect you. This sees it developing hardened scar tissue around one or both breast implants. Common signs of this include:

  • Tightness
  • Pain
  • Tenderness
  • Abnormal changes to the appearance of your breasts

If you have saline breast implants it is possible that these can rupture. This is a rare occurrence but if it does happen, the saline will be reabsorbed by your body. Signs of this breast implant problem are:

  • Loss in size of the affected breast
  • Change in shape of the affected breast
  • A dramatic change in appearance 

Silicone is thicker than saline so this means it tends to stay inside the implant when it ruptures. This leads to a silicone rupture being known as a silent rupture as it is not always obvious. If there are any signs, they will include:

  • Decrease in breast size
  • Pain
  • Tenderness
  • Numbness
  • Swelling
  • Burning
  • Changes in sensation 

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Problems caused by old breast implants

There are women who opt for breast surgery as a way of reversing the effects of ageing. Certainly, when it comes to a breast lift, this can restore the pertness of a woman’s breasts. What breast surgery can not do is halt the ageing process altogether. Old breast implants that have been present for many years may no longer have the desired effect that a woman was looking for and this may lead to them considering a change. 

Old breast implants may lead to sagging as a woman ages. This is no different to a woman who has naturally large breasts: it is the weight that will lead to sagging. It is also possible that the breasts will lose their symmetry. When either of these occurs, although there is no medical need, many will consider replacing their breast implants.

How to correct breast implant problems

Women who experience breast implant problems, as well as those whose preferences have changed, are able to correct these. This is done using breast implant replacement surgery. This sees old breast implants being removed and replaced with new ones. The surgery takes place under general anaesthetic and you can expect this to take 1-2 hours. Scarring is kept to a minimum and your surgeon will make their incision to remove your implant along the original scar. 

If you have experienced any breast implant problems or seen any of the signs, then it is important that you are in the hands of experts. Our team at Cadogan Clinic is the best when it comes to breast surgery. You can book a consultation to discuss your needs and take your first steps towards replacing your breast implants. 


Treatments mentioned in this article

Breast enlargement surgery, or breast implants or augmentation, is one of our most regularly performed procedures at the Cadogan Clinic and our surgeons are leading experts in this field.

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