Breast implant Replacement surgery is breast surgery that involves removing old breast implants and replacing them with new implants.
This procedure may be done to correct complications or in combination with other procedures, most commonly a breast lift or mastopexy. Implants can also be replaced to change the size or shape of the breasts if your preferences change with time.
Common reasons for Breast Implant Replacement include:
Cosmetic reasons, e.g. change size/shape, restore symmetry
Complications, e.g. capsular contracture, rupture
Replace old or aged implants
Replace PIP Implants
As part of combination surgery, e.g. breast lift
Introduction to Replacement of Implants surgery
Breast Implant Replacement / Removal
At A Glance
1 - 2 hours
Exercise Including Gym
Time Off Work
1 - 2 weeks
Bras & Garments
Sports bra worn for 8 weeks
Restricted activity after 4 weeks
Shower after 1 week
6 - 8 weeks
1 - 2 weeks
Sleeping on back recommended for 1-2 weeks
Breast Implant Replacement / Removal Before & After Gallery
See what is possible by clicking the button below.
We have invited a selection of the country's very best consultants to join us at the Cadogan Clinic so that you can be sure that whatever the nature of your treatment, you will be seeing one of the top practitioners in the country.
Mr. Edmund Fitzgerald O'Connor
Specialist Plastic & Reconstructive Surgeon
Mr Edmund Fitzgerald O’Connor is a fully qualified Specialist Plastic & Reconstructive Surgeon. He focuses on providing the highest quality of care to all his patients. Putting patient safety, patient experience and patient outcomes first in all that he does...
Breast implant replacement surgery typically takes place under general anaesthetic and lasts between 1 to 2 hours depending on the size and shape of the new breast implants, the technique your surgeon employs and whether combination surgery is undergone at the same time.
Your surgeon will start the procedure by removing the original implants via incisions made on the original scar site. If the new implant is similar in terms of size and shape, then the existing capsule will suffice and replacement surgery can be quick.
If the new implant is different from the original implant, then surgery is more complex as the capsule will need to be altered (either enlarged or reduced) in order to accommodate the new implant.
Once the new implant is in place, your surgeon will suture the breast along the your existing scarring line to leaving minimal scarring.
To enquire about a consultation with a Breast Implant Replacement / Removal specialist, please complete the form:
Find out more
If you have any questions or queries please call to speak to one of our advisors or request a call back to speak at a time that suits you.
Cadogan Clinic considers individuals fit for the procedure, if all of the following are true of them:
You are unhappy with the size, shape or position of your implants
Your implants are `bottoming out` (lateral displacement)
Your implants have become hard to the touch and misshapen (capsular contracture)
Your implants have started to move or rotate creating an uneven appearance
Your implants have moved to creating a gap between your breasts
Your implants are made by PIP and you want them replaced
You are having another procedure and want your implants updated at the same time
I had a procedure at the Cadogan Clinic. From my first consultation, my surgeon was honest, straight forward, and precise. All the details and expectations of the surgery were fully explained, along with the after care. I am still in recovery, but the results already look fantastic; they delivered on all the promises that he made to me.
A huge thank you to the Cadogan Clinic who looked after me whilst having surgery. They treated me with so much care and it was truly appreciated. The care from the nurses was wonderful, and I genuinely felt that they really cared. First class service from the start. I also had follow-up calls the day after, couldn’t ask for more. A huge thank you to all involved
The Cadogan Clinic and their surgical and nursing staff were excellent throughout my experience with them. The 24/7 nursing support in particular was a huge comfort to me, and I found them extremely responsive
I wanted to say a big thank you to the Cadogan Clinic, I am so happy with the results from my surgery. I can’t thank my patient advisor enough for being my support throughout my journey. I felt so reassured from my initial consultation with her and she followed me up closely at each stage. Would recommend highly.
Three weeks ago I had advanced fat transfer surgery and I am over the moon with the results. My whole wellbeing has been uplifted and I am so much more confident and happy with myself. Thank you to the Clinic and my surgeon for their fantastic work and expertise
I was nervous before my procedure, but I was put at ease by all the staff I encountered from my patient advisor, surgeon and the nursing staff. It was a huge reassurance to have access to the 24/7 on call nurse service immediately after my procedure also.
A massive thank you to the Cadogan Clinic. I am very pleased with the results from my surgery. My patient advisor was extremely organised and made me feel reassured throughout the whole experience. My surgeon was excellent and so was the Clinic team - I could not have asked for a better service
I had the most amazing experience with the Cadogan Clinic. They were extremely accommodating and professional. I was a little bit hesitant to go through with it but their safety standards and professionalism put me at ease. Most importantly I am so happy with my results.
PIP Breast Implants
Regrettably, implant replacement has become increasingly popular in light of recent concerns raised around the quality of implants after the PIP controversy, when disreputable providers utilised poor-quality materials in a bid to cut costs.
The Cadogan Clinic is one of the very few facilities to have never used low-quality PIP products - sadly, other clinics have not made the same commitment to these high standards of healthcare practice in the past. As such, we are a trusted source for anyone needing implant replacement with a safe, high-quality alternative. We have built a world-leading reputation for the replacement of implants carried out by lower-end cosmetic clinics, and we strongly recommend that you contact us if you are experiencing any irritation or inflammation in your chest area and think you may have been exposed to PIP implants in the past.
If you have previously had breast implant surgery at the Cadogan Clinic, you can rest assured your implants are of the highest quality and are not PIP implants.
The first step for all of our implant replacement patients is to meet with the surgeon we feel is best placed to perform your procedure for a consultation. At the consultation you will be able to discuss with your surgeon what your hope to achieve from the procedure, as well as discuss in detail what may or may not be possible given your existing anatomy.
Your surgeon will take you through the options available to you, and which is the most preferential for you given your stated ambitions. Having established this, several key measurements will be made and standard clinical photography will be taken.
Some questions you might like to ask include:
Am I a good candidate for this procedure?
What will be expected of me to get the best results?
What surgical technique is recommended for me?
How long of a recovery period can I expect, and what kind of help will I need during my recovery?
How can I expect my breast implant revision to look over time?
What are my options if I am dissatisfied with the outcome?
Do you have before-and-after photos I can look at for this procedure?
Finally a comprehensive discussion regarding risks and complications will take place, alongside a discussion regarding what to expect in the post procedure and recovery phase. Your previous medical history will also be recorded (including previous surgery, medications, allergies etc.) and an assessment of your fitness for surgery.
If your surgeon feels you are a good candidate for surgery, you are then invited to consider whether you would like to proceed for surgery or otherwise following a two week 'cooling off' period.
Within this period you are welcome to come in and discuss your potential surgery with your surgeon as many times as you like.
If you choose to proceed with surgery, the next time you come into the Clinic after your final consultation will be the day of your procedure. Before admission the following behavioural changes are recommended / required:
In the 6 weeks before your procedure we recommend smoking is discontinued as patients who smoke have a higher risk of healing more slowly and complications (see FAQs)
In the week before your procedure you must cease taking Aspirin or any medication that contains Aspirin
In the 6 hours prior to surgery you must not consume food or any drink, other than small sips of clear fluid (e.g. still water, black coffee, black tea) which are allowed up to 2 hours before admission
On the day of your procedure we ask that you arrive for your admission an hour before the agreed start time of surgery. At this point a nurse will come and record blood pressure and other relevant vitals, you will meet with your anaesthetist and your surgeon who will make the final mark-ups.
The procedure itself takes place under general anaesthetic over the course of one to two hours. Your surgeon will make an incision along your existing scar site, and remove and replace the implants via this aperture in the skin. Your surgeon may need to increase the size of the capsule and the incision site, if a larger or differently shaped implant is being used. Your surgeon will then re-suture along the same scar site once surgery is complete.
You should not feel much pain during the procedure, but you may have some for a few days or weeks afterwards. You'll be given painkillers if you need them.
Following the procedure, you will recover in our ambulatory recovery rooms for between two to three hours, dependent on the scale of the procedure. Once our specialist nursing team are happy that your initial recovery is complete and you are safe to return home, you will be allowed to leave the Clinic accompanied by a friend or member of your family.
Once home you will have access to our dedicated on-call nursing team 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. This team of specialists are dedicated to your comfort and pain control, and are there to field any questions you may have in the immediate post operative phase.
We ask that you come in and see our nursing team 1 week after surgery to ensure your incision sites have been properly reviewed. At this juncture we also recommend you meet with one of our on site aestheticians to discuss ongoing treatment to support the healing and scarring process.
We ask that you come in to see your surgeon after 6 - 8 weeks for a final check up.
Why come to The Cadogan Clinic for your breast implant replacement?
Cadogan Clinic is an award winning specialist cosmetic clinic, with a track record of delivering safe, high quality cosmetic surgery
We were founded by Mr Bryan Mayou, the surgeon who first brought Liposuction the UK, and he has trained the next generation of specialists at the Clinic
Unlike many of our competitors, we use the latest anaesthetic technologies to minimise your downtime, and allow you to return home on the day of your procedure
Our nursing team provide a dedicated 24/7 oncall service during recovery – whatever your question, we can provide the answer
We offer a complimentary consultation and treatment with our onsite team of aestheticians to ensure you heal and scar quickly and efficiently
What are the benefits of day case surgery?
What are the risks
Breast Implant Replacement surgery is a safe procedure, but it is common after surgery to experience:
bruising and swelling
a small amount of scarring
As with all surgical procedures, Breast Implant Replacement surgery carries some risk and it is possible that you might experience:
Bleeding or Infection
Poor healing of incisions and scarring
a collection of blood underneath the skin (haematoma)
death of fat tissue (fat necrosis) or embolism
Your surgeon will discuss these risks comprehensively at your consultation and explain how likely these risks and complications are, and how they would be treated.
WHAT QUESTIONS SHOULD I ASK DURING MY CONSULTATION?
Your consultation is designed to be perfect opportunity to ask all the pressing questions that you have to your consultant, ahead of making a decision on surgery. It is vital that you are fully informed before making your final decision, and the consultation is therefore a key part of the education and decision making process.
Some good examples of questions to ask, include:
Am I a good candidate for this procedure?
Do you think my goals are realistic given my existing anatomy?
Will I require a single surgery or multiple surgeries?
Can I see some before & after pictures of implant replacement procedures you have done previously?
How long will my recovery take?
Is it true that Cadogan offers 24/7 on call nursing service?
What can I expect in terms of bruising, swelling and scarring?
What are my options if I am unhappy with my results?
WHAT CAN I EXPECT AFTER BREAST IMPLANT REPLACEMENT SURGERY?
After your surgery, you will be asked to come in for a post-operative appointment to come back and see our nursing staff at the Clinic between 1 and 2 weeks after your surgery. At this point your incision sites will be reviewed, and your preliminary healing will be assessed.
After 6 weeks your surgeon will personally review your progress – again at the Clinic - and make sure you are recovering as expected. In addition, they will remove any stitches and advise you on the need for further dressings.
Throughout the recovery period you will have full access to our 24/7 on call nursing service, and full access to the Clinic and our post-operative facilities.
Our aim is to make you feel as comfortable as possible during the entirety of your recovery period.
HOW WILL I FEEL AFTER MY SURGERY?
As your anaesthetic or sedation wear off you will wake up in our recovery facilities at the Clinic. You may feel a little drowsy but this often wears off within a few hours. After several hours in recovery, you will eat and hydrate. At that point, you will be allowed to leave the Clinic by our nursing staff.
It is common to feel a little pain and discomfort in the immediate aftermath of surgery. This will wear off in due course. Our 24/7 on call service is open to all patients for any question or query they may have at this time.
HOW WILL I GET HOME AFTER MY SURGERY?
You will not be able to drive yourself home after the surgery. You should arrange for someone to pick you up and take you home. In addition, you will need to ask someone to stay with you for the first 24 hours after your procedure.
HOW MUCH TIME WILL I HAVE TO TAKE OFF WORK AND EXERCISE?
One of the major benefits of day case surgery and the anaesthetic used at the Cadogan Clinic (TIVA) is that recovery is typically very swift and patients can be back at work and active very shortly after the procedure. Whilst the extent of such activity should be gradually phased in, you should be back at work within a week or two and exercising within four to six weeks.
We always advise that you return to low impact activities first like walking and cycling before you are able to reintroduce more strenuous activity such as lifting heavy weights and doing intense aerobic activities.
WHEN WILL I SEE THE FINAL RESULTS OF MY IMPLANT REPLACEMENT SURGERY?
Final results are typically first seen six or so weeks after your procedure, with ongoing improvements beyond this point likely as the healing process fully completes over the next 3 months or so.
Your surgeon will be able to give you specific guidance at your consultation.
WHAT EFFECT CAN SMOKING AND ALCOHOL HAVE ON MY RESULTS?
Certain lifestyle factors can increase the risk of complications during and after your surgery. These include smoking, drinking alcohol, being overweight and taking drugs (for medical or recreational use.)
The most common impact of smoking before your surgery is that it increases your chances of developing an infection and inhibits your body's natural healing processes. We insist that all patients stop smoking and using nicotine products at least six weeks before surgery. Reducing alcohol intake is also strongly advised.
Your doctor will discuss your current BMI and drug use at your consultation and advise you further on this.
WHAT IS CAPSULAR CONTRACTURE?
A breast implant is a foreign body that does not occur naturally in the human body. When a foreign body is introduced to the human body, the human body recognises it as foreign and organically forms a fibrous tissue capsule around the entire implant. This occurs with a breast implant and is completely normal and expected.
The capsule formation process will be slightly different from person to person, however. In those who form more scar tissue (who 'scar easily'), the breasts develop an excessively hard or high volume of tissue around the breast, which may form with the muscular tissue and cause it to contract. This is called Capsular contracture, and can cause problems with the appearance of the breast implant, deforming the size, shape and proportions of the breast. The contractions themselves can also be uncomfortable for the individual.
Breast Implant Replacement surgery is effective surgery in which the capsule can be removed (Capsulectomy) and a new implant inserted around which a new, healthy capsule can be formed and the original desired aesthetic restored.
WHAT ARE PIP IMPLANTS AND WHY SHOULD THEY BE REMOVED OR REPLACED?
PIP implants were cheap silicone breast implants that were found to contain an unapproved silicone gel with potential health risks. They were also revealed as prone to splitting and up to six times as likely to rupture as high quality, approved implants.
PIP implants were largely used by low-cost, chain cosmetic providers due to the fact that they were the cheapest on the market. Almost 50,000 women in the UK received these implants.
Understandably, once this was found out by regulators, many women who had received the PIP implants wanted them removed or replaced, even though no link was ever directly proven to serious health complications.
During this crisis, the Cadogan Clinic became one of the most prominent corrective implant Clinics in the country, since we never used PIP products and enjoy a reputation as one of the leading specialist plastic and cosmetic clinics in the country. We continue to see PIP patients today
HOW DO I KNOW IF I HAVE A RUPTURED IMPLANT THAT NEEDS TO BE REPLACED?
Signs of a ruptured implant include:
swelling or a lump around the breast
a change in the shape of the breast
redness, pain or a burning sensation
If you have any of these symptoms of a ruptured implant you should seek immediate medical advice. Typically you will require a scan to confirm you have ruptured implants.
Ruptured implants need to be removed or replaced as soon as they have been diagnosed.
ARE BREAST IMPLANTS DIFFICULT TO REMOVE OR REPLACE?
Breast Implant Replacement surgery is relatively straightforward surgery.
Most implants can be removed quite easily, even under local anaesthesia. Polyurethane covered implants (Polytech) can be more difficult to extract, if one wants to remove all the foam covering.
Surgery time is commonly no more than an hour or two.
WHY DO SOME PEOPLE COMBINE IMPLANT REPLACEMENT WITH BREAST LIFT?
The breast will typically resume a normal shape and volume in the few weeks following surgery.
In some instances, particularly in older patients, there may be some excess skin or tissue caused by the effects of ageing or by stretching during pregnancy or weight gain.
Some patients elect to have a combination mastopexy (breast lift) at the same time to ensure to this loose skin is pre-emptively tightened around the new breast mould or even excised completely. This procedure can also ensure an optimal breast and nipple position is delivered, and that the breasts feel firmer following surgery.
WILL I NEED BREAST IMPLANT REPLACEMENT AFTER MY BREAST ENHANCEMENT?
Breast implants do not have an expiration date so you may not need to replace them at any stage following surgery.
Breast implant replacement surgery, or a change of implants, is typically only necessary when the breast implants no longer looks or feels good.
Sometimes a change of implants is necessary after childbirth, or due to the natural effects of ageing or following weight loss. In each instance, saggy breasts or asymmetric breasts can easily be corrected by a change of implants.
HOW IS BREAST IMPLANT REMOVAL DIFFERENT FROM IMPLANT REPLACEMENT?
Breast Implant Removal differs from Breast Implant Replacement in so far as the implant is removed and not replaced during such surgery.
After Breast Implant Removal the skin and tissue will retract to how they were before your initial breast implant surgery, meaning that in all likelihood no additional procedure will be required to restore your previous look.
In some instances, however, natural fat transfer breast augmentation alternatives might be necessary to counteract any appearance of breast deflation or emptiness.
WILL I NEED BREAST IMPLANT REMOVAL AFTER MY BREAST ENLARGEMENT?
Breast implant removal surgery is not usually required following breast implant surgery, and is only necessary in the rare instances where there is a complication following surgery. This could be capsular contracture or a ruptured breast implant.
We would typically ask you to get a scan to confirm what has happened, before coming in for a breast implant removal consultation with your surgeon.
DO YOU HAVE TO REPLACE BREAST IMPLANTS EVERY 10 YEARS?
Breast implants do not have an expiration date. It is not the case that implants should be replaced every 10 years. If implants are looking good and feeling good there is no reason to change them.
Breast Implants only need to be replaced in the very rare case whereby they break or rupture, which is usually a result of sub-standard implants or sub-standard surgery. This is not serious or a health risk, but may cause a change in shape or feel of the implant necessitating its removal.
Implants can also be replaced for personal reasons, including wanting to change the shape or size of the implants, breasts change due to weight loss or gain, age or having children.
WHAT HAPPENS IF YOU DON’T REPLACE BREAST IMPLANTS THAT NEED REMOVING?
If you think you require breast implant removal then we recommend you get in touch with your surgeon to discuss this immediately.
Implants that require removal or replacing must be removed addressed swiftly, particularly in the case of ruptured implants or capsular contracture.
WHERE CAN I GET MY IMPLANT REMOVED?
All of our breast surgeons perform breast implant removal surgery at the Cadogan Clinic. Breast implant removal is straightforward surgery and takes no longer than one hour to complete.
WHY IS CADOGAN CLINIC SO WELL KNOWN FOR BREAST IMPLANT REPLACEMENT?
The Cadogan Clinic has become a well-known provider of implant replacement services as our reputation as a trusted cosmetics provider was enhanced following the PIP scandal that implicated so many of our competitors.
As one of the few Clinics in the country not to use PIP products and insist on higher quality products, we were at the forefront of the replacement drive. It remains one of our most commonly performed surgical procedures at the Clinic to this day.
If you’re on this page you may be wondering what the different types of breast implant actually are and whether they are even safe. In this article we’ll answer your top questions and educate you on the types of breast implants, their safety and where you can actually get them.