Breast Implant Removal (Explant) & Replacement
Breast augmentation can help many individuals add fullness and enhanced shape to their breasts with natural-looking, long-lasting results. Some patients may want to keep their current breast implants for many years before removal or replacement with another implant model, while other patients may want to do it earlier. Copeland Cosmetic Surgery understands that there are a variety of reasons why women may want to remove or switch out their current implants, as they are not designed to last a lifetime. That is why our practice offers breast implant removal (also referred to as an explant procedure) and implant replacement. Whether you are looking to exchange your implants for new ones that align more to your current aesthetic goals or remove your implants due to lifestyle changes, our board-certified plastic surgeon – Dr. Jeffrey Copeland – is happy to assist you in customizing a treatment plan.
If you are considering breast implant removal and replacement or would like to learn more, we invite you to read the information provided below.
- Reasons for Breast Implant Removal & Replacement
- Breast Implant Removal Techniques
- Breast Implant Removal Procedure
- Breast Shape Restoration After Implant Removal
- Breast Implant Removal Recovery
- Breast Implant Removal Scars
- Breast Implant Removal Cost
What Are Common Reasons for Breast Implant Removal & Replacement?
There is a wide range of personal and medical reasons that lead women to remove or replace their current breast implants, including the following:
- Desire to change their breast implant size, type, or shape
- Discomfort and pain from capsular contracture (when excessive scar tissue surrounding the implant becomes hard)
- Concern about a potential implant rupture or movement
- Implant leakage and deflation
- Implant infection
Some breast augmentation patients may wish to remove their implants because they are apprehensive about a 2019 recall, from the global market, issued from the developer Allergan® concerning certain types of BIOCELL textured breast implants. We invite you to contact our practice for more information or to schedule a consultation with Dr. Copeland so that he can answer any of your questions and listen to your concerns. He wants every patient to be educated and feel comfortable and confident in their decision for breast implant removal treatment.
Which Breast Implant Removal Technique is Right for Me?
During your consultation, you will have the chance to discuss with Dr. Copeland your aesthetic desires. He will carefully evaluate your breast implants and current situation. From there, he will be able to determine the best technique to successfully complete your implant removal or replacement.
Dr. Copeland usually performs the procedure by first identifying the tissue capsule that forms around the breast implant. In many cases, he will utilize advanced techniques to remove both the capsule and the breast implant simultaneously. Dr. Copeland will explain all aspects of the procedure during the initial consultation so you will know what to expect.
What Happens During Breast Implant Removal?
The breast implant removal and replacement process can vary between patients. The surgery can be completed in different ways based on the patient’s situation, the technique utilized, and other concerns unique to each individual.
Generally, the process involves the following steps:
- Incision – It is usually made along the inframammary fold under the breast or around the areola. Oftentimes, Dr. Copeland can use the original incision made when the patient underwent breast augmentation to avoid additional scarring.
- Implant Removal – Breast augmentation patients usually have a breast capsule surrounding the implant. It is a “pocket” made of scar tissue that develops as a reaction to a foreign object (the breast implant) being inside the body. Dr. Copeland will remove both the breast implant and capsule during the procedure if he feels it is necessary.
- Implant Replacement (if desired) – If included in the patient’s treatment plan, Dr. Copeland will place new implants immediately after the current breast implants are removed.
- Incision Closure
How Is Breast Shape Restored After Implants Are Removed?
The breast tissue and skin may not shrink back to their natural position after the breast implants are removed. That is why Dr. Copeland offers breast lift surgery (also referred to as mastopexy) for patients who would like to restore a more natural-looking and perky appearance to their breasts after their implants are gone. A breast lift can reposition and reshape sagging breasts by addressing weakened breast tissue and skin. If needed or desired, the nipple and areola can be relocated to a more youthful position, as well.
Patients who had larger implants or had their implants in place for a long time are more likely to be recommended a breast lift after the removal of their implants. Other women who had smaller implants or have great skin elasticity may not need a breast lift. Dr. Copeland will evaluate your current circumstances and advise you on the best solution to achieve your aesthetic goals.
What Is Recovery Like After Breast Implant Removal & Replacement?
Since the nature of the surgery and the techniques that are used highly depends on the individual, the recovery period will be different for each patient. Women may experience some bruising or swelling near the incision sites for several days after the procedure. Pain medications can help patients manage any initial discomfort they may experience. To help facilitate healing and prevent blood clots, we usually recommend taking short walks and sitting up after surgery. Other strenuous exercises and activities should be avoided for at least another six weeks. After the procedure, Dr. Copeland will make sure to provide more detailed post-operative instructions on how to take care of the incisions to minimize the risk of infection and complications.
Will I Have Scars After Breast Implant Removal & Replacement?
Incision placements can vary among each patient, depending on their needs and cosmetic desires. During the breast implant removal and replacement process, Dr. Copeland does his best to make incisions in places that can easily be concealed with a bra or bikini top. In many cases, the breast implant removal incision is made in the same location as the one created for breast augmentation. For this reason, scarring is typically minimal and never more than what was already there. During the consultation, Dr. Copeland will carefully examine your breasts and give you a better idea of what you can expect in terms of scarring.
How Much Does Breast Implant Removal & Replacement Cost?
The cost of breast implant removal and replacement at Copeland Cosmetic Surgery ranges from $5,000 to $7,000. Since the procedure is personalized to the individual, the total expense is different for each patient. The amount of money you spend on treatment usually depends on the following:
- Anesthesia fees
- Surgeon’s fee
- Complexity of treatment
- Whether new breast implants are being placed
- Hospital or surgical facility costs
- Prescribed medications
- Post-surgical garments
- Breast lift cost (if included in treatment plan)
- Medical exams and x-rays
At your consultation, a member of our team can give you a more precise quote and answer all your questions regarding how to pay for treatment. At our practice, financing options with CareCredit® are available for qualified applicants. CareCredit® provides approved patients with monthly payment plans that have little to no interest. If you have any questions or concerns about the cost of breast implant removal and replacement, please do not hesitate to call Copeland Cosmetic Surgery. We would be more than happy to help you.
If you would like more information about breast implant removal and replacement surgery, or if you are ready to schedule an appointment with Dr. Copeland, please contact our office today.