How Often Should Breast Implants Be Replaced?

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Although breast implants aren’t permanent, there isn’t any set schedule for replacement. It’s different for everyone. Some women may have to replace their implants once or twice after the initial surgery; others may not have to at all.

Woman touching a silicone breast implant next to a doctor.

Do Breast Implants Last for 10 Years?

Some women believe that breast implants should be replaced every ten years. This common misconception comes from a 2011 FDA report that stated up to 20 percent of people with breast implants needed to replace or alter them 10 years later.

Another way to look at these statistics is that 80 percent of women with implants did not need another surgery within 10 years.

When Are New Breast Implants Needed?

Most types of silicone and saline implants have been approved by the FDA for 10 to 20 years. 

This can give a misleading impression. Implants don’t have to be replaced after 20 years. The time between replacements is determined by the type of implant, individual physiology, and whether or not any complications have been experienced.

What Should I Look Out for With My Implants?

Contractures or Calcified Lumps

Watch for signs that may mean your implants need attention. One of the most common is capsular contracture. This is a layer of hardened scar tissue that develops around one or both breast implants. This scar tissue makes breasts feel hard and look distorted, and it may be uncomfortable.

Hard lumps under your skin around implants could be calcium deposits. These calcified deposits need to be addressed by a surgeon.

Ruptured Implants

Silicone and saline implants can rupture, although this is very rare. The ASPS states that only three percent of breast implants are affected by deflation or rupture. However, saline implants can leak. Saline is nontoxic, and you will not experience any health complications should your saline implant rupture or leak.

Signs of ruptured implants may be very minor at first but become more noticeable over time. Potential signs of a rupture include reduced breast size, hard knots, pain or tingling, or uneven breast appearance.

Are Breast Implant Replacements Always Necessary?

Breast implants can shift and move out of their original positions over time. This is more likely to occur after pregnancy, significant weight gain, or sudden weight loss. Implants don’t always need to be replaced after shifting, but replacement may be the best option if breasts look lopsided or uneven.

Implants can also wrinkle, which causes rippling on the skin around the breasts. Wrinkling isn’t a health risk, but people may choose to replace wrinkled implants for aesthetic reasons.

Breast revisions aren’t always done out of necessity. Many breast implant replacements are by choice because women want to change something, such as larger or smaller breasts.

Do You Want to Learn More?

Contact DAVinci Plastic Surgery at 202-966-9590 or use the online contact form to schedule a consultation or ask questions. We are happy to help you make an educated decision when choosing breast implants or replacing existing implants.

Schedule Your Consultation at DAVinci Plastic Surgery

The initial consultation with your surgeon is critical! It should always be face to face with your surgeon, during which time he/she listens closely to your concerns. Dr. Davison and Dr. Pinell believe this time spent with you is critical to both you and him/her. It is during the consultation that your surgeon comes to fully understand your concerns, evaluates them correctly, and is then able to make the recommendations and develop the treatment plan that is right for you. Dr. Davison and Dr. Pinell invest the time to sit down and talk to you face to face.

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