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Most plastic surgery results that are posted online are not very long term – probably a year or less in time. This is far more prevalent for certain procedures where the results do not generally hold up long term nearly as long compared to others.

There are a few reasons for this which are quite understandable. The first is that plastic surgeons and others who perform cosmetic surgery procedures will virtually always only post their best or, at least, better results in their photo galleries on their website because they are trying to attract patients to their practices and sell them on their skills and results. Results that have which have deteriorated over time, usually as a consequence of patient health issues, lifestyle, weight gain and fluctuations, aging and other factors and which are not directly reflective of the surgeon’s skill or initial outcome, will do exactly the opposite.

That is not good for business.

The second reason for lack of very long term results is that most people are quite happy with their results and just move on with their lives without any need for any further follow up. They may even move out of the area making it more unlikely to have any long term follow up.

But wouldn’t it be nice to truly see what some long term results look like such as for a breast augmentation, tummy tuck or even eyelid surgery? Many people are, in fact, curious about this.

Recently, I saw a patient of mine who had a breast augmentation using saline implants more than 18 years ago. She was having no problems whatsoever and was still very happy with the results. There was no rippling or major untoward long term changes related to the saline implants and the appearance was relatively natural. (See photos)

Preoperative – frontal view

Eighteen year results


Eighteen years after


Eighteen years after

In my opinion, both the short and long term results from saline implants generally are not nearly as good as those obtained with silicone implants – and for many reasons. This difference is even more profound when dealing with larger saline implants or in women who are relatively thin and with little breast tissue. Nevertheless, this woman still has excellent long term results even with saline implants.

Steven H. Turkeltaub, M.D. P.C.
Scottsdale and Phoenix, Arizona

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