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It has been my experience that most women who have had breast implants placed either for breast augmentation, breast lifts with enlargement or even for breast reconstruction rarely elect to have them removed permanently unless they have been experiencing long term problems. In fact, I have had numerous patients in their late 70’s and even early 80’s who needed either to have their implants removed or replaced with new ones due to rupture and most all opted for the replacement. They were so happy with their results and appearance that they could not nor did not want to imagine themselves without them.

There are, however, women who elect for a variety of reasons to have their breast implants permanently removed. A frequent question that they ask of this breast revision surgery is what their breasts will look like after the explantation (implant removal).

There are many factors that play a role in affecting the outcome so that there is not one simple answer to this question. The only consistent response to this is “smaller”. Some of the factors that can influence the final appearance of the breasts can include how long the implants have been in, their size, whether or not they are above or below the muscle (submuscular versus submammary), the quality of the skin, any and number of intervening pregnancies, any breast feeding and total duration, weight fluctuations and extent and even the existence of capsular contracture.

The following patient demonstrates a good result following breast revision surgery with removal of her implants but this is not representative of all results. This 40 year old woman had originally undergone a breast augmentation more than 10 years ago with saline implants that were placed above the muscle. Recently, she noted a deflation of the left breast implant (photos A, C and E) and just wanted the implants permanently removed.

A.) Before breast implant removal

B.) After removal of breast implant

C.) Before implant removal

D.) After surgery

E.) Before explantation

F.) After surgery

Her surgery involved the straight forward removal of the implants through her previous incision along the bottom of her areola. There was virtually no discomfort postoperatively and she was back to work within a few days. At little more than 3½ months after surgery, her breasts have a very pleasing appearance (photos B, D and F).

If you would like additional information on any type of breast revision surgery, on breast augmentation or for any other plastic surgery procedure that I perform, you can call my office at 480-451-3000. We would also be happy to schedule a complimentary consultation for you if you so desire.

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

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