Breast implant removal with a simultaneous mastopexy, or breast lift, is a comprehensive procedure for aesthetic enhancement and, sometimes, medical necessity. Over time, women’s preferences and personal circumstances may change, leading them to consider removing or replacing their breast implants. Additionally, some women may experience complications such as capsular contracture, implant rupture, or dissatisfaction with the appearance of their breasts, which may require revision surgery.
If you are considering breast implant removal with a lift, we invite you to schedule a consultation with Dr. Andrew Wolin at Wolin Plastic Surgery Center in Scottsdale, Arizona. Contact us at (480) 945-8440 or message us online to learn more about the procedure and discuss your options. As a double-board certified plastic surgeon with over 30 years of experience in plastic and reconstructive surgery, Dr. Wolin takes the cosmetic concerns of his patients very seriously. Take the first step towards enhancing your natural beauty and regaining confidence in your appearance with the help of Dr. Wolin and his team.
- 1 Before and After Photos
- 2 When to Get Your Breast Implants Removed
- 3 Personal Consultation
- 4 Preparation for Breast Implant Removal With Lift
- 5 Procedure Steps
- 6 Fat Grafting
- 7 Recovery and Results
- 8 Cost of a Breast Implant Removal With Lift in Scottsdale, AZ
- 9 FAQ
- 10 References
Before and After Photos
When to Get Your Breast Implants Removed
The breasts are a defining feature of femininity and beauty for many women. Over time, however, changes in our bodies or personal circumstances may lead us to consider breast implant removal with a lift. It is a surgical procedure that addresses various concerns, such as dissatisfaction with the size or shape of implants, implant complications, changes in aesthetic preferences, or a desire for a more natural, youthful appearance.
Breast implants are not designed to last the entirety of your life. While research estimates that some implants can last about 20 years, most recommend removing them much sooner. (1) Their longevity doesn’t necessarily have to do with the quality of the implant, but a woman’s unique anatomy, age, and health are also critical factors in how long implants last. A research study followed 500+ women with implants over the course of several years and found that nearly 50% of them had to get their implants removed 10 years post-procedure due to a medical reason. (2)
Reasons for Implant Removal
Women undergo implant removal for a number of reasons, including the following:
- Capsular Contracture – Capsular contracture is a condition where the normal scar tissue capsule that forms around the implant becomes extremely fibrous and tough, resulting in breast distortion and pain.
- Dynamic Distortion – Dynamic distortion occurs in women who have implants placed under the pectoralis (chest muscle). When this muscle flexes, it can result in the implant moving abnormally. It can make exercising an uncomfortable experience.
- Implant Rupture – A ruptured implant is a rare occurrence in women with modern-day implants, but it’s not unheard of. If a saline implant ruptures, the body can readily absorb the saline. With a silicone implant rupture, the silicone can harm the lymph nodes- vital structures of the immune system that are present throughout the body.
- Breast implant illness (BII) – BII is not a well-understood condition, but its effects can be significant. In a small percentage of women, symptoms purported to be linked to their breast implants include anxiety and depression, chronic fatigue, and joint and muscle pain. Studies theorize that BII symptoms are the result of an immune reaction to the implants.
- Pain – Breast pain should never be ignored. Whether it is benign or points to a more serious problem, women with implants should be able to go about their lives confidently and pain-free.
Breast Lift After Implant Removal
Women also undergo breast implant removal due to cosmetic issues like asymmetry between both breasts and skin rippling. Implants are designed to be as realistic and as safe as possible, but sometimes, women prefer to go back to the natural feel of their breasts. Time can also wear down on the body, allowing the implants to drop further than expected. Eventually, implant removal becomes a necessary next step, but a mastopexy can mitigate the negative results from the implant pocket left behind. This way, you won’t have to worry as much about droopiness, sagging, or an overall look of “deflated” breasts.
During your consultation, Dr. Wolin will take the time to understand your unique concerns and expectations for the procedure. He will conduct a thorough examination of your breasts, assessing the condition of your implants, the quality of your skin, and the position of your nipples. As a trusted professional, Dr. Wolin is committed to ensuring that you are well-informed about the procedure. He will explain the potential risks, benefits, and limitations involved, allowing you to make an educated decision regarding your breast implant removal with lift.
Preparation for Breast Implant Removal With Lift
Dr. Wolin will conduct an ultrasound breast exam in order to properly evaluate your breast tissue and assess if a mastopexy is suitable for your body. He will advise that you stop taking medications and supplements that thin the blood; these can result in excessive bruising or bleeding. If you smoke or vape regularly or consume other nicotine products, he will require that you quit 4 to 6 weeks before your procedure appointment so that you’ll have healthy blood circulation required for proper healing. Additionally, you may want to pick up your prescriptions for recovery beforehand.
To begin, we will administer anesthesia for your comfort. Next, Dr. Wolin will mark the incision areas on the breast with a marker. The breast implants will be removed via an incision on the inframammary fold, the crease on the underside of the breast. (3) Dr. Wolin will remove the implant along with the scar tissue that encapsulates it, the capsule, providing the breast pocket a protective barrier against the implant itself. This part of the procedure is called a composite capsulectomy.
Next, Dr. Wolin will begin the breast lift portion of the procedure. He will make a lollipop-shaped incision, closely following the outside of each areola with a vertical incision that runs directly down to the inframammary fold. Then, he will rearrange the breast mound so that it appears lifted, rounder, and firmer. He may change the positioning of the nipple as well.
Following a breast implant removal with lift, there is sometimes significant degradation of tissue in the décolleté and the area above the areola. This can lead to an unbalanced, larger amount of tissue in the lower breast. In these cases, six months after the procedure, Dr. Wolin harvests fat from another area of the patient’s body and grafts it to the areas of deficit to create a balanced, symmetrical breast profile.
Recovery and Results
Immediately after your procedure, you will need a surgical bra to promote faster healing, reduce swelling, and provide protection for the incisions. Though the recovery is different for everyone, most patients feel well enough to go back to sedentary work within 1 to 2 weeks. Depending on how extensive your surgery is, you may need a drain to allow fluid to exit the body rather than contribute to more swelling.
You should keep the incision sites clean and dry. We will advise you to sleep on your back until it’s safe to remove the surgical bra. Usually, patients wear it for around 2 to 3 weeks. After about 4 weeks, you can go back to working out, heavy lifting, and other strenuous activities. After 6 months, your scars will begin to fade.
Cost of a Breast Implant Removal With Lift in Scottsdale, AZ
The cost of the surgery will vary based on several factors unique to each patient. At our practice, we prioritize transparency and ensure that our patients have a clear understanding of the financial investment involved in their procedure. Following your consultation, you will be provided with an accurate estimate for the cost of your breast implant removal with lift.
Do all women with implants need a lift with their explant surgery?
Depending on the patient’s skin elasticity and the size of their implants, they may not need a lift alongside their explant surgery.
Can I replace my implants after breast implant removal?
Yes! Though, you might want to reconsider the type of implant you want to get. If you are getting a replacement due to capsular contracture, you may want to opt for an implant that is less likely to cause the condition. For example, implants with a smooth texture are more likely to cause excessive scar tissue buildup.
How long does a breast implant removal and lift procedure take?
The procedure usually takes 1 to 3 hours to complete, but with very extensive changes, sometimes, more time is needed.
How can I further enhance my breasts after a breast implant removal and lift procedure?
If your breasts still appear deflated after the procedure and recovery process, you can provide more volume (without the use of breast implants) with a fat transfer procedure. With this technique, deposits of your own fat are harvested with liposuction, purified, and reinjected into the breasts to provide more fullness.
- Fardo D, Sequeira Campos M, Pensler JM. Breast Augmentation. PubMed. Published 2021. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK482206/#:~:text=The%20risk%20of%20complications%20is
- Zhang, Z., Qi, J., Zhang, X. et al. What Can We Learn from Breast Implant Explantation: a 28-Year, Multicenter Retrospective Study of 1004 Explantation Cases. Aesth Plast Surg (2023). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00266-023-03365-4
- Tevis SE, Hunt KK, Clemens MW. Stepwise En Bloc Resection of Breast Implant-Associated Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma with Oncologic Considerations. Aesthetic Surgery Journal Open Forum. 2019;1(1):ojz005. doi:https://doi.org/10.1093/asjof/ojz005