Breast Implant Removal: What to Expect


Breast augmentation is one of the most sought-after cosmetic procedures in the United States. About 400,000 women get breast implants every year. Even as the numbers continue to grow, there’s a small percentage of women who choose to have their breast implants removed. The reasons for breast implant removal vary from one woman to another and may be medically necessary or elective. Here’s what to expect when undergoing breast implant removal with Dr. Capek.

Understanding Breast Implant Removal

Breast implant removal surgery is designed to reverse the results of breast augmentation. It can achieve various goals depending on your needs, including removing implants and replacing them with new implants or your own fat, repositioning the implants, or removing them altogether. Simple removal can be done in the office under local anesthesia, but more often the surgery involves other steps that require general anesthesia and a recovery period.

Why Choose Breast Implant Removal?

There are many different reasons why people choose breast implant removal. The most common reason includes complications that can occur after breast augmentation. These include implant rupture or infection, deflation, capsular contraction, and rippling. Some women simply want to replace their implants with a different size or style.

We also see many patients who choose to have their implants removed because they no longer suit their lifestyle, their breasts have changed during the course of childbearing or menopause and they don’t like feel or appearance of their implants anymore.

More recently, patients have expressed health concerns that they attribute to their breast implants. Although there is no proven medical diagnosis for this constellation of symptoms, it has been dubbed Breast Implant Illness (BII) by the internet community.

Our practice can address elective explant for any patient who wishes to have this surgery, if Dr. Capek otherwise determines they are a reasonable surgical candidate.

What Should I Expect During a Breast Implant Removal Surgery?

There are a variety of techniques that may be used during breast implant removal surgery. They include:

  • Saline breast implant deflation, followed by removal at a later date. This allows the skin to retract and for the patient to see how their natural breasts looks will look after explant.
  • Simple removal of saline or silicone implants in the office. Reasonable option for patients without abnormal capsular tissue.
  • Implant removal and capsulectomy (capsule removal). Dense or abnormal capsules, or those containing ruptured implant material may be removed in one piece (en bloc).

The removal procedure may be accompanied by, or followed by additional procedures that are planned ahead of time with Dr. Capek.

  • Replacement with new implants, modifying style and size as needed
  • Replacement of volume with fat transfer from another part of your body. This has the added benefit of body contouring stubborn areas!
  • Breast lift to tighten stretched out tissues

Visit our Explant, Natural Breast Augmentation or Mastopexy pages for more details!

What Should I Expect During Recovery?

For most patients, breast implant removal surgery is not associated with significant discomfort and for some people, only over-the -counter pain meds are required. Return to work and exercise will vary depending on the complexity of your procedure. Dr. Capek and her team guide you through the recovery process with detailed instructions and follows ups to optimize your results.

Schedule a Consultation

Breast implant removal can be life-changing for some patients! It’s important to see a board-certified plastic surgeon who can help you achieve your goals. To get started, we invite you to contact our Latham office by calling or filling out our online contact form. We look forward to seeing you!