Does Breast Implant Removal Require Breast Lift Surgery?

i want to remove my breast implants. too big. if i do this will i most likely need a breast lift? is my skin stretched permanently as a result of implants?

Doctor Answers 48

Breast LIft Surgery Following Implant Removal

Breast implant removal does not always mean you need a lift afterwards. A number of factors will contribute to this such as implant size, weight fluctuations, skin elasticity, and the amount of time since augmentation. Only evaluation by your plastic surgeon can determine your need for a breast lift procedure.

Implant removal

Many patients do opt for a breast lift after breast implant removal. The factors to consider are how large the implants are that are being removed, how elastic is your skin, have you had weight fluctuations while you had the implants, etc...

Francis X. Fleming, MD
Kennewick Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 4 reviews

Lift After Explant?

For most patients, your breasts will return to their pre-augmented condition. I will often wait to address droop until 3-6 after explant as the tissues often contract nicely. However each patient is unique.

Often breast lift is required for the best results, but not always.

Many women's breasts will sag after implants are removed as the smaller breast volume settles to the bottom of their larger skin envelope. This is not always the case, however, and should be a question for your physician during an in-person consultation. If the breast is likely to sag after implant removal, a breast lift can help to restore the smaller, but perky, shape that you desire. This can often be done simultaneously with your implant removal or may be done later if there is a reasonable expectation that you will not need a lift.

Breast Implant Removal and Breast Lift

This question depends on how much you changed your volume with your breast augmentation. If you went from an A cup to a B cup or if you went from a A cup to a DD cup. The contribution of your implant to your breast size will determine if you need a breast lift or not. If you choose to have your implants removed, a breast lift can be performed simultaneously. Consult with your board-certified surgeon.

Brian Coan, MD, FACS
Raleigh-Durham Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Not always necessary

Removal doesn't always necessitate a lift. However, if you have larger implants and your skin has stretched, then it can be difficult for your skin to retract. As a result there is a higher risk of requiring a lift if you've had larger implants for a longer time.

Lift may not be necessary

It may not be necessary to perform a breast lift operation after an implant removal.  It will just depend on how stretched out the skin is, what operation is performed, and how the skin responds after surgery.

Breast lift after explant

A breast lift is needed if the volume of implant is generally over 300 cc, if the nipple areolar complex is too low, if there is too much skin that does not tighten up (often due to poor skin quality and stretch marks), and if there are dents or tissue deficiencies that can be corrected with an internal lift.

Susan Kolb, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Does breast implant removal require breast lift surgery?

Removal of breast implants, even if the implants are large, does not mean you will need a lift. If your breasts are already sagging or low with the implants in, then you will need a lift.  If the breasts do not sag or only a little bit, then I would advise removing the implants, allowing time for healing, and then re-assessing the look of your breasts.  Often a lift is not desired 

John Zavell, MD, FACS
Toledo Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

Need for Breast Lift Surgery Varies from Patient to Patient Following Implant Removal

                  It’s not unusual for patients who have large implants removed to require breast lift surgery.  The need for breast lift surgery under these circumstances varies from patient to patient and depends on a variety of factors. 

                  In any particular case it’s virtually impossible to know if a breast lift will be necessary following explantation without pictures or a physical examination.  The presence of a nipple areola complex that sets below the infra-mammary fold, poor skin tone and a high ratio of implant volume to native breast tissue volume often suggests the need for breast lift surgery. 

                  Breast sag following explantation is more likely in patients who have had multiple pregnancies, have breast fed, have had weight fluctuations and have had implants for a longer period of time.  When implants are large and placed on top of the muscle the incidence of breast sag following implant removal is higher as well.

                  If you’re considering removal of your breast implants, consultation with a board certified plastic surgeon is appropriate.  This surgeon should be able to determine the likelihood of a breast lift following implant removal based on your physical examination.  

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.