I have a deflated saline breast implant 14 yrs old, can't financially fix it now. How long can I wait? Past the 10 yrs so surgical cost is not covered and need time to save. Here are my questions:Since it's been 14 years should I have the other replaced also?Considered that once I get past this hurdle it may happen to the other and cause additional cost - my next question what is the results if I have them completely removed? What will the end result be?
14 years old saline Implant deflated, how long can I wait?
Doctor Answers (10)
14 year old deflated saline implants, how long can I wait?
You had a nice long run with your saline implants! If you decide to replace them, I would recommend replacing them both and consider switching to silicone gel implants. There is no real urgency to replace them asap, but really the sooner the better so your pocket doesn't close. If you opt to removing them both, they should go back to what they would've been without implants if you have good skin quality and your skin retracts. Volume depends on how much of your own breast tissue you have. You can always remove them and see how you feel about them and put implants back in later, but there will be cost and recovery time to consider. Ask your surgeon to speak to some patients who have had implant removals and do your research. Good luck. ac
Breast Implants and Breast Augmentations
Most patients who have a saline implant deflation at the 14 year mark will opt to have both replaced as the "other" implant can theoretically deflate at any time which would result in another surgery. In my experience most patients with saline deflations opt for silicone replacement implants to avoid this problem in the future. If you have them both removed the shape you end up with depends on the volume of the implants that are removed and the ability of your own tissue to contract. You should have a very good idea of what you would look like by examining the shape of your breast with the current deflation. Hope this helps.
Deflated implants can stay 'forever'
and if you're having issues with asymmetry, consider getting the other one intentionally deflated so you're even again. You should get both of them changed if you do decide to have them redone. And if you had them removed in my office, my all inclusive fee would be $500 assuming you have an incision at the bottom of your breast.
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How Long to Wait to Replace Deflated Implant
First realize there really isn't a rush to replace the implants. I've had patients wait more than a year due to various life issues. On the ruptured side the skin and breast tissue will contract/shrink. However, the majority of this contraction occurs within the first two to three weeks.
You're going to replace both because Murphy's Law would have the other 14-year-old implant rupture a few days after the other is replaced. If you were my patient I would rupture the other implant about 3 weeks prior to the replacement. This will give the tissues on that side time to contract and the resulting asymmetry will be significantly better than if it is not ruptured prior to surgery.
I too recommend silicone as they are a far superior product.
Management of deflated saline implant
There should be no reason you need to think of your implant deflation as an urgent problem, and surgery to replace them (I would recommend replacing them both) can wait as long as is necessary.
My advice would be to replace both implants. You can avoid the issue of another deflation by updating your 14 year old implants. You've done well getting 14 years out of them already. I would recommend a change to silicone implants. The new generation are safe and beautiful.
Timing for replacement after deflation of saline breast implant
The longer you wait the more likely you are to have problems with symmetry. Both the scar and the skin around the deflated implant are shrinking while on the other breast the envelope is being maintained. You should have both implants exchanged. Minimally you should have both removed to minimize asymmetry.
You are in no danger waiting to have your implants replaced. Since the implants are 14 years old, consult with your Plastic Surgeon about changing silicone gel. Many Plastic Surgeons offer care credit, which is a financial program. You may want to consider this.
You could get the other side deflated in an office visit so that it matches the deflated side
until you figure out what you want to do. You are 10 years outside of your warranty so I would recommend switching both out. Silicone gel is now an option for you. You should discuss your options with a board-certified plastic surgeon to assess what would work best for you. I would not wait too long.
Deflated saline breast implants
There is no danger in waiting as long as you want to have revision surgery. You may consider having a PS deflate the other side to avoid obvious asymmetry. It's a simple procedure done in an exam room with local anesthesia and a needle to drain the implant. I would recommend you replace both sides. As far as removing them, a picture would have been helpful. Otherwise, you would need to discuss that with a PS in person to see if you would need a breast lift as well.
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.