I Am Wanting to Have Large Implants Exchanged for Smaller Ones, What About the Risk of Loose Skin?

i am 5'2 and have implants which were overfilled to 350 cc. i have been measured and told i am 32DD. i feel this is too large for my frame and want to be a small c. my questions are 1)how much less cc's do my new implants need to be approximately to achieve my desired cup size? 2) i have good skin elasticy but will i likely have loose skin? 3) besides reducing the pocket is there anything else that can be done to help appearance? i have had these implants for 11 yrs.

Doctor Answers (15)

How to choose smaller implants and decide on a lift.

+1

The most straightforward approach to determine your lift and implant choices are to remove the current implants from the clouding the picture. For saline implants this can be done with a deflation procedure. This procedure will eliminate the volume of the current implants, allow the breasts to show the degree of looseness or ptosis, and allow you and your surgeon to more accurately predict which implants will give you the look you desire and whether a lift is required.


Boca Raton Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

Deflate the implants - helpful tool for some

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The two unknowns in your situation are 1) what size of implants should be placed? and 2) will you need a lift after downsizing the implants?

 Here is a counter-intuitive idea for you that I have used several times....deflate the implants.

This is a very simple awake office procedure with basically no pain.  You will instantly be able to start over in the decision process regarding size and need for a lift.  It is much easier to "simulate" addition of volume to pick your implant size.  You may discover that you are a small C cup without implants and a lift is all that is necessary.

Of course, a component of the eventual surgery requires implant removal which is quite easy. 

York Jay Yates, MD
Salt Lake City Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 62 reviews

Need for breast lift is probable

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If your current bra size is 32DD and you want to go down to a 32C size, then you will need to exchange your 350 cc implants for much smaller implants.  With smaller implants, it is highly likely that you will have drooping of your breasts.  I think that you will need some kind of mastopexy, or breast lift.  Exactly how much of a lift you will need will depend on your physical examination.

James Tang, MD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
3.5 out of 5 stars 7 reviews

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Reducing implant size through a circumareola incision

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If your current size is 32 DD and you desire a C, that is 3 cup sizes smaller.  For a 32 inch chest that corresponds to 300 cc's.  Your 350 cc implants can be removed and excess skin resected through a circumareola approach.  Without the implants, your breasts will droop and you will need a mastopexy.  Depending on how ptotic it is, it is possible that it can all be done through the circumareola incision.  It is important that your remaining breast tissue is lifted on the chest wall and your nipples horizontally aligned to give you more youthful perky appearance.

Best of Luck,

Gary Horndeski, M.D.

Gary M. Horndeski, MD
Texas Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 135 reviews

Smaller implant exchange

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Exchanging your implant to smaller ones, may cause your skin to be looser. An exam is helpful but the final determination may require it to be performed in the operating room.

Steven Wallach, MD
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

Smaller implants and loose skin

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It is certainly possible to go to a smaller volume implant.  Your body does not like empty space and, if you have good skin elasticity, should tighten down around the new, smaller implant just as it does when we remove fat during liposuction.  As to the question about which volume implant will give you the cup size you are looking for, this is something you will have to work out in conjunction with your plastic surgeon.  Bra manufacturers do not make standard cup sizes.

 

Edwin C. Pound, III, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 11 reviews

Decreasing My Breast Implant Size-Will I Need A Lift?

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Dear bj1994,

It is always easier going up in size than down in size after a breast augmentation.  This is because there are so many variables to consider such as pocket size, skin elasticity, implant size differences, etc. 

Since your implants are saline, I would recommend you consider allowing your surgeon to deflate your implants with a needle place under local anesthesia and allowing the skin and the breast tissues to shrink back to their baseline.  This baseline will different than where you were 11 years ago due to the effect of having the larger implants for years, aging, and the normal effects of childbearing, nursing, etc.  It usually takes a few months to reach your new baseline and then you and your plastic surgeon can decide if you will require a breast lift and also the size of the new implants to achieve the look and size you desire.

I hope this helps and best of luck.

Herluf G. Lund, Jr, MD
Saint Louis Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

Going smaller with implant exchange

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If your implants have been in a long time the skin envelope may be loose, however if the nipple is not ptotic or drooping you might get by without a lift. The size implant you need is a guess without examination, and it could be possible if you really are a DD and want a small C you might not need an implant at all.

Best of luck, peterejohnsonmd.com

Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 31 reviews

Smaller implants

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You most likely will need a breast lift pending how much smaller you go in implant size.  See a board certified plastic surgeon to evaluate you.  Donald R. Nunn MD  Atlanta Plastic Surgeon.

Donald Nunn, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 reviews

Exchange of Breast Implants

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Without seeing photos or seeing you in person, it is impossible to give you specific advice.  However, if you are exchanging your breast implants for smaller ones, most likely you will need a breast lift to achieve the best looking  and most natural result.  Otherwise, your may have ptotic (sagging) skin.  If the size exchange is very slight, then the lift may be avoided.

 

Good luck.

David Shafer, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 57 reviews

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.