Reduce Breast Implant Infection Risk


It is of paramount importance to minimize risk of infection after breast augmentation. Fortunately, it rarely occurs if the surgery is performed by “qualified” plastic surgeons (i.e., they are “properly” board certified and have performed the procedure countless times before).

While each surgeon has his own “list” of recommendations and practices to reduce the infection risk, there are basic guidelines most of them stick to.

  • Proper patient selection
Patients with no healing problem or significant medical condition who follow a healthy lifestyle (i.e., they do not smoke nor drink excessively, and stick to superb diet) are generally considered as good candidates for breast augmentation.

Meanwhile, obese women, smokers, and diabetics have an increased rate of infection after surgery, making them poor candidates for any elective surgical enhancement.

  • Proper venue—hospital vs. accredited surgery facility
Some experts have concluded that breast augmentation surgery in a private accredited surgery facility, which does not handle infectious diseases, could lead to lower risk of infection than in a hospital.

  • Techniques at the time of surgery
Many surgeons use antibiotics at the time of surgery (i.e., when rinsing the implant pocket and the device itself). To further minimize risk of complications, some even use Keller Funnel that allows them to perform the implantation without actually touching the implant shell.

With Keller Funnel technique, surgeons propel the implants with the use of a cone-shaped device whose inside is heavily lubricated to make the “transfer” quick and effortless.

To further minimize risk of infection at the time of surgery, it also makes sense to sterilize the instruments immediately prior to surgery, rather than days ahead of time.

  • Postop care
It is important not to submerge the incisions in water for at least a month to avoid infection. To further minimize the risk, some doctors also require their patients to take antibiotics intravenously beforehand, and orally for 5-7 days after surgery.

Good hygiene and sanitation, e.g., frequent washing of hands, using clean bed linen, etc., can also minimize risk of infection.
Article by
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon