Silicone breast implant removal - Where is the usual incision site? (Photos)

I have had my silicone implants since 1988. I want to have them removed and not replaced. What is the typical incision site used to remove? I originally had the inframammary incision. Also, I lost significant sensation with BA, can I expect to get any feeling back after removal? I would prefer to see how the breast look post removal without a breast lift, is there a good reason to have a lift at the same time as removal?

Doctor Answers 10

Removal of implants

Removal without a lift can be done through the same incision/scar where you had the implants put in.

You can do a lift at the same time as removal, but there are some plastic surgeons who would separate the procedures.

Your sensation is not likely to return, because it is probably reduced due to damage to the nerves during your initial procedure, which is common.

Removal will lead to increasing the droop you already have, so just imagine less fullness, and a bit more droop.

Chapel Hill Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 7 reviews

Silicone implant removal can be performed through the original inframammary incision.


Your implants can be removed through the original incision. There is no reason to lift the breasts immediately.  Many patients elect to have breast lift surgery at a later time if they are not pleased with their appearance.

I would strongly suspect that your original sensory loss will not be improved by removing the old implants..... If the capsules are removed as well, the sensory loss may even be worsened....

There is no substitute for discussing these issues with your plastic surgeon at the time of your consultation.

Best Regards,

Douglas J. Raskin, MD
Colorado Springs Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 61 reviews

Removing older implants

You can have your implants removed through the original incision.  You can absolutely just have them removed and see how your shape settles over time.  Your breasts will not appear lifted after removal, and will appear more flat in the upper poles.  But this may be just fine for you.  If you decide later that you want a lift, you can always come back for that.  No surgery at this point will bring back your nipple sensation.

Carmen Kavali, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 40 reviews

Removing breast implants and needing lifts

If your original incision to put the implants in was somewhere other than the inframammary crease you would still need an incision in the inframammary crease to take them out. This is one of several reasons why the inframammary crease is the best incision approach for putting implants in the first time -- many women need a revision or eventual replacement or removal. 
Loss of sensation with breast augmentation is not caused by the presence of the implant and removal of the implant will not change it unless the capsule is removed which might result in further nerve effects -- another reason not to remove the capsule if it is not abnormal.
I would agree with the responses that it's better to just remove the implants with a simple removal and then see what you want to do as regards a lift or even a replacement of the implant. The only reason to do the lift at the same time as the removal is that it would save cost and require (hopefully) only one operation instead of two. If you did the removal at the time of the lift, the removal becomes incidental to the larger and more complex lift procedure but the outcome is harder to control and predict.

Scott L. Replogle, MD
Boulder Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 1 review

Silicone breast implant removal - Where is the usual incision site?

Thank you for the question and picture. Removal of the breast implants can be done through the original inframammary incision. Whether or not you have the breast lift done at the same time is a personal choice;  either approach is acceptable.  Unfortunately, it is most likely that your sensation will not return.  I hope this, and the attached link, helps. Best wishes.

Silicone breast implant removal - Where is the usual incision site?

Your implants can be removed through the incision site used to put them in.  You are right to have the implants removed, and let the breast settle before having a lift for a better result.

Robert E. Zaworski, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 57 reviews

Implant removal

If you had an inframammary incision, this would probably be the best approach to remove your old implants. As for return of sensation, it is unlikely to show any improvement after they are removed since I assume the sensation was lost after the last operation so many years ago.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

Silicone breast implant removal - Where is the usual incision site?

The same incision site can be used.  You may have the implants removed and then wait for the tissue to contract to have the breast lift or have the breast lift at the same time.  The sensation is unlikely to return. 

I think that the advantage to doing the breast lift at the same time for you is that you will need a breast lift later, so having one surgery would be better than having two surgeries.

Kenneth Hughes, MD

Los Angeles, CA

Silicone breast implant removal

Usually the imframammary scar you already have would be a good one to use for the implant removal, and by all means avoid a lift for several monthsw because your skin will tighten after the implants are out but how much is not predictable. Your sensory loss will not be improved.

Ronald V. DeMars, MD
Portland Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 26 reviews

Removal of breast implants and possible lift

Removal of only the implants could be done with the same incision you has from before and even be done under local in the office. Removing the implants will lead to less volume of your breasts and more of a droopy appearance. A lift could be done at the same time as removal or after. There are higher risks if you nipples have to be moved long distances or if you are a smoker. I agree, it is unlikely that your sensation will return. Good luck


Gaurav Bharti, MD, FACS
Charlotte Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 112 reviews

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