After Breast Augmentation I've Been Told I'll Need Antibiotics Every Time I Have any Procedure, True?

My PS says that after my BA(silicone) I have to be treated like having e.g. an artificial heart valve, so everytime I have any procedure done (including going to the dentist) I should ask for antibiotics. Is that true? What does this include? Do I need antibiotics everytime I have my teeth cleaned (every 6months!)?? Does it just mean 'surgery'? During what 'procedures' do I need prophylactic antibiotics? What about sicknesses (cold, flu), do I always need antibiotics then, too?

Doctor Answers 10

Prophylactic antibiotics after breast augmentation

I do not routinely advise patients to take antibiotics prophylactically for other procedures after breast augmentation.  There is nothing in the literatue that I kowo of that supports this recommendation.

New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 28 reviews

Antibiotics after breast augmentation

There is no consensus on whether antibiotics should be used around the time of any subsequent procedure.  I believe that it is a good idea early on, before the scar tissue (capsule) around your implant is mature, but after about 6 months the benefit is questionable.

Dennis Dass, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 162 reviews

Antibiotic use after breast augmentation

Antibiotic use after breast augmentation will likely become a very discussed topic in the next several years after more studies are published about the risk of capsular contracture.  True implant infections are relatively rare so having antibiotics long term after breast augmentation is unnecessary to prevent  clinical infections.

More information is developing about reasons for accelerated capsular contracture and most of it points to subclinical contamination around the implant from bacteria.  

This information is still too new to draw any practice guidelines about long term use of antibiotics after breast augmentation, but that is probably what your surgeon is thinking about.

Richard H. Fryer, MD
Salt Lake City Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 271 reviews

After Breast Augmentation I've Been Told I'll Need Antibiotics Every Time I Have any Procedure, True?

I think we used to think that, but my feeling is that the latest studies on breast implants and antibiotics show that they may not even be needed after the original surgery, let alone down the road and dental work...Most of us feel better giving our patients antibiotics for a few days after surgery but that may change with time, but I do not have my patients do anything after dental work.

John J. Corey, MD
Phoenix Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 44 reviews

Breast Augmentation & Prophylactic Antibiotics

I personally do not ask my patients to take prophylactic antibiotics before teeth cleaning, etc.  To my knowledge, I have never had an infected breast implant in over 25 years of augmentation mammoplasties.

John Whitt, MD (retired)
Louisville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 2 reviews

Antibiotics needed for dental work after implants?

This is an interesting idea, though we have been performing breast augmentation for 30 years, and we never recommend antibiotics with any subsequent dental or surgical procedure. After implants are settled in and fully healed most would agree, with or without antibiotics infection is a very rare event indeed. Medical evidence to the contrary is lacking.

Best of luck, Peter Johnson, MD

Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 42 reviews

Antibiotics after Breast Augmentation

The advice you received is related to the total hip and knee literature. The more recent literature shows that patients seed more bacteria during flossing than during procedures. I do not use antibiotics after augmentation. That said, I might recommend them if you had something done in the first 2 weeks after augmentation.

David Janssen, MD, FACS
Oshkosh Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Antibiotics not needed for any procedure after breast augmentation

The same rules apply for women with breast implants as for anyone who has any foreign material implanted in her body (e.g. prosthetic joint, vascular stent, heart valve, etc.).  That is, if you are going to undergo any procedure which carries with it the risk of getting bacteria in your blood stream, you should have antibiotic prophylaxis.  In general, those procedures are the ones involving the GI tract (e.g., dental procedures, colonoscopy) and GYN procedures (e.g., D&C. hysterroscopy, cone biopsy).  "Clean" procedures, such as those performed on uncontaminated skin, require no antibiotics.

Robert Stroup, Jr., MD, FACS
Cleveland Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

Using Antibiotics Before Procedures After Having Breast Augmentation

In my opinion and in my practice, I do not recommend taking antibiotics before having procedures; like having teeth cleaning.  There is no hard scientific data that I know of stating that is it necessary.

Jeffrey Hartog, MD
Orlando Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 60 reviews

Breast Augmentation and Antibiotics before Procedures?

Thank you for the question.

Although you will find differing opinions on the necessity/efficacy of antibiotics prior to procedures,  I know of no scientific basis/study  that documents a  decrease incidence  of encapsulation or any other problem associated with breast implants.

I hope this helps.

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,487 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.