Breast Implant Removal Recovery

Recovery? Pain? I was told by my surgeon that he could remove them under straight local. They are not ruptured. Is this true? I'm 30 years old. I had silicone 400cc breast implants placed 3 years ago. I was a fuller A cup and went up to a DD (against my wishes, I wanted a C) I'm a very active person and have hated them ever since. I do not wish to have them replaced in fear of future surgery, problems, etc. It was an unfortunate circumstance that I just want erased from my history.

Doctor Answers 36

Implant Removal Can Be Done With Local Anesthesia

Yes, you can remove implants with just local anesthesia, and return to work immediately.

Expert opinion does vary on the need for removing the capsule (capsulectomy) at the time of implant removal (explantation). Capsulectomy s done to make sure the space created for the implant will seal closed after removal.  If it does not, fluid (serum) can accumulate in the space, creating breast fullness, asymmetry, and even the feeling of fluid moving in the pocket.

Capsulectomy would better be performed with sedation (or general anesthesia) for your comfort.  The use of drains for about a week is common with capsulectomy.  Your return to work depends on your surgeon's counsel in this regard.

Denver Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 20 reviews


The peer reviewed literature in plastic surgery recommends removal of the entire capsule in order to avoid problems such as infection, fluid collection, and problems with cancer detection.  Also the pocket of scar tissue does not dissolve over time (it may shrink in size but is there years after implant removal). 

Susan Kolb, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Breast Implant Removal Under Local Anesthesia.

Although it is technically possible, it could potentially be uncomfortable.  Simply removing the implants may not give you the look that you desire, either.  You should carefully discuss this with a board certified plastic surgeon and decide what will give you an attractive appearance to your breast but meet the goals of your active lifestyle.

Dustin L. Reid, MD
Austin Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 71 reviews

Implant removal with local anesthesia

Breast implant removal under local anesthesia is a very simple procedure for the surgeon and the patient.  Virtually painless during and after.

Having had 400 cc implants for 3 years there will be stretch of the overlying tissue.  You may consider asking your plastic surgeon if you are a candidate for internally supporting and lifting the breast.  This involves suturing the implant pocket closed while lifting the nipple and breast.  This can be easily done with local anesthesia as well if you wish.

York J. Yates, MD - Utah.

York Jay Yates, MD
Salt Lake City Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 116 reviews

Breast implant removal recovery

A simple explantation of an unruptured silicone implant usually has minimal pain associated with the procedure. I would expect a recovery of 2-3 days. If a capsulectomy has to be performed, then I would expect a one week recovery secondary to the bruising and swelling. I do not perform these procedure under local. I prefer a hospital setting with general anesthesia to minimize patient discomfort, muscle spasm,  and bacterial contamination.

Can Implant Removal be done with Local Anesthesia

The answer is "may be". If you do not need a capsulectomy, they can be removed under local anesthesia with minimal pain and recovery. If you need a capsulectomy, the procedure would have to be done under general anesthesia with a more extensive surgery, drains, and recovery.

Lu-Jean Feng, MD
Cleveland Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 63 reviews

Recovery Time After Breast Implant Removal

This is a simple procedure and can be done under local anesthesia or intravenous sedation. The recovery is very quick and most patients return to work within 1-3 days.

Breast Implant Removal Recovery is Very Straight Forward

If your implants are not ruptured then removal is a very simple process. It is very easy to do under local anesthesia. Afterwards, it is just a matter of letting the wound heal. I generally let my patients return to doing everything within one to two days.

I hope that helps.

Best regards.

Brian Windle, MD
Kirkland Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 39 reviews

Breast implant removal

Most newer implants can be removed under local anesthesia with minimal recovery. If the entire capsule needs to be removed,  the recovery will be much longer. 

Recovery time after breast implant removal

The recovery after a breast implant removal procedure is very quick.  Most women can return to work in 3 days.  Any type of anesthesia can be utilized, whatever you and your surgeon are most comfortable using, local, local with sedation or general anesthesia.

Good Luck!

David Finkle, MD
Omaha Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 62 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.