How is Breast Implant Replacement Surgery Done?

I have textured silicone implants in a subglandular placement and want to replace them with smooth silicone implants under the muscle. Will the new implants be placed in at the time of removal of the textured ones? Or will it have to be done in two separate procedures so I can heal from the first surgery first. I hate to have to walk around with deflated boobs for months.

Doctor Answers 22

Breast Implant Removal Surgery - What to Expect

It’s not unusual for patients who have breast implants on top of the pectoralus muscles to request relocation to a sub-muscular position.  In the vast majority of cases this can be easily accomplished by simply removing the implants and replacing them in a sub-muscular pocket.  In most cases, this maneuver is associated with excellent aesthetic results and high satisfaction rates. 

Implant repositioning may be undertaken for a variety of reasons.  Two of the more common causes include capsular contracture and the development of breast sag.  These represent unique situations that may require additional surgery.

When severe capsular contractures are present, it may be necessary to perform a capsulectomy.  In other cases where severe breast sag is present, breast lift surgery may be necessary.  Under these circumstances, it may be necessary to stage these procedures to optimize the result. 

If you’re considering implant repositioning it’s appropriate to consult a board certified plastic surgeon.  This surgeon should be able to formulate an appropriate treatment plan for your condition.  

Omaha Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 194 reviews

Implant exchange.

Implant exchange is a very common procedure.  There are so many women out there (myself included) who have had their implants in for many years.  It is not uncommon for a woman's body to change over the years and she may decide to get new implants for any one of a number of reasons. Common reasons include weight gain or loss since original augmentation, pregnancy or pregnancies that cause significant change in breast shape or size or simple desire for larger or smaller implants.  Whatever the reason, a woman has a number of options when considering implant exchange.  This can almost always be done in one operation. 

Mary Gingrass, MD
Nashville Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 52 reviews

Replacement of Breast Implants to Submuscular Position?

Thank you for the question.

Generally, it is possible to replace implants under the pectoralis muscle (dual plane).   I usually do this procedure (removal of sub glandular implants and replacement in the submuscular position)  in a single stage.

However, the major issue of concern is the overlying breast tissue and skin and whether further surgery will be necessary to achieve the aesthetic  results desired.  For example, some patients who have implants replaced into the sub pectoral space may benefit from breast lifting to achieve the desired goals.

This type of surgery does require some level of experience. It would behoove you to seek consultation with well experienced board-certified plastic surgeons well-versed in revisionary breast surgery.

I hope this helps.

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,499 reviews

Removal and replacement of breast implants

In almost every case, the removal of subglandular and replacement with submuscular implants is done as one procedure. Consult with an experienced, board certified plastic surgeon. Upon examination, your surgeon will be able to discuss the risks and benefits of performing these procedures as one. Best wishes!

Christine Sullivan, MD
Columbus Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 34 reviews

Replacing and Repositioning Implants Can Be Done in One Procedure

In my practice, older textured subglandular implants can be replaced with smooth implants under the muscle in one procedure.

Paul C. Zwiebel, MD
Denver Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 41 reviews

Breast implant revision surgery

I typically recommend removal and replacement with smooth silicone implants in the submuscular position for patients that present with subglandular implants. If you need a lift, it can be done at the time of surgery, or in a delayed fashion. I recommend up-sizing the implant about 75 cc when switching to the submuscular plane- this position tends to 'blunt' the volume of an implant.

Scott C. Sattler, MD, FACS
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 65 reviews

Implant exchange under the muscle - silicone breast implants

There are a number of very valuable reasons to exchange your implant position to one that is under the muscle.  I perform these implant exchanges in one operation ,unless significant nipple repositioning is planned. 

Raffy Karamanoukian, MD, FACS
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 94 reviews

Implant replacement in one operation

Most of the time, the exchange of breast implants is done in one operation.  This is true for changing implant location (from sub-glandular to sub-muscular), implant texture or implant composition (saline to silicone).  There are some situations in which your surgeon may suggest removing the old implants and waiting to place new implants, but these are usually related to specific patient characteristics or infectious issues.  Start with a consultation with a board-certified plastic surgeon and you should be good from there.

Jason Brett Lichten, MD
Columbus Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

Removal and replacement of implants usually accomplished with one operation.

Your problem is fairly simple.  The implants are easily removed and replaced at the same time.  I'm not sure why you want to put the new implants in a different location, but if there is good reason, it is easily done.

Vincent N. Zubowicz, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 36 reviews

You can remove and replace implants at the same time

There is no need to wait months between having your implants removed and having new ones placed. I often do this very surgery at the same time.  The old pocket is removed and/or closed down, the new pocket is created, the new implant placed, a drain is left in the old pocket space to prevent fluid collections after surgery, and a lift is done (if needed).  All in one surgery.

Carmen Kavali, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 43 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.