Causes of Swollen Lymph Nodes, Aching Years After Breast Augmentation?

I am 8 yrs post breast augmentation with saline implants and have swollen lymph nodes axillary, achiness and soreness in my right breast. Dr says implant intact... What is causing this?

Doctor Answers 6

Swollen lymph nodes after saline breast augmentation

Thanks for your question -

New masses in the axilla or breast are something that you should have checked out. There are many causes for lymph node swelling but one of the concerns is that this may represent breast cancer.

I know that's a scary thing to hear and it may be nothing but it absolutely shoud be checked.

Make an appointment today!

San Francisco Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 49 reviews

Breast implants do not cause swollen lymph glands.


I don't know what is causing your symptoms, but it is not your breast implants. Implants are really inert. You need a thorough medical evaluation.

George J. Beraka, MD (retired)
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Swollen lymph nodes

Swollen lymph nodes in the axilla could be a sign of many things. You could have inflammation from something, an infection, breast cancer to name a few. See your doctor.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

I agree, you should have this evaluated

It would be very unlikely to have the implant surgery be the source of the swollen lymph glands.  You sent this awhile ago so I hope you have sought medical attention. Evaluation would consist of the clinical exam, possible MRI and even a biopsy.  If you have not seen a doctor, please do so ASAP!

Michael Kulick, MD, DDS
San Francisco Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 11 reviews

Swollen Axillary Lymph Nodes

You need to see your physician as soon as possible. It is highly unlikely that your current condition has any relationship to the saline implants. The enlarged lymph nodes in your axilla could be a sign of breast cancer. There is no evidence of a link between implants and breast cancer. However, there is a possibility that the implants could lead to a delay in diagnosis of a breast cancer. This could be something else, but again you need to see your physician as soon as possible.

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

Enlarged armpit lymph nodes (axillary lymphadenopathy) years after breast implant augmentation surgery

I have occasionally observed this but do not have an explanation. In rare instances a polyurethane implant can cause a pronounced inflammatory response with lymphadenopathy while in other instances low grade bacterial colonization (biofilm) can do the same. The key thing is to see your surgeon and ensure that it is not a sign of another more concerning infectious, inflammatory, or neoplastic process.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 81 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.