How long do I have to wait to exchange implants to a bigger size?

I am 6 weeks post op and I am 99% sure I went too small and want to change the size of my implants. How long do I have to wait to get them redone? Also does it cost as much as the first time?

Doctor Answers 5

Implant exchange

I recommend that you  wait 3 to 6 months to allow the breasts to become soft and  the post operative swelling to resolve. This may allow for a better selection of the larger implants.

Healing

you need some time to heal from your first surgery, prob 3-4 months, but also depends on your chest dimensions, you may need the tissues to stretch and relax before replacing with something bigger. As for cost, your same surgeon may cut you a break, a different surgeon won't care when you had your first aug, their fee is their fee. Best of luck

Timeframe to Go Larger?

Most surgeons want the healing to be completely done before any type of revision.  This is usually about three months from the original surgery.  However, going larger in implant size means you need to have the room to accommodate a larger implant.  Some patients can accommodate a larger implant pretty quickly, while others need over a year for the tissues to relax enough to accommodate a bigger implant.  I hope this helps.

How long do I have to wait to exchange implants to a bigger size?

I suggest waiting at least 3-6 months before deciding to remove and replace your implants with larger ones. There is definitely a physiologic and "psychological" (body image)  adaptation process that occurs, at differing rates for every patient, for patients who undergo any type of aesthetic surgery, including breast  augmentation surgery.  



Many of my patients report that as the swelling around the breast implants (for example, in the sternal area) decreases, they feel that their breasts appear more projecting. Also, in my opinion, the "drop and fluff” phenomenon does hold some validity; as breast implants “settle”, many patients feel that their breasts actually look larger. 



Generally speaking, the best online advice I can give to ladies who are considering revisionary breast augmentation surgery (regarding breast implant size/profile selection) is:



1. Concentrate on choosing your plastic surgeon carefully. Concentrate on appropriate training, certification, and the ability of the plastic surgeon to achieve the results you are looking for. Ask to see lots of examples of his/her work.



2. Have a full discussion and communication regarding your desired goals with your plastic surgeon. This communication will be critical in determining breast implant size/type/profile will most likely help achieve your goals. 

In my practice, the use of photographs of “goal” pictures (and breasts that are too big or too small) is very helpful. I have found that the use of words such as “natural” or "D or DD cup” etc means different things to different people and therefore prove unhelpful.

Also, as you know, cup size varies depending on who makes the bra; therefore, discussing desired cup size may also be inaccurate. 



3. Once you feel you have communicated your goals clearly, allow your plastic surgeon to use his/her years of experience/judgment to choose the breast implant size/profile that will best meet your goals. Again, in my practice, this decision is usually made during surgery ( after the use of temporary intraoperative sizers). Viewing the patient's chest wall in the upright and supine positions, with temporary sizes in place, help select the best breast implant size/profile for the specific patient.



Policy regarding coverage of expenses for revisionary surgery will vary from office to office and probably on a case-by-case basis as well. For example, costs of revisionary surgery may range from full charges, anesthesia/surgery center fees only (waived surgeon's fees), to discounted surgeon's fees...  


I hope this, and the attached link (dedicated to revisionary breast augmentation surgery concerns), helps. Best wishes.


Larger implants

In general, I tell patients to try and wait around 6 months before revision surgery. However in your case, if you are really convinced that you want to go larger, then starting at 3 months can be reasonable. 

The price will really depend on your area and surgeon. Discuss with your original surgeon your desires and go from there. Good luck.

Khashayar Mohebali, MD, FACS
Bay Area Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 10 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.