I had BA almost 10 years ago. How often is it recommended to have your implants replaced? Mine are saline implants.

Doctor Answers 10

I had BA almost 10 years ago. How often is it recommended to have your implants replaced? Mine are saline implants

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On average, implants last 10-15 years. However, I've known many women who have had them for longer without having any issues. So if you are having issues (hardness, pain, displacement, possible deflation, etc.), best to get checked out by a board certified plastic surgeon for a possible revision with change of implants. If not, however, enjoy your implants for the time being and get them replaced when you need to! Hope this helps.

When to Replace Breast Implants.

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Hello, and thanks for this often asked question. As long as you remain happy with the size and shape of your breasts, the main thing that could lead to replacing your implants over time would be implant rupture. When one looks at rupture rates from studies done by the FDA for silicone gel implants at 10 years post implantation, the rates vary from 10% to 15%. Saline implants like yours have a similar rate of rupture. Some studies quote 1% per year, making it around a 10% chance at 10 years, while other studies have saline rupture rates at several percentage points higher than silicone gel implants at 10 years. The main point is, at 10 years after surgery neither implant has rupture rates higher than 15%, which is, overall, fairly low.
For you, in the event of a rupture the implant will deflate and the breast will lose volume immediately (or within a few days) and you will know what has happened. This is not a clinical emergency, and the saline is absorbed harmlessly into your system. This is why I tell patients if 10 years go by and you are still generally happy with your size and shape there is no great reason to replace your implants. Patients with silicone gel implants are recommended to check the status of the implant with an MRI (I recommend every 5 years, but the FDA recommends more), as the gel stays very close to the implant (usually within the scar tissue capsule that has formed around the implant) and it is typically difficult to tell by examination whether there is actually a rupture.
For saline implants especially, there really is no accepted time frame for replacement. The % chance that you will have a rupture will continue to go up 1-2% per year as the implant ages, but it may never happen! I recommend stopping in for an exam and conversation with your doctor every year or two to discuss things.
Hope this helps!

I had BA almost 10 years ago. How often is it recommended to have your implants replaced?

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There is no time frame as to when or if you need to exchange your breast implants. I have heard from patients that they have heard that breast implants need to be changed every 10 years. The only reason you need to exchange your breast implants is if you are having a problem with them or if you would like to change the size.
Some of the potential complications that may arise would be deflation, capsular contracture, bottoming out (or other type of displacement concerns), or just size change.   In other words, if you are happy with the size/shape/positioning of your breast implants and are having no problems, you do not need to do anything.  Best wishes.

OK to leave alone

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Saline implants will alert you if they rupture.
You will deflate.
If they are fine, leave them alone and enjoy.

Lifespan Of Implants

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All implants are man made and have a maximum lifespan of 10-15
years, so they need to be replaced during your lifetime. Regular follow up appointments are suggested with your surgeon at least once a year.


Rod J. Rohrich, MD
Dallas Plastic Surgeon

Breast Implants after 10 years

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Thank you for a great question.

There is no need to replace breast implants just because of their age.  
Yes; studies have shown 1% per year increase rupture rate; so at 10 years your rupture rate is higher (about 10%) but that does not mean you necessarily need to change the implants.
You may consider remove and replacement of the implants if you have capsular contracture (the capsule around the implant becomes palpable, then visible, then eventually painful), or you are unhappy with the size, shape, or feel of the implants.

If saline implants rupture (or leak), you will notice this yourself (meaning you most likely will not additional studies).  There will not be any emergencies or medical issues.  

You will simply follow up with your plastic surgeon and she/he will discuss many options for your new implants and type of surgery.

All the best wishes,

If there is no problem, there is nothing to fix

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If you have no problems with the implants at this stage they do not need tone replaced.  Keep yearly follow up appointments with the surgeon and if there is a problem see them right away.  otherwise they don't expire.

Saline implants

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Thank you for the question and I tell my patients particularly with saline implants "if it ain't broke don't fix it" and if it does rupture you will deflate alerting you to the need to switch implants.

Dr. Corbin

Saline Implant Replacement

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As long as you are happy with your results, you don't need to replace your implants. When one fails (ruptures), it will deflate, letting you know it's time for new implants.
Best of luck!

BA going on 10 years

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Hello and thank you for your question. As long as you are happy with the size, shape and feeling of your breasts/implants, there is no reason to have them replaced. Implants have a quoted rupture rate of around 1% per year, so around 10% after 10 years. If the saline implant ruptures, the breast will be deflated as you will naturally absorb the water/saline once inside the implant and your breast will flatten from the loss of volume.

Benjamin J. Cousins MD
Board Certified Plastic Surgeon

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.