4 months post op, How Long Do I Have to Wait After Implant Removed Before Getting New Ones Placed Back?

I had my breast augmentation 4 months ago, however I dislike the result. They are bigger than I wanted. I want to remove them. However maybe later I would want to replace them for smaller implants. How long is safe to wait for replacement after removal of previous implants?

Doctor Answers 6

Breast Implant Exchange

Thank you for your question.


Breast implants can be removed and new implants placed during the same surgery, which is commonly done for patient’s who wish for a different appearance.  Although breast implants can be exchanged at any time it is recommended to allow ample time for healing before deciding to make changes to the size or shape. Generally this process takes around six months to a year. If you are 100% sure at four months that you want to change the size or shape of your implants it may be an option but should be carefully thought out and discussed with your surgeon.


I hope this helps.

San Francisco Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 49 reviews

Options for implants

The implants can be replaced at the same time as the removal, but you can wait as long as you want.  However, if you are replacing the implants with smaller ones, a breast lift may be required if you have excess skin. 

D`Arcy Honeycutt, MD
Bismarck Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 22 reviews

Change to smaller implants

You are still not completely healed from your surgery; so I would recommend that you wait until you are at least 6 months post-op before making a final judgment about the result and whether you want the implants removed or exchanged.  If you do ultimately opt to have your implants changed, and if the size of a new implant is not too different from the original, a "removal and replacement" could be done in one procedure.  However, if there is a very large difference in the implants - particularly in base diameter - you would be putting a significantly smaller implant into a large pocket, and you could run into problems with displacement of the implant.  This is very hard to correct surgically and prone to recurrence. 

So, if you are thinking of moving down to a significantly smaller implant, I think waiting at least 3 months between procedures (to allow the pocket to contract) would be wise.

I hope this was helpful.  Good luck with you decision.

Robert Stroup, Jr., MD, FACS
Cleveland Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

Breast Implant Removal and Options?

Thank you for the question.

I would suggest that you think long and hard before having additional surgery performed. After careful consideration, if you decide that you do wish to have smaller breast implants placed,  then you should consider having this done at the same time as  the current breast implant removal surgery is performed.  Generally, removing and replacing implants is a technically simpler operation when done in the same operation,  compared to having to re-augment the breasts after breast implant removal has been done in the past.

Again, I think you have some careful thinking to do before you undergo any further surgery.

Best wishes.

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,488 reviews

Breast implat

You seem to have a difficult time making a decision whether you want breast implants or not. Every time you operate on the breast implants the second surgery is less predictable and may not achieve the results you desire.

Make you final decision before takeing any steps now, or removing implants and later wanting implants and so on.

Samir Shureih, MD
Baltimore Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 7 reviews

Implant exchange

Sorry that you are not happy with your current implants.  You can have them replaced with smaller ones at the same time as removal of the older ones.  If you want to wait, then you should wait at least 4 months for swelling to go down.

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