Loss of Sensation After Breast Augmentation Due to Ruptured Implants. Is This Permanent? (photo)

After 28 years my silicone implants ruptured. 5 weeks ago I had them removed & replaced going from a 250 cc to 425 cc, not becos I wanted bigger breasts but due to the stretched skin . The Dr had to remove massive amounts of silicone that had encapsulated in chunks as well as loose silicon within the original capsule. I have lost sensation mainly in the area under my rt armpit, where a large mass of silicone was removed & rt nipple. What is the timeframe of regaining sensation? Is there hope?

Doctor Answers 5

Hope for Recovery of Sensation after Breast Surgery?

Thank you for the question and pictures. Given the complexty of the procedure you have undergone, I am not too surprised to hear that you have loss of sensation at this point. However, there is significant hope;  sensation may gradually recover over the course of the next few months/years. Unfortunately, there is not much that you or your surgeon can do at this point;  time will tell. Best wishes.      

San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,499 reviews

Loss of Sensation After Breast Augmentation Due to Ruptured Implants. Is This Permanent?

Great posted photos. Maybe there is hope but if after 18 months there is no sensation than it is permanent. Sorry. 

Darryl J. Blinski, MD
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 174 reviews

Sensation Loss After Surgery

(Video included - click more to view) Sensation can be lost after surgery from cutting the nerve or from stretching the nerve, and recovery will depend on which occurred. With ruptured silicone gel implants, especially if they are more than 10 years old, the sooner the leak is treated, the less of a problem it is to clean out.

If the silicone was surrounding the nerve and was excised with the gel, sensation will return slowly beginning at the periphery of the numb area. In general, no recovery is noted for the first 4 weeks, and then sensation may slowly return.

At first you may feel odd sensations, and as these resolve more normal sensation returns. If the nerves where stretched, recovery is more likely, but still may take a year or two to stop improving. So yes, there is still hope. Good luck and your recovery.

Joseph Mele, MD
Walnut Creek Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Loss of sensation

Loss of sensation in the nipple/areola is fortunately an uncommon occurrence.
In my experience, permanent loss of of sensation may be due to stretching of the sensory nerves by using very large implants causing a stretch injury or pressure on the nerves, extent of dissection which can damage the nerves, and the size of implant. I find that the location of the incision is not usually the reason for loss of sensation.
Choosing a board-certified plastic surgeon is important when considering surgery, as it will lower your chances of complications.

Larry S. Nichter, MD, MS, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 157 reviews

Numbness After Breast Revision

It is not surprising that you have some areas of numbness following this type of surgery, although I understand you are not excited about it.  Unfortunately, it's not predictable whether this is permanent or not, but return of sensation can take up to two years if it does return.  Be patient and optimistic.  Best wishes!

Brian Howard, MD (retired)
Alpharetta Plastic Surgeon
4.3 out of 5 stars 19 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.