Should I Have my Implants Removed if I Suspect They Are the Cause of my Sudden Joint and Muscle Pain?

I've had my 300cc breast implants for 15 weeks and over the last 3 weeks I've been suffering with arthritis like symptoms in my shoulders, wrists and hands. Prior to my procedure I ran 30 to 50 miles a week, cycled 50 miles a week, swam twice weekly and I did yoga 3 days a week. Now joint pain prevents me from sleeping through the night and I can't work out because my joints are swollen and inflamed. I believe my body is rejecting the implants. If I have them removed will I have my healthy body back?

Doctor Answers 6

Implants and joint pain

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

It is exceedingly unlikely that your symptoms are caused by your implants.  This issue has been studied extensively, and the conclusion is that silicone implants do not cause autoimmune diseases or joint problems.  Before jumping to conclusions and pursuing surgical intervention, I would advise you to talk to your primary doctor about your sudden symptoms and have that worked up medically.

Joint inflammation - could it be related to breast implants?

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

It is highly unlikely that the symptoms you describe are related to your breast implants, which were put in around 3 months before your symptoms started. Some of the most detailed studies on the potential effects of silicone implants was done on exactly this topic and conclusively showed no relationship between breast implants and inflammatory joint conditions or other automimmune conditions.

I hope this puts your mind at rest, however you should get your joints checked out by a certified rheumatologist



Should I Have my Implants Removed?

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Before considering removal of the implants, a visit to your primary physician and then, if no diagnosis or resolution of your symptoms, a rheumatologist. 

I can certainly understand that the timing makes you suspicious that the implants could be the cause, there have been many large studies done without finding a link between implants and arthritic diseases. 

There is no certainty that removal of the implants will have any impact on the symptoms you are experiencing. 

Start with your own physician.

Thanks and best wishes. 

Jourdan Gottlieb, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon

Breast implants do not cause joint pain.

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Removing your implants will not help any joint pathology.  You might benefit psychologically from explantation, but not physiologically.

Implants are not known to cause disease

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

and this was the conclusion from the Institute of Medicine in 2000 after everyone was claiming every ailment due to their implants.  Nothing really new has surfaced since then and it is unlikely your implants are the cause of your symptoms.  Regardless, if you're convinced and wish to remove them, you certainly can have it done but no one will assure you that your symptoms will go with them.  Consider seeing a rheumatologist if your aches continue to see if anything else could be happening before having the implants removed.  Best wishes...

Curtis Wong, MD
Redding Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 33 reviews

Breast Augmentation and Arthritis like Symptoms?

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Although no one can tell you exactly what will happen if your breast implants are removed, it is most probable that you will continue to experience the current “joint and muscle pains” after the breast implants are removed.  In other words, your current arthritis like symptoms are probably unrelated to the breast implants. I would suggest that you focus on finding the best rheumatologist in your area and  obtaining accurate diagnosis and treatment.

 Anecdotally, I have recently operated on a few patients who have had their breast implants removed in the past ( secondary to similar concerns that you are experiencing) and  who  have subsequently chosen to have breast re augmentation ( once they found that there medical concerns did not improve after breast implant removal.

   Hopefully with accurate diagnosis and treatment you will be able to return to your active lifestyle in the future.

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.