Risks of Autoimmune Response from Breast Lift?

I have an elevated ANA titer, but I have never dx with Lupus. I am considering a Breast Lift. I worry about adding implants because of the possibility of an autoimmune response. Also, I am taking Plaquinil.

Doctor Answers 8

Autoimmune Response with Breast Lift

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All surgical procedures carry some degree of risk. This happens less with lifts than reductions but is still possible Occasionally, minor complications occur and do not affect the surgical outcome. Major complications associated with this procedure are rare. The suitability of the breast lift procedure and specific risks may be determined during you consultation.

Your medical concerns about adding implants are understandable and you should discuss this with your selected PS, and likely not move forward with anything which you are uncomfortable. It would be best to only take on a procedure that you feel will work best with your body and other medical situations unless your concerns are resolved with your surgeon.

Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 116 reviews

Autoimmune Response with Breast Surgery?

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Thank you for the question.

Although there has been no scientifically based  association between breast implants and autoimmune disease,  some women still have concerns. Generally, I suggest for your own peace of mind,  that you avoid breast implants until these concerns no longer exists for you.  Assuming breast lifting will achieve the results you are looking for avoid breast implants until you are comfortable with the safety profile of breast implants. 

Best wishes.

Breast Lift (Mastopexy) and Sub-clinical Lupus

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I agree with my colleagues regarding immunogenicity and breast implants. This once lucrative scare tactic used by plaintiffs' attorneys has been debunked repeatedly years ago. You are NOT going to get or worsen a pre-existing autoimmune disorder.

In truth, you should be more immediately concerned with your use of PLAQUENIL. This anti-malaria drug is also used in LUPUS ERYTHEMATOSUS AND RHEUMATOID ARTHRITIS has been associate with blindness from retina damage, "bleaching of hair, balding, itching, skin and mucosal pigmentation, sensitivity to light, and skin eruptions (including Stevens-Johnson syndrome, and others).

Dr. P. Aldea

Peter A. Aldea, MD
Memphis Plastic Surgeon

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Autoimmune disease not caused by implants

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It sounds like your concern is for implants. I agree with Dr. Rand that there is no evidence of a connection between breast implants and autoimmune desease, and in fact there is evidence to the contrary. The idea of such a relationship was first proposed about 20 years ago, and it was one of the reasons the FDA issued a moratorium on silicone implants in 1991. As a result of this, congress commissioned a comprehensive review from the National Institute of Medicine.

Their report, published in 2000, concluded among other things that "a review of the toxicology studies of silicones and other substances known to be in breast implants does not provide a basis for health concerns." The implants are again on the market. If you feel that the implants will give you a better result from surgery, you should not be dissuaded by the theoretical but disproven risk of autoimmune problems.

Richard Baxter, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 59 reviews

Breast lifts and autoimmune disorders

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I know of no association of breast lifting with automimmune disorders. Certainly this has been study quite extensively with implants as well. As to the healing process this will depend upon the type of autoimmune problem that you have.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Implants with breast lift

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There is no data to suggest any link with autoimmune disease and breast implants. I would certainly discuss it further with your Plastic Surgeon and consult with your rheumatologist also. The added benefit of an implant with a breast lift is the additional fullness you get in the upper pole. 

Robert M. Jensen, MD
Medford Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 46 reviews

Autoimmune disease and breast implants

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There is no known risk of an "autoimmune response" with the use of breast implants, with or without a breast lift. Several large studies completed in response to the breast implant moratorium in 1991 by the FDA have shown no significant increase in autoimmune disease in patients with implants versus those without implants. Other studies completed during the '90s and early '00s also showed no difference in breast cancer rates or breast cancer stage between the two groups.

Ricardo Izquierdo, MD
Oak Brook Plastic Surgeon

No risk of autoimmune disease from a lift

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 Breast lifts don't have any risk of autoimmune disease whatsoever.  If you add an implant augmentation I would also submit that the data do not support any increased risk either.  But if you really don't want to worry, just do the lift alone. 

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.