Is It Safe to Retain Breast Implant Life Long if There is No Health Problem?

I am 63 year old and had breast implant more than 20 years back. I do not have any problem with is so far. Kindly suggest whether I can retain it or shall I get it removed.

Doctor Answers 10

Silicone Implants

I know of several women who received implants and have never had to change them. It is a myth that implants must be changed every 10 years. Generally, if you don't have a problem with your implants and haven't noticed any pain or a change in appearance, then there is no need to replace them.  

It is important to note that while changes tend to be more obvious with saline implants, silicone implants that rupture may not be as noticeable and remain undetected for a longer time.

You should visit your surgeon or doctor regularly so that they may also examine you to make sure your implants are in good condition. 

Toronto Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 176 reviews

Changing or Removing Breast Implants

    Implants that are not giving you any problems may not need to be removed, particularly saline.  If they are silicone, you may have a rupture and not know it.  Some plastic surgeons recommend imaging to be sure, but you should discuss this with your plastic surgeon.

Kenneth B. Hughes, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 492 reviews

How long can you keep breast implants.

You left out the most important piece of information; do you have silicone or saoine implants.  If you have saline then I would not touch them if there are NO other problems or issues.  If you have silicone, change them out for saline or silicone, or remove them if you wish.

Talmage J. Raine, MD, FACS
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Further Surgery Necessary if No Problems with Breast Implants?

Thank you for the question.

If you are happy with the appearance/shape... of your breasts then there is no need to have any further breast surgery performed.  In the event that you have silicone breast implants in place, imaging studies ( preferably MRI) may be indicated to rule out “silent leakage”.

 Best wishes.

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,487 reviews

Implant Lifespan

if you are not having problems then there is no reason to disturb the implants.  I would recommend an examination by a board certified plastic surgeon if you want to have more peace of mind.


Dr. ES

Breast implant and longevity

I always say if they "ain't broke, you do not have to fix'em."  They can stay in forever if they are not giving you a problem.

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

Breast Implant Replacement

This is a good question, so thanks for asking!  If you are happy with your implants and are not experiencing any problems with them, they do not need to be routinely replaced.  Make sure you are still getting your regular annual mammograms and routine checkups with your plastic surgeon to help ensure the integrity of the implants.  Best wishes!

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

Implant life

If you have been completing your monthly self exams, doing your annual mammograms and/or ultrasounds and everything is fine (no evidence of implant rupture) and cosmetic you are still happy with the look and feel of your implants, there is no need to have them replaced.    In this case, the reason to opt for revisional surgery would be cosmetic - you would like to improve the appearance of your breasts.  Hope this helps.

Dr. Basu

Houston, TX

C. Bob Basu, MD, FACS
Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 209 reviews

Happy with 20 year old implants- keep them or take them out?? Ask Dr Ellen

Hello Onan,

It sounds like you are happy with the long term result (your shape, look) and are not experiencing any medical problems (mammograms OK, physical exams OK, no physical complaints).  Under these circumstances, it doesn't sound as though there is any reason to have them removed.  And if that is the case, why undergo an elective operation with its associated costs, risks and complications that you do not need?  To accomplish what??

If you have concerns about them and would like peace of mind that everything is absolutely "OK," see your surgeon for an evaluation.  Otherwise, enjoy!

Thanks for asking!  Dr Ellen


Ellen A. Mahony, MD
Westport Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

Lifelong devices?

Implants are not meant to be life-long devices.

If you have silicone gel implants, you should have them checked with an ultrasound, to make sure they are still intact.

If you have saline-filled implants, you can wait until they deflate, which will eventually happen.


See your local PS for an evaluation.

Thomas Fiala, MD
Orlando Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 79 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.