Sudden Change in Breast Implant Size?

Yesterday morning when I woke up and noticed the left one was noticably smaller. It is also more moveable and less firm. I have 450cc on Left and 475cc on the Right saline implants, under the muscle. I called the surgeon, and he doesn't think I have ruptured the implant.

At the last check up he said swelling was gone, but to keep wearing the band. Upon palpation I can still feel a signigicant amount of saline inside, but I am wondering why this one lost so much volume. Is it a leaking valve?

Doctor Answers 6

Leaking implant

It is possible for an implant, like a tire, to have a slow leak rather than a total deflation. This may be what you are experiencing so I would recommend that you visit your plastic surgeon for evaluation.

New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 39 reviews

Saline Breast Implants - Ruptured, Leaking, Mechanical Problems

HI bubbles1016,

With saline implants it will typically become very clear very quickly.  If there is any sort of a mechanical problem - such as an out-and-out rupture, a deflation, a leak (whether a defective valve or from any other cause) the implant will almost always continue to get smaller and eventually be completely deflated.  This process can take a few weeks but more typically takes just a few days.  For a couple of days you're not quite sure what's going on, and then it becomes very clear.  I have had some patients who developed problems with their saline implants as a result (most likely) of mammograms but in most cases you never really fine out why it happened.

So, although it's not terribly comforting, just wait a bit.  Stay in touch with your PS and it will become pretty clear pretty quickly.  If the implants are not having a mechanical problem, then it's just a question of the swelling going down differently, and at a different pace (from one side to the other).

I hope that this helps, and good luck,

Dr. E

Alan M. Engler, MD, FACS
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 125 reviews

Maybe your breast implants ruptured


Sudden changes with decreases in breast implant size make me think of rupture, especially if they are saline implants. Follow this along with your surgeon and I'll keep my fingers crossed for you that things are fine.

John P. Di Saia, MD
Orange Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 27 reviews

Breast implant deflation or rupture

What you describe sounds a lot like the implant either deflated or ruptured. I can't think of any other reason why or how one side can suddenly become a lot smaller than the other. Make sure your surgeon carefully examines you. If there is still some doubt, you may want to get an ultrasound of the breasts to confirm or rule out a deflation/rupture.

John Diaz, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 34 reviews

Only your surgeon can tell you for sure

Hi there-

The only way to know with any certainty whether you have a leaking or ruptured implant is to pay a visit to your surgeon's office and have him/her examine you.

With saline implants, as long as you are beyond the period of postoperative swelling, any short term change in the volume of one breast compared to the other should suggest leaking and a visit to your surgeon.

I hope we're wrong, but you should stop in to be sure...

Armando Soto, MD, FACS
Orlando Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 157 reviews

Possibly an implant deflation

In the absence of any trauma or reason for one breast to swell or be larger, a smaller breast implies that you may have an implant deflation. Often times there isn't a preceeding event and it "just happens". Get in to see your plastic surgeon and they can give you a better idea. I hope this helps

Dr Edwards

Michael C. Edwards, MD, FACS
Las Vegas Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 35 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.