Does Scar Tissue Rubbing Against Implant Wear It out Faster?

I have had my round saline under muscle implants for 8 years now and am terrified that they will deflate. I just finished breastfeeding and got some scar tissue from the excess bloodflow in my breasts. Would the implant rubbing on the scar tissue wear out the implants faster and cause deflation? My doctor is really busy and if something happens, I would have to wait 11 months for surgery!

Doctor Answers 10

Let's talk numbers

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To address your concern in a scientific way, it is very helpful to look at large national studies that addressed The deflation rate for saline implants. Mentor study showed a deflation rate of 1.3% with a potential increase by one percent per year. The deflation rate start being important for older implants (more than 10 years). The incidence is still very low. In any case,even if deflation occurs the answer is a very quick implant exchange surgery.

Hope that helps!

No scientific evidence to support higher risk for deflation

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Congratulations for the newest member of your family. There is no scientific evidence to support that you are at a higher risk for deflation because of the breast implants rubbing on scar tissue. I would follow up with plastic surgeon and address your concerns with him/her. In the meanwhile, continue to enjoy your implants and your new baby! I wish you the very best!

Stephen A. Goldstein, MD
Englewood Plastic Surgeon

You are not at increased risk of deflation

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What you describe puts you at no increased risk of deflation. If at some time you do have a deflation, you should address it before the pocket shrinks so you may need a different doctor anyway (I really doubt the doctor couldn't fit you in asap for a 1 hour procedure!). It is easy to switch out for a new implant and can often be done under local anesthesia. But don't spend any time worrying as you have enough on your hands with your family.

Deflation of breast implants is not dangerous.

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1) Scar tissue and breast feeding have nothing to do with deflation of breast implants. Your implants will probably last a lot longer.

2) If you should get a deflation, it does not affect your health and is not an emergency.

George J. Beraka, MD (retired)
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon

Breast Implants and scar tissue

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Scar tissue should have very little impact if at all on the wear and tear on your implants. Deflations usually occur in stress folds of the implants over many years.

Saline implants and deflation

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The deflation rate should be independent of the scar tissue you are experiencing. You should confirm with your surgeon that if an implant should deflate that you will be able to have it replaced fairly quickly. His/her schedule, if truly 11 months out, should only refer to elective cases. Otherwise, find a new surgeon who can follow you and treat you quickly if deflation occurs. Better to be prepared, but the risks are fairly low.

Theodore Katz, MD, FACS
Philadelphia Plastic Surgeon

Unlikely for breast implants to wear out faster with scar tissue rubbing

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Don't worry about things you can't control, although I am not sure you have anything to worry about. If your doctor is so busy and you need surgery, he may have a partner. ;)

No need to wait 11 months.

John P. Di Saia, MD
Orange Plastic Surgeon

Don't make up problems to worry about

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My advice is to not make up problems to worry about. There is no evidence that your situation would lead to an increased deflation rate. If your implants are fine, then enjoy them and don't worry yourself.

Implants do not leak by rubbing on scar tissue

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I would not be worried about saline implants leaking. First of all, there is nothing you can really do about it. Second, you will know when they leak. Third, it is not dangerous if they leak. Finally, saline implants do not leak because of rubbing against scar tissue. They usually leak because of the folds. Now if the implants get compressed by contracting capsular scar tissue, there may be more folds just as there is more folds if you place a baggie full of water in your pocket as opposed to laying it on a table. Try not to worry about the implants and try to enjoy them.

Robin T.W. Yuan, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon


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Everyone who has implants gets scar tissue around them, that IS the capsule.  The implant will only last so long, but on average about 14 or so years.


Enjoy your baby.

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.