Can Silicone Implants Be Removed Via the Armpit?

I had silicon implants put in via the armpit. The left implant was 2.00 cc and the right was 2.25 because the right breast was smaller than the left breast originally. The left implant is now larger than the right and should have been 1.75 or 1.50 cc. Can the silcone implant be removed through the same incision via the arm pit? Can the gel be drained prior to removal? If not, what incision is the least invasive. Please help.

Doctor Answers 4

Breast Implant Removal via Axillary Incision?

Yes, it should be possible to remove a small silicone gel implant through the axillary incision,  assuming that no other work is planned. For example, if any adjustment of the breast implant pockets is planned another incision ( such as an infraareolar or inframammary) will provide better exposure in my opinion.  These silicone gel cannot be “drained".

Best wishes.

San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,498 reviews

Implant removal

If the implants are small and they are intact and there is no other work that needs to be done, then the implants can be removed through the armpit.

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

Revision a little more difficult..

Gel cannot be drained prior to removal. If you are having a straight forward exchange of implants, then this can be accomplished through the armpit incision. Removal of ruptured implants or significant pocket revision is more difficult and I would recommend the periareolar or inframammary incision.

Brian Klink, MD
Vacaville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 94 reviews

Removal of Implants Through Previous Armpit Incisions Can Be Tough

Removing a silicone gel implant through a previous axillary incision is possible, but can be very difficult at times.  If it simply a change from one implant to another, and the implant is intact, then it can be very starightforward.  However, if the implant is ruptured at all, or any pocket work needs to be done, then this can be very difficult.  The armpit gives you very limited visual access, so it usually requires making a separate inframammary or periareolar incision.  I hope this helps.

Christopher V. Pelletiere, MD
Barrington Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 75 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.